Household expenditure on communications is falling
Note: This publication uses unit record data from the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey. The HILDA Project was initiated and is funded by the Australian Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) and is managed by the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research (Melbourne Institute). The findings and views reported in this paper, however, are those of the author and should not be attributed to either FaHCSIA or the Melbourne Institute.
Source: BCR estimates from the Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey.
While communications spending has fallen as a share of the household budget (see previous chart), the amount spent by households on communications has grown for most of the past decade, in real terms. In the September quarter, it increased by 2.7 per cent in real terms compared with 0.4 per cent for all household consumption expenditure.
The composition of service technologies has changed
Source: ABS 8153.0 Internet Activity, Australia, June 2016, Table 1.
Since 2011, the proportion of internet subscribers with dial-up service connections has declined from 5 per cent to less than 1 per cent. Fibre to the premises subscriptions have grown strongly, while subscribers to DSL and mobile wireless have remained consistent. By June 2016, 99 per cent of internet subscribers had broadband connections.
Trend towards higher internet speeds
Source: ABS 8153.0 Internet Activity, Australia, June 2016, Table 2.
Since June 2011 there has been steady growth in the take up of internet subscriptions at higher internet speeds, and this accelerated from mid-2012. The proportion of subscribers with speeds of 8mbps or greater in June 2016 exceeded 83 per cent, almost double the proportion as at 2011.
ISPs offer a range of services
Source: ABS 8153.0 Internet Activity, Australia, June 2016, Table 4.
The proportion of ISPs offering other services has grown over recent years. The proportion offering VoIP, home telephone, IPTV and naked DSL services has also increased since 2011. Mobile telephone services provision spiked in 2013. As at June 2016, 90 per cent of internet services providers offered additional services.