Three in four Australians buy online

Some 6.8 million households have broadband, with the most common type of connection being DSL (54 per cent)

The number of users making purchases online is accelerating, having increased 8 percentage points from last year, according to to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The ABS today released its annual Household Use of Information Technology report for 2012-13.

The report showed that 76 per cent of Internet users purchased or ordered goods or services online. That’s up from 68 per cent in the 2010-11 report and 64 per cent in the 2008-09 report.

The most popular things ordered in 2012 and 2013 were travel, accommodation, memberships and tickets, with 74 per cent of the users making a purchase of that kind. Half of users bought music, videos, books or magazines and 49 per cent bought clothes, cosmetics or jewellery, the report found.

Also in the report, ABS found that nine in 10 Australian households with Internet access have broadband.

The report said that 93 per cent of the 7.3 million households with Internet access had a broadband connection. Of the remainder, 4 per cent had dial-up and 3 per cent didn’t know what they had.

The 7.3 million households with the Internet represent 83 per cent of all Australian households. That means that more than three quarters (77 per cent) of all households have broadband, according to the report.

Among the 6.8 million households with broadband, the most common type of connection was DSL (54 per cent). In addition, 40 per cent of the households said they used mobile broadband via a laptop, tablet or desktop computer, and 33 per cent said they used broadband on a mobile or smartphone.

The numbers do not add up to 100 because some households reported multiple broadband connections.

Children, location and income were all factors in whether a household had Internet access.

About 96 per cent of homes with children under 15 could connect to the Internet, compared to 78 per cent of homes without kids that young, the report said.

The report found that 98 per cent of households with income of $120,000 or more had the Internet, compared to 57 per cent of households with income less than $40,000.

And 85 per cent of households in capital cities had the Internet, compared to 79 per cent outside of capital cities.

Adam Bender covers telco and enterprise tech issues for Computerworld and is the author of a dystopian novel about surveillance. Follow him on Twitter: @WatchAdam

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