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Ofcom looks back at 10 years Adults’ media use

posted on 26 May, 2015   (public)

Ofcom looks back at 10 years Adults’ media use

Ofcom published, in May 2015, its Adults’ media use and attitudes Report 2015. The Report provides data on adults' (aged 16 and over) media use and attitudes across TV, radio, games, mobile and the internet, with a particular focus on online use and attitudes. It is published as part of Ofcom’s media literacy duties.

The research underpinning this report was first conducted in 2005. This year's report is a ten year anniversary edition. Therefore the Section 3 of the Report “Ten years: a retrospective” draws upon themes over the last ten years and takes a look into what has changed since 2005. The main features in this section reveal that:

  • People are spending twice as much time online compared to 10 years ago, fuelled by increasing use of tablets and smartphones. Internet users aged 16 and above claimed to spend nearly 10 hours online each week in 2005, by 2014 it had climbed to over 20 hours and 30 minutes.

  • The proportion of adults using the internet has risen by half - from six in ten in 2005 to almost nine in ten today.

  • Apple’s iPad launched in the UK five years ago. While just 5% of adults reported using a tablet to go online in 2010, this increased to 39% in 2014. Using a smartphone has more than doubled in five years, from 30% of adults in 2010 to 66% in 2014.

  • The amount of time people are online while ‘out and about’ - away from home, work or their place of study - has increased five-fold over the past ten years, from 30 minutes in 2005 to nearly two and a half hours in 2014.

  • Over a quarter (27%) of internet users regularly watch TV or films online, compared to one in ten in 2007.

  • The proportion of internet users saying they regularly play games online has doubled from 10% in 2005 to 22% in 2014.

  • Instant messaging across all devices (WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and BBM) has seen the biggest growth among 25-34 year olds, 80% of internet users in this age group are instant messaging at least once a week, up from 38% in 2005.

  • The use of social media has tripled since 2007, when Ofcom first asked people about their social media habits. Nearly three quarters (72%) of internet users aged 16 and above say they have a social media profile, compared to 22% in 2007.

  • The proportion of internet users aged 16 and above saying they are concerned about the internet has fallen over the past 10 years, from around 70% in 2005 to 51% in 2014.

  • People are much more likely to go online for public or civic activities now than they were in 2005. For example, in 2014 nearly eight in 10 internet users (78%) said they had gone.

  • 81 % of people in 2005 were aware that TV is regulated compared to 88% in 2014 for the radio the increase in awareness was much higher from 59% in 2005 to 79% in 2014.

The Report includes interesting summary infographics “Media literacy 10 years at a glance” highlighting trends in adults’ media use in 2005-2014.

Source: Ofcom