New research on telecommunications services in Brazil revealed that only 40.8 percent of households have internet access, the main barrier being the price of computing devices and access services.
The numbers of the research System of Indicators of Social Perception (SIPS), undertaken by the Brazilian Institute of Applied Economic Research (Ipea) show that the remaining digitally excluded households do not have internet access due to not owning a computer (59.6 percent), not being able to afford access services (14.1 percent), not having the need for internet (8.7 percent) and not knowing how to use it (4.3 percent).
Regarding the price of the devices, 34 percent of the households that do not own a computer said they would pay between R$300 ($129) and R$800 ($344) for a computer. Most Brazilian large retailers sell basic desktops for at least R$1000 ($430), which partly explains the recent rise in popularity of low-cost tablets as entry-level computing devices.
In terms of the geographical spread, some 51.5 percent of the connected households in Brazil are located in the southeast of the country, where Brazil's largest urban centers of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro are located. The least connected region is the Northeast of the country with 20.7 percent of all internet-enabled homes.
According to the IPEA research, fixed telephony is available in 54.4 percent of households. Of the remaining 45.6 percent, some 59.4 percent use mobile phones as substitutes for fixed lines and 18.5 percent said they do not have the need or interest for the service.
The survey also suggests that 9.1 percent of Brazilian households do not have access to any kind of telecommunication service, including fixed or mobile telephony, internet access or paid TV channels.
The IPEA survey covered 3,809 households in 212 municipalities across all the 27 Brazilian states.