New evidence suggests internet is still accessible in Australia
AUSTRALIA’S ‘WEB ISSUES’ is a constant feature of the 2016 election campaign, with each side insisting they are a ‘people’s election’ while the other is a corporate one.
However, the results from the first online polls of the election campaign suggest the electorate may be shifting away from the ‘people’ side in recent weeks.
Internet speeds, as measured by an online survey conducted for the ABC, are still generally accessible, with almost half of voters saying they had access to at least one gigabyte of data.
“I’ve been trying to get my internet on and it’s pretty good,” one woman told the ABC.
A majority of voters have said they have access to a good internet connection in their home, while a few have access via broadband, with the average household owning more than 2,500 gigabytes of data, according to the poll.
But while internet speeds have improved, the ABC’s online poll found that while half of respondents said they had at least 1,000 gigabytes online, just 13 per cent of Australians have access.
As the election looms closer, it is expected that the Coalition will rely on its own internet service providers to provide internet service in the states of Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania.
The ABC’s poll, conducted by Ipsos-Reid for ABC News, also found that about one-third of respondents in Queensland said they did not use the internet in the past month, while half in South Australia said they were not online at all.
There is also a slight majority of Australians who do not use a computer, or use their phone, tablet or other mobile device for online purposes, but the number has increased significantly since the poll was conducted in December 2016.
According to the ABC survey, nearly two-thirds of respondents (67 per cent) in the US and one-quarter of respondents across the UK said they used a tablet or smartphone for online activities.
In the UK, a majority of people (59 per cent), Australians (59 percent) and Americans (59.5 per cent).
Internet users are also more likely to use a desktop or laptop for online work.
Overall, there is a large majority of respondents who do have a computer at home, with more than one in five Australians (19 per cent)) using one, and around half (50 per cent%) having a smartphone or tablet at home.
Online polls can be a useful tool for voters, as the results can help predict what the next election will look like.
With more than five million Australians expected to vote in the November election, online polls are a good way for the public to monitor the state of the political system, with all of the major parties competing for the same voters.