Older Australians go digital

Older Australians are embracing digital life with nearly four in five people (80 percent) aged 65 and over online, a new government report reveals.

That figure represents an upward trend, as four years ago only 65 per cent of older Australians were online.

The report Digital lives of older Australians, published by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), explores the extent of online engagement of Australians aged 65 plus.

National Seniors chief advocate Sarah Saunders welcomed the findings.

“The solid increase in the proportion going online debunks the myth that seniors are resistant to change”.

“That said, business and government must ensure that the 20 per cent who aren’t digitally connected continue to have traditional communication options,” said Saunders.

The report also found:

  • Nearly all older internet users go online from their home on a desktop, with a growing percentage using tablet and mobile;
  • Australian seniors are ahead of the UK and the USA in internet use; 
  • Older internet users tend to engage more strongly with traditional media such as free-to-air television, however one in four (26 per cent) also access news or read newspapers online;
  • Email is the most common online activity followed by banking and paying bills.

One in five older Australians (65+) has never accessed the internet.

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