By Lizzy Ioannidou
This year saw a 6.8 per cent increase in the number of households with internet connection compared with 2017, the statistical service Cystat said on Thursday.
Households with internet access rose from 79.4 per cent in 2017 to 86.2 per cent in 2018, Cystat said.
The number of households with a personal computer also rose in 2018, reaching 78.7 per cent, compared with 75.9 per cent in 2017, while households with a laptop rose to 68.5 per cent compared with 65 per cent in 2017.
In households with minors and dependent children, the percentage with computers rose to 93 per cent, Cystat said, while the number also rose for households without dependent children to 72 per cent compared with 68.5 per cent last year.
Regarding frequency of use of the internet, Cystat noted that 83.7 per cent of people within the 16-74 age group use the internet at least once a week.
Over 99 per cent in the 16-24 age group use the internet at least once a week, while the percentage dramatically decreases in older age groups where only 37.5 per cent those aged 65-74 used the internet at least once weekly in 2018, though this figure did rise from 33.9 per cent in 2017.
Cystat added that people with higher levels of education use the internet more frequently (97.3 per cent) that those with lower levels of education (53.8 per cent).
The most popular activities on the internet were searching for information on goods and services (85.1 per cent), participation in social media (81.7 per cent), video streaming (80.8 per cent), internet calls with or without video sharing (74.4 per cent), and searching for information regarding health (64.1 per cent).
Moreover, Cystat noted that of the 87.5 per cent who made use of the internet during the first three months of 2018, used mobile phones or smartphones to gain access to the internet away from home or at work, while 16.7 per cent used a laptop and 11.5 per cent used a tablet.
Concerning online purchases during the first three months of 2018, some 23 per cent of people in the 16-74 age group made purchases online, compared with the corresponding period in 2017 when 24.4 per cent made online transactions.
The most popular products bought online were clothing and sports products (56.3 per cent), travel arrangements such as tickets and car rentals (51.3 per cent) and holiday accommodations (46.7 per cent).
Cystat added that for people in the 16-74 age group who made online purchases between April 2017 and March 2018, 82.9 per cent chose EU retailers, 35.8 per cent chose retailers outside the EU, while 34.6 per cent chose local retailers.