It's not just Gen-X that is online all the time, but it's also senior citizens that are driving internet usage. Senior citizens, either retired, salaried or entrepreneurs are a fast-growing segment among web surfers.
According to the Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), 15% of senior citizens access the internet from cyber cafes, with 81% using the internet for more than five hours a week. Also, 62% use the internet for looking up news online and 2% read news on their mobile. About 26% of them look up stock quotes and engage in trading as compared to 15% of all internet users, with 38% of senior citizens using the internet for online banking services and 21% for online shopping.
The sample size for the survey was 101 senior citizens above the age group of 61 years, 87% being male and 13% female. With India's internet population poised to reach 100m by '07-08 from the current 38.5m, the absolute numbers of senior citizens are expected to rise to 3m by '07-08. The penetration is expected to remain the same or increase marginally from the current 2.7% to 3%.
Of the total number of people sampled, 45% of senior citizens have been using the internet for more than six years; 44% have been using the internet for 3-5 years. Coming to what they use the internet for, 99% of wired seniors have used email; 70% surf for information online; 66% use search engines; 62% have read the news online; 47% chat online; 38% bank online; and 26% have traded stocks online.
“It is encouraging to see senior 'netizens' as enthusiastic as youngsters in a variety of activities that define online life and show an online maturity in transacting online that surpasses the general population,” said Preeti Desai, president, IAMAI. The top five cities for the survey include - 23% of from Delhi, 22% from Mumbai, 12% from Chennai, 4% from Hyderabad and Kolkata. 3% from Bangalore.
About 4% of those surveyed were SSC/HSC qualified, 10% had been to college, but were not graduates, 37% had a graduate/post-graduate general degree and 35% had a graduate/post graduate professional degree.