In the spring of 2007 a total of 84 per cent of the 16 to 74-year-old Finnish residents reported they had used the Internet during the year leading up to the survey. The share of users was even higher in the other Nordic countries but lower, at two-thirds, in the EU countries. In Finland the proportion of employees using information technology at work varies clearly by level of urbanisation; in the capital region 87 per cent of employees used the Internet at work in 2007. In the rest of the country the corresponding figure was 65 per cent.
These data are based on Statistics Finland's recent review Information and communication technology in everyday life, which is a compilation of the results of an interview survey on the ICT use of Finnish residents conducted in the spring of 2007. The review also includes information necessary for a pan-European examination. Furthermore, it looks into the concept of social media and considers whether the idea of community is changing alongside the changes in modes of communication.
The proportion of people using the Internet in Europe increases towards the north. In Finland the proportion of Internet users has not really increased from the year before; in the January to April period of 2007 the Internet was used by 79 per cent of Finnish residents aged 15 to 74. The Internet was used at least once a week by 75 per cent of the population. A wireless local network at home led two-fifths of the users to increase their use of the Internet and e-mail, while use habits did not change for one-half of them.
The number of completely new Internet users was highest among the over 40-year-olds. The proportion of users grew the most among the 60 to 74-year-olds, even though the aged use the Internet clearly less than young people. Practically all students used the computer, the Internet and e-mail. Receiving online student guidance was the fastest increasing learning-related use.
A good one-fourth of all Internet users would gladly use it more. Two-thirds of them reported that they cannot use the Internet more than they currently do because they lack the time. Every third respondent reported a lack of language or Internet use skills or concerns about data protection as barriers to use. Excessive costs of use were a barrier to every tenth respondent.
Among all the uses of the Internet the reading blogs gained the biggest increase in popularity; one in three Internet users had read blogs in 2007. Every second student had read blogs. Some 5 per cent of the population wrote their own blogs. Among students the proportion was 15 per cent. In 2007 nearly every second student and every fourth employee had listened to the radio or watched television online. As many as one-fifth of the population had made Internet phone calls.
Even though consumers did not embrace online shopping as expected in the end of the 1990s, the consumption of products and services purchased online has grown steadily. The most popular services relate to tourism and accommodation. In 2007 a total of 720,000 persons, or 54 per cent of all online shoppers, had purchased such products. One year previously their number had been 480,000. Tickets for various events had been purchased by 41 per cent of all online shoppers. Other popular online purchases included clothing and footwear and music and videos.
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Last updated 30.5.2008