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Six million accessing the Internet in Australia

Canberra, March 1 (Asia Pulse) - More Australians are getting access to theinternet and most of them are twenty-somethings. Half of all Australian households (3.

Canberra, March 1 (Asia Pulse) - More Australians are getting access to the internet and most of them are twenty-somethings.

Half of all Australian households (3.5 million households) had a home computer and one quarter (1.7 million households) had home Internet access in November 1999, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) estimates. This compares to November 1998 data where 47 per cent of Australian households (3.2 million) had access to a home computer while 19 per cent (1.3 million) had home Internet access. The increase in the number of households with home Internet access (476,000 households) was more than double the increase in the number of households with home computers (229,000) over the 12 months to November 1999.

An estimated six million adults (44 per cent of Australia's adult population) accessed the Internet in the 12 months to November 1999 compared with 4.2 million adults (31 per cent) in the 12 months to November 1998. As in previous quarters, adults most often reported accessing the Internet from work or home. Around 83 per cent of adults who accessed the Internet at home did so at least once a week, compared with 79 per cent who accessed it at work. Only 25 per cent of adults who accessed the Internet from sites other than home or work did so at least once a week. The likelihood that an adult is an Internet user decreases with age.

In the 12 months to November 1999, 73 per cent of 18-24 year olds accessed the Internet compared to 16 per cent of adults aged 55 or over. There were more adult males who accessed the Internet than adult females (48 per cent and 39 per cent respectively) and more adults in capital cities did so than in other areas (48 per cent and 36 per cent respectively). Nearly 6 per cent of Australian adults (803,000) used the Internet to purchase or order goods or services for their own private use in the 12 months to November 1999. This is a significant rise from the 2 per cent of adults (286,000) who did likewise in the equivalent period to November 1998.

For the estimated 803,000 Australian adult Internet shoppers, books or magazines and computer software or equipment were the two most common (27 per cent and 19 per cent respectively) types of goods or services purchased for private use in the 12 months to November 1999.