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Ten trends on Australians’ internet use – from payments to punting

Media intelligence company Meltwater and socially-led creative agency We Are Social have released Digital 2024: April Statshot, the latest quarterly update on social media and digital trends worldwide.  

The report highlights the top 10 findings on internet use in Australia:

  1. Global Internet adoption: Internet users worldwide have reached a “supermajority”, with over two in three people now online. This represents a growth of 178 million users from last year, equating to a 3.4 per cent annual increase. 
  2. Average daily internet usage: The average daily internet usage in Australia is 6.07 hours, slightly lower than the global average of 6.35 hours.  
  3. Cookie decline: 40.6 per cent of Australian internet users decline cookies at least some of the time, higher than the global average of 34.8 per cent.  
  4. Privacy concerns: 42 per cent of Australian internet users are worried about companies’ use of their personal data online compared to 30.9 per cent globally.  
  5. Digital content consumption: Australia ranks among the top five nations for internet users paying for digital content monthly, with 74.7 per cent engaging in such transactions, surpassing the global average of 67.7 per cent. 
  6. Streaming video popularity: A significant majority (94.2 per cent) of Australian internet users watch TV via streaming services, which is just outside the top 5 countries in the index, reflecting strong interest in video content consumption. 
  7. Paid for streaming: 45.7 per cent of Australian users aged 16 to 64 pay for a TV or movie streaming service each month, compared to a global average of 31.0 per cent, putting us in the seventh spot in the list of countries in the report. Similarly, 36.9 per cent pay for streaming music services (compared to a global average of 22.5 per cent), putting the country in fifth spot.  
  8. Online gambling habit: Australia has one of the highest percentages of online gambling or betting website or app users (17.6 per cent compared to the global average of 9.7 per cent).  
  9. Mobile payment adoption: Australia ranks in the top seven for the use of mobile payment services among internet users, with 35.7 per cent using platforms like Apple Pay, surpassing the global average of 24.1 per cent and leading English-speaking countries. 
  10. Connected experiences are moving to smaller screens: Ownership of smartwatches continues to increase. Australia sits in the top 14 of the 55 countries on the list, with 29.1 per cent of them having a smartwatch. 

The report also recorded a decrease in the average user time of many social media apps. For Australia, the average daily time spent on social media was 1 hour and 54 minutes compared to a global average of 2 hours and 20 minutes.

Australia is among the bottom seven countries on the list, at 27.3 per cent, when it comes to using social media as a source of news – the worldwide average is 34.3 per cent.  

Looking at the average amount of time active users spent on the different platforms’ apps on Android phones in a month, Australians spend the most time on TikTok, followed by YouTube, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, WhatsApp, X and LinkedIn. 

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