Press release: 12.644-235/21

Private internet use reaches a new peak

Vienna, 2021-11-03 – In 2021 internet use for private purposes has reached a new peak in Austria, as shown by the results of the survey on the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in private households by Statistics Austria. 93% of the Austrian resident population aged 16 to 74 used the internet at least once within the last three months prior to the time of the survey.

"The digital transformation of Austria's society has gained further momentum due to the coronavirus pandemic: Internet use has grown in 2021 considerably compared to the previous year, especially amongst older age groups. Furthermore, the trend of using the internet on smartphones was reinforced, evermore people perform their banking transactions online," said Statistics Austria Director General Tobias Thomas.

Increased use of the internet primarily due to older age groups

93% of the Austrian resident population aged 16 to 74 years used the internet within the last three months preceding the survey. This corresponds to 6.1 million people and represents an increase of about five percentage points compared to the previous year.

The increase in the use of the internet was primarily driven by older age groups. While the internet use of individuals aged 35 years or younger was already approaching 100% in previous years, the proportion of individuals aged 55 to 64 years and 65 to 74 years was trailing behind at 78% and 57% in 2020, respectively. Even though the proportion of individuals who have never used the internet before remained largest in these two age groups (55 to 64-year-olds: 8%; 65 to 74-year-olds: 30%), a significant increase in older internet users was recorded. Nearly nine out of ten (89%) individuals aged 55 to 64 years and more than two thirds (66%) of those aged 65 to 74 years used the internet within the last three months preceding the survey. Compared to the previous year this corresponds to an increase of 11 and 9 percentage points, respectively. Not only internet use but also the frequency of internet use has increased amongst older age groups. Compared to 2020's survey, the proportion of individuals who used the internet several times during a day increased for individuals aged 55 to 64 years from 59% to 62% and for those aged 65 to 74 years from 36% to 38%.

On-going trend towards internet use on smartphones

The type of device used to access the internet was last assessed in 2018. At this point in time smartphones were already used most commonly (78%), followed by laptops (57%), desktop computers (47%) and tablets (33%). Since then, the order of the most frequently used devices to access the internet has not changed. However, smartphone use has become even more popular. In 2021 88% of the 16 to 74-year-olds used a smartphone to access the internet. Meanwhile, the desktop computer has lost its popularity. Only 41% still use a desktop computer to access the internet. In contrast, the use of laptops (57%) and tablets (32%) to access the internet has remained nearly the same as in 2018.

Age played an important role regarding the choice of device used to access the internet. Although differences between the age groups have been diminishing, only about half (55%) of the individuals aged 65 years or older used a smartphone to access the internet, while the percentage of individuals aged 25 years or younger amounted close to 100%.

Online-banking is becoming more popular

Online-banking applications continue to grow in popularity in Austria. About 4.7 million people aged 16 to 74 years have performed their personal banking online within the last 3 months preceding the survey. This corresponds to 71% of the population in this age group. Thus, an increase of 18 percentage points was recorded since 2016 (53%). Compared to the previous year's survey (66%) this still represents an increase of five percentage points.

Albeit online-banking services were predominantly being used by younger people, an increase in their use was observed across all age groups.

For more detailed results and further information concerning statistics on "ICT usage in households and by individuals in 2021" please refer to our website.

Information on methods, definitions: These are the extrapolated results of the survey on ICT usage in households and by individuals in Austria in 2021. The survey is based on an EU regulation (Regulation (EC) No 2019/1700) which obliges Austria and all other EU member states to deliver specified data, as well as a Commission regulation (Regulation (EU) No 2020/1013) which contains all indicators. The survey was conducted by Statistics Austria as a sample survey. The questionnaire, definitions and methodology were standardised across the EU.  
Data from approximately 3,600 households and approximately 4,600 individuals was collected via telephone interviews or a web-based questionnaire. Data collection took place from April to June 2021. The reference period was the time of the survey for household data and the last three or twelve months prior to the survey for individual data. Households with at least one household member between the age of 16 and 74 years and household members who fell in this age group were surveyed. 
Apart from the main indicators assessed each year (ICT equipment in households, internet use, use of e-government services and online shopping), the questionnaire also included annually changing indicators on ICT-related issues (according to the Commission's Communication "Digital Single Market Strategy" and the benchmarking framework "Monitoring the Digital Economy & Society 2016-2021"). Since this survey was conducted in all EU member states, data comparison within the EU will be possible. EU-wide results are expected by the end of 2021.

 

Table: Internet users within the last three months from 2010 to 2021
Characteristics1)Individuals who used the internet within the last three months preceding the survey
20102015201620172018201920202021
in % of all individuals
Overall74,283,984,387,987,587,887,5
92,5
Age        
16 to 24 years95,299,398,799,799,199,299,6
100,0
25 to 34 years91,898,999,799,698,498,497,7
99,8
35 to 44 years85,994,194,597,695,796,295,7
98,9
45 to 54 years76,887,083,090,792,791,391,5
97,1
55 to 64 years52,869,471,779,677,380,778,2
88,9
65 to 74 years28,246,051,351,553,553,557,4
65,5
Sex        
Men78,888,288,090,789,590,389,2
94,2
Women69,779,780,785,285,485,385,9
90,9
Men by age        
16 to 24 years94,198,799,599,899,099,499,1
100,0
25 to 34 years93,299,599,799,797,397,999,3
100,0
35 to 44 years88,195,696,897,598,097,994,9
98,5
45 to 54 years81,490,184,892,693,690,590,9
96,9
55 to 64 years61,377,275,584,980,186,481,9
90,0
65 to 74 years39,459,665,660,560,662,463,2
75,6
Women by age        
16 to 24 years96,4100,097,899,699,299,0100,0
100,0
25 to 34 years90,398,499,799,499,699,096,1
99,6
35 to 44 years83,792,792,297,793,394,596,4
99,3
45 to 54 years72,383,881,288,891,992,092,1
97,2
55 to 64 years44,861,968,174,474,675,274,7
87,9
65 to 74 years18,434,238,943,647,445,652,4
56,6
Q: STATISTICS AUSTRIA, Survey on ICT usage in households 2021. - Data collection: April to June every year from 2015 to 2021. - 1) Individuals aged 16 to 74 years.

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Grafik 4                          

For further inquiries please contact Directorate Social Statistics, Statistics Austria:  
Mag. Nina Djahangiri, phone: +43 1 71128-7522, e-mail: nina.djahangiri@statistik.gv.at and 
Mag. Jakob Peterbauer, phone: +43 1 71128-7392, e-mail: jakob.peterbauer@statistik.gv.at

Media owner, producer and publisher: 
STATISTICS AUSTRIA, Federal Institution under Public Law 
1110 Vienna, Austria, Guglgasse 13, Tel.: +43 1 71128-7777 
presse@statistik.gv.at  
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