8146.0 - Household Use of Information Technology, Australia, 2004-05  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/12/2005   
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This is the reported age of a person on their last birthday.

Analog/Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN)

A telecommunications network operated by a carrier to provide services to the public.


Abbreviation for binary digit and describing the smallest unit of information handled by a computer. One bit expresses a 1 or a 0 in a binary numeral, or a true or false logical condition. See also Byte.


Defined by the ABS as an 'always on' Internet connection with an access speed equal to or greater than 256 Kilobits per second (Kbps).


Abbreviation for binary term. A unit of data, today almost always consisting of 8 bits. A byte can represent a single character, such as a letter, a digit, or a punctuation mark. See also kilobit and kilobyte.


Describes those technologies including coaxial cable, fibre optic cable and hybrid fibre coaxial cable which are capable of transmitting data at speeds of up to 2 Gigabits per second (Gbps).


A person of any age who is a natural, adopted, step, or foster son or daughter of a couple or lone parent, usually resident in the same household, and who does not have a child or partner of his/her own usually resident in the household.

Computer use

This refers to use of a computer in the 12 months prior to interview.

Dial-up connections

Connection to the Internet via modem and dial-up software utilising the public switched telecommunication network (PSTN).

Digital Subscriber Line

More properly referred to as ADSL as this covers several digital technologies (e.g. asymmetric DSL or ADSL and Symmetric DSL or SDSL) for fast two-way data connections over the PSTN.


Employed persons are those who had a job or business, or who undertook work without pay in a family business, in the week prior to the survey for a minimum of one hour per week. Includes persons who were absent from a job or business. Includes Community Development Employment Program participants.

Equivalised Gross Household Income

Gross household income adjusted using an equivalence scale. For a lone person household it is equal to gross household income. For a household comprising more than one person, it is an indicator of the gross household income that would need to be received by a lone person household to enjoy the same level of economic well-being as the household in question.

Equivalised gross household income quintiles

These are groupings of 20% of the total population when ranked in ascending order according to equivalised gross household income. The population used for this purpose includes all people living in private dwellings, including children and other persons under the age of 18 years. As the scope of this publication is restricted to only those persons aged 18 years and over, the distribution of this smaller population across the quintiles is not necessarily the same as it is for persons of all ages, i.e. the percentage of persons aged 18 years and over in each of these quintiles may be larger or smaller than 20%.

Ex-metropolitan areas

Refers to areas outside the capital city statistical divisions.


A data transfer speed measurement for high speed networks.


A household consists of a person living alone, or two or more related or unrelated persons who live and eat together in private residential accommodation.


This refers to people who identified themselves, or were identified by another household member, as being of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander origin.

Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN)

A digital access technique for both voice and data. Digital alternative to an analog public switched telephone service and carries data or voltages consisting of discrete steps or levels, as opposed to continuously variable analog data. ISDN enables digital transmission over the PSTN.


A world-wide public computer network. Organisations and individuals can connect their computers to this network and exchange information across a country and/or across the world. The Internet provides access to a number of communication services including the World Wide Web and carries email, news, entertainment and data files.

Internet Access

Availability of lines, points, ports, and modem to subscribers to access the Internet.

Internet use

This refers to the use of the Internet in the 12 months prior to interview. It includes access via mobile phones, set-top boxes connected to either an analogue or digital television, and games machines.


A measure od data transfer rate . A unit of data transfer that equates to 1000 bits per second.

Kilobit (Kb)

A data unit of 1,024 bits and generally abbreviated as kb or kbit. Data speeds are generally referred to in kilobits (kbps) rather than kilobytes.

Kilobyte (KB)

A data unit of 1,024 bytes and generally abbreviated as KB or Kbyte.

Megabit (Mb)

A data unit of 1,048, 576 bits, sometimes interpreted as 1 million bits. Faster data speeds are generally referred to in megabits rather than megabytes (hence Mbps).

Megabyte (MB)

A data unit of 1,048, 576 bytes, sometimes interpreted as 1 million bytes.


Metropolitan refers to capital city statistical divisions. These delimit an area which is stable for general statistical purposes. The boundary is defined to contain anticipated development of a city for a period of 20 years. The metropolitan area contains more than just the urban centre, and represents the city in the wider sense.

Non Dial-up connections

Refers to permanent and 'always on' connections to the Internet via a variety of technologies including Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN), Digital Subscriber Lines (DSL), Cable, Wireless, Satellite, dedicated data service, frame relay, etc.


A satellite stationed in geosynchronous orbit that acts as a microwave relay station, receiving signals sent from a ground based station, amplifying them, and re-transmitting them on a different frequency to another ground-based station. Satellites can be used for high-speed transmission of computer data.