The way Australians are accessing information is changing at a rapid pace.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority has released its annual report detailing how Australians use the internet across 2013-14.
When it comes to internet access, desktop usage is falling and 68% of Australians used three or more devices to access the web.
Here are a few trends which define Australia’s internet usage.
The number of internet services has plateaued. Mobile services in operation fell slightly (0.3%) to 31.01 million across 2013-14. ACMA said the slight drop indicates the Australian market for mobile services is at or near saturation levels.
An estimated 81% of Australians (14.7 million) have an internet connection in the home, with growth slowing over the past three years.
Aussies are downloading more data and making greater use of mobiles. The total volume of data downloaded in Australia during the June quarter of 2014 was 53 per cent higher
than the volume downloaded during the June quarter of 2013.
While the use of mobile devices has grown it was fixed-line broadband users which made up 93 per cent of total growth in data downloads during the quarter.
The three most popular activities for adult Australians online was reported to be emailing, researching and surfing the net. Social media came in fifth place, closely followed by online shopping.
About 6.4 million Australians streamed music, movies, tv shows, or video clips over the period - a 21% increase over the past five years. ACMA said video and audio content is adding to the continued growth in the volume of data downloaded.
In the six months to May 2014, 68 per cent of internet users accessed the internet via three or more devices. ACMA found 76% of Australian adults used a mobile to access the internet while 74% used a laptop.
The number of people accessing the internet using a tablet increased by 25% in the six months to June 2014 to reach 5.5 million adult Australians.
Over a quarter of Australian adults don't have a fixed-line telephone. The report shows a reduced dependency on fixed-voice communications with no growth shown over the year. The graphic shows a correlation between age and mobile phone only households, with 51% of those aged 25–34, living in a household without a fixed-line telephone.
The growth in the intensity of online engagement is also being matched by an increase in their exposure to network security threats. ACMA found there was a jump in the average number of computer infections reported, up from 16,034 per day in 2012–13 to 25,839 per day at May 2014.
Revenue from the sale of goods or services online by businesses operating in Australia reached $246 billion during 2012–13, a $10 billion increase over 2011–12.
Compared to the rest of the world, Australia ranked second behind the UK in terms of average per head annual online expenditure.
The full report is here.
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