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The Number of UK Adults to Never Have Gone Online Falls to 6.4 Million

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014 (10:08 am) - Score 362

The latest Internet Access Quarterly Update (Q1-2014) from the Government’s Office for National Statistics has reported 44.6 million adults (87%) in the United Kingdom have used the Internet (up from 44.3m at the end of 2013), although issues like disability and old age meant that 6.4m adults (13%) had never gone online (down from 6.7m in 2013).

The report notes that 99% 16-24 year olds had used the Internet (7.1 million people) but this falls to a low of just 37% for adults aged 75 years+ (1.8 million people), which equates to 47% of those who have never gone online (3 million people). Similarly disability remains the single biggest problem area and the ONS states that 3.5 million disabled adults had never used the Internet (down from 3.6m at the end of 2013). Of course old age and disability often go hand in hand.

Personal income can also be a factor, although the UK has some of the cheapest broadband packages in the world and so the impact here is small. At the end of the first quarter 2014, Internet use had almost reached full coverage for those earning in excess of £500 a week, although 5% (253,000) of those earning less than £200 per week still had not used the Internet (down from 286,000 at the end of 2013).

Meanwhile the split between men (89%) who go online and women (85%) remains unchanged. Elsewhere we shouldn’t forget that some people simply have no interest in surfing the Internet and must not be forced. On the other hand the Government has recently launched a new Digital Inclusion Charter, which represents the latest attempt to get all of the UK’s refuseniks online.

Internet Access Quarterly Update Q1-2014 (PDF)
http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/dcp171778_362910.pdf

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