The BBC reports that nearly two million more Britons have come online during the last year, over half of which are over 50, according to new research by the UK Online Measurement Company (UKOM). It's usually OK to assume that Ireland is not that different than the UK, and that these figures are comparable with what is happening here. The BBC also reports that the majority of internet newbies were made up of over-50s, with more men than women joining up, and that Internet services are increasingly targeting the older generation.
The report also states that the older generation are attracted to a range of sites, including travel, genealogy, fashion, video and community sites. Interestingly, I have never heard of any of the 10 most popular Internet sites for the over 50's listed in the report (I wonder what the top ten Irish sites are for over 50'?):
- WA Shearings
- Fifty Plus
- Hand Picked Hotels
It's no surprise to me that the over 50's are the fastest growing group who are accessing the Internet. This is why initiatives such as Age Action's Getting Started with Computers are so important to encourage more of our older people to get on-line. The chart below shows the breakdown for Internet audience this year - surprisingly the figures for male over 65's is much higher than for females of the same age (while the breakdown is much more even in other age groups).