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18 hours! Big jump in Internet use in Harris poll

Yep, you spend a lot of time online. No surprise there. According to a recent Harris Poll, those aged 30-39 spend the most time online (18 hours), followed by those aged 25-29 (17 hours) and 40-49 (17 hours).

According to Harris: “People’s usage varies greatly; one in five (20%) of adult Internet users are online for only two hours or less a week while one in seven (14%) are spending 24 or more hours a week online.”

And Internet usage is increasing quite a bit.

Over the years the average hours spent online have increased from 7 hours in 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2002, to between 8 and 9 hours in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006. In 2007, it increased to 11 hours. Last year (in October after the financial crisis broke and before the presidential election) Internet users were online for 14 hours a week, double what it was from 1999 to 2002.

Harris also speculates that the recession may be playing a role in increased use of the web:

The increase in the number of hours spent online in the last two years compared to all previous years is striking. It probably reflects a growing ability to use the Internet, an increase in sites and applications, increased TV watching online and increased purchasing online. Also, hours online may have increased because of the recession. Going online is free; going out usually costs money.

Read more about the poll.

Here are three interesting stats from the poll:

  1. 184 million
    The number of adults online in the United States.
  2. Half
    Buying is big. Half of those online bought something in the past month.
  3. 17.5 million
    The number of adults who were online in 1995.

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