Not Logging On

Posted on 16 November 2007 in Internet (No comments)

Here's one for you. Have a think about how many people you know who do not have an internet connection in their house.

I just did and to be honest, there's a few "don't knows" in there around more casual acquaintances. However most people I know seem to have the net in their home.

Yes, I know. I work in an industry which is all about computer technology in some form or other. Which is why I thought mostly about people away from work.

It's also true that most of the people I know are pretty media-savvy who have all grown up with computers in schools and things like that. I would hazard a guess that many people reading this right now will be in the same boat.

In fact it's hard sometimes to imagine life without a computer somewhere in it - they get everywhere. Children in primary school are now taught how to find information on the internet (a teacher friend of mine told me that she once taught Google skills by getting her class to find me and my website - something which continues to amuse me mightily). We use them at work. They're in our homes. They're everywhere.

Television programmes plug their websites. Radio programmes invite you to email in. People witter on about how downloading programmes via the net is killing off traditional TV right now.

We're all very absorbed in computers and the internet. It is part of the way we live.

So here's a hard hitting statistic courtesy of the Office of National Statistics. Their rather wonderful site, which I discovered today whilst doing some research for a paper on IPTV possibilities with digital TV set top boxes, has a plethora of information available to you, and a nice page all about Internet Access.

Reading it is interesting reading. It says 61% of UK households (which is roughly 15m) have internet access. And then 84% of them then have broadband.

Which sounds pretty impressive. Except that it's a half-full, half-empty situation because when you look at it from the other direction, 39% of UK households don't have the internet. And half the UK doesn't have broadband.

That's actually a sizable minority - a big chunk of people that we probably don’t always appreciate the size of. And certainly a reminder to us all, that whilst the internet is big, it's certainly not ubiquitous.

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