1308.8 - In fACT - Statistical Information on the ACT and Region, May 2010  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 11/05/2010   
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Subsequent to the development of personal computers, in 1998, the majority (62%) of ACT households without a computer did not yet own one because they either had no use for a computer or the costs were too high. However, this view has changed dramatically over the past decade. The capabilities of computers used by households have increased significantly while also becoming more affordable. In 1998, 64% of households in the ACT had access to a home computer and this has increased steadily to 88% over 10 years.

ACT Households with access to a home computer
Graph: ACT households with a home computer, 1998 to 2008-09

The number of households in the ACT with home Internet access more than tripled from 27% in 1998 to 82% in 2008-09. Over the same period, the ACT maintained the highest proportion of home Internet connectivity of all states and territories.

In 2004-05, dial-up access was the preferred Internet connection type for ACT households that indicated they had either a dial-up or broadband connection; 66% had dial-up, compared with 34% which had broadband. In the following year, broadband became the preferred connection type. In 2008-09, 92% of these households connected to the Internet by broadband while only 8% remained on dial-up. Of the households in the ACT with broadband Internet access in 2008-09, the three most common connection types were: Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL/SDSL) 60%, cable 10% and wireless 8%, the connection speeds of which far exceed that of dial-up. The Australian Government plans to continue improving Internet infrastructure through the National Broadband Network with the objective of providing 90 per cent of homes, schools and workplaces with ‘fibre to the premise’ delivering speeds of 100 megabits per second and connecting all other premises with next generation wireless and satellite technologies, offering speeds of 12 megabits per second or more. (National Broadband Network - Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy)

ACT households with Internet access by connection type
Graph: ACT households with internet access by connection type 2004-05 to 2008-09

At the time of the 2006 Census, Forrest, Fadden, O'Malley, Macarthur, Chapman and Barton were some of the ACT's suburbs which had the highest proportions of occupied private dwellings with a broadband connection. The ACT also had the highest proportion of households completing their 2006 Census form online using the ABS eCensus with 16%, seven percentage points higher than the national average.

ACT DWELLINGS WITH BROADBAND INTERNET ACCESS, 2006, as a percentage of all occupied private dwellings (b)
Diagram: ACT dwellings with Internet access, 2006

(b) Excludes 'Visitors only' and 'Other not classifiable households'
Source: 2006 Census data - Customised map from Canberra...A Social Atlas, 2006 (cat no. 2030.8).