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Last Updated: Monday, 19 January, 2004, 14:03 GMT
PCs at home make 'better workers'
Home computer user
Computers at home mean people can do more and ease stress
Having a computer at home means people are much more efficient when they are at work, according to a survey.

Three out of 10 said a PC at home made them less stressed, because they could balance personal and work life by being able to do more outside of their job.

The survey by the Office of the e-Envoy coincides with the launch of new Home Computing Initiative (HCI) guidelines.

The HCI lets companies offer tax-free loans for workers who want to buy their own personal computers.

Better know-how

The guidelines announced by Trade and Industry Secretary Patricia Hewitt explain how to take advantage of the 500 tax exemption originally introduced in 1999.

The government hopes if more people have computers at home for family use, they will gain better technology skills which will help them at work.

According to the survey, having a computer at home meant 60% of people dealt with personal issues outside work, 55% found it easier to deal with bills and shopping, and 32% said it gave them more flexibility when it came to hours spent in the office.

It's clear we are looking at a huge opportunity for both UK businesses and UK employees and are delighted that companies like HP also see this opportunity
Rick Skett, Intel
An alliance of technology giants, including Intel, Hewlett Packard, BT and Microsoft, has been formed to help promote the scheme, and to come up with attractive computer packages for people to buy.

"Intel is, as a member of the HCI Alliance, keen to see as many companies as possible adopting the HCI Implementation guidelines to offer HCI schemes to UK employers," said Rick Skett, Intel's UK and Ireland director.

"It's clear we are looking at a huge opportunity for both UK businesses and UK employees and are delighted that companies like HP also see this opportunity".

Hewlett Packard predicted the scheme could boost home computer ownership by 10%. This would mean about 1.25 million UK children would have access to a PC for the first time, it said.

A similar scheme in Sweden increased home computer ownership by 35% in only four years.

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07 Aug 03  |  Education

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