Tue, Jul 10, 2012 - Page 4 News List

Wireless and mobile use increased, survey finds

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

The number of people using wireless Internet and mobile communication has increased over the number last year, a survey shows.

The survey, conducted annually by the Taiwan Network Information Center (TWNIC) since 2002, investigated the use of broadband Internet services among those 12 years of age or older.

The organization collected 3,088 valid samples between March 1 and May 27 nationwide, including Kinmen, Matsu and other outlying islands.

The survey found that the penetration rate of the broadband Internet service topped 74.18 percent among those who are 12 years of age or above, and about 44 percent of them access the Internet service via mobile phones or tablet computers.

Liang Te-hsin (梁德馨), chairwoman of the Fu Jen Catholic University’s department of statistics and information science, said it also found that users of the wireless communication services have risen to 9.62 million, a 10.77 percent increase compared with last year.

Meanwhile, the number of mobile communication service users has jumped to 5.35 million, an increase of 12.16 percent.

Liang said wireless Internet service users were defined as those using laptops, tablet computers or mobile phones to access the Internet through wireless access points.

Mobile communication service users were defined as those using laptops, tablet computers and mobile phones to access the Internet through the third-generation telecoms network, 3.5G network and Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (WiMAX) network, she said.

Liang said the survey also found that checking social network sites, playing online games and online shopping were the three main online activities.

“Most people said that they use social network sites because their friends are using them as well,” Liang said. “It [the social network] allows them to interact with their friends more frequently and to express their feelings instantly.”

Liang said that about 85 percent of respondents said that they spent less than three hours daily managing their social network. About 10 percent said they spent more than three hours a day checking social network sites.

Among the social network users, Liang said that about a quarter of them agreed that use of social networks had decreased their face-to-face contact with other people.

The same situation also occurred among players of online games and online shoppers. Liang said that about 40 percent of the online game players said their non-online social interaction had declined. Nearly 50 percent of online shoppers reported that they had reduced their visits to brick-and-mortar stores.

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