Skip Navigation

People spend more time online, than on holiday
Tuesday 08 August 2006 12:02:00 by Andrew Ferguson

The Guardian website and newspaper carries details of a survey carried out by YouGov, that shows Internet users in the UK are spending an average of 23 hours a week online. Put another way this is 50 days a year spent online. YouGov surveyed 15,323 users and come up with the following stats for a weeks usage:

  • Web browsing, average of seven hours and 54 minutes
  • Online gaming, average of four hours and 40 minutes
  • Email, three hours and 26 minutes
  • Online TV, two hours and 23 minutes
  • Internet shopping, one hour and 53 minutes
  • Internet telephone calls, one hour and 52 minutes
  • Online banking, one hour and 26 minutes

When you consider Ofcom research has shown the average person watches around 19 hours of TV a week, then these figures take on a new meaning. I think many people would be surprised if they added up the various 10 minutes spent sat at a computer at home. One big difference between Internet usage and watching TV, is that TV is very often passive, whereas the Internet is a mixture of simply viewing content, creating your own content and interacting with others.

What is interesting is that if you estimate the usage of this average user, you come up with a figure around 0.6GB per week, or roughly two to three GigaBytes per month. The largest chunk of this being the TV and video over the broadband connection, e.g. the Sky free movie downloads weigh in at around 0.5GB for a 90 minute movie, but most streaming media and webcams run at much lower bit-rate, and if you are willing to pay for higher bit-rates (i.e. less compression) then the size increases, for example each film on the BT Vision store weighs in at around 1.5GB to 2GB.

For those wondering what all the fuss is about, cast your mind back perhaps 10 or 15 years, how many lunchtimes would you be queued up at the bank to pay a bill, and how many of these can now be paid online? How often were Saturdays spent travelling miles to look at furniture and measure it, but now with broadband you can view it online, read what others have to say about things before you buy them, and even buy it online.


There are currently no comments about this news item.

You must be logged in to post comments. Click here to login.