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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 August 2006, 00:01 GMT 01:01 UK
Britons online '50 days a year'
Broadband
Broadband has changed the way people go online
Britain's 10 million broadband users spend an average of 23.5 hours online each week, equivalent to 50 days of the year, a survey suggests.

Service comparison firm USwitch.com said the survey of 15,323 people revealed that 87% shopped online and 78% did their banking via the web.

However, recent research from regulator Ofcom indicated that broadband users spent just 12 hours online a week.

It said just 12% of users spent more than 25 hours a week online.

The Ofcom research was based on interviews held with adults across the UK while USwitch.com's findings come from an online poll by YouGov, which may favour regular broadband users.

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Chris Williams, USwitch.com broadband product manager said: "The uptake of broadband in the past 18 months has been nothing short of explosive and this will continue especially with the constant innovation in the market."

Some 70,000 homes are now signing up for broadband every week, making it one of the fastest growing consumer products yet.

Graph of net usage
Patterns of behaviour online are beginning to emerge

According to the USwitch.com, survey 40% of people listen to online radio, while 39% of people use broadband to download music.

One in eight people use their broadband connection to make net telephone calls, a sector of the market many analysts feel is set to grow.

Mr Williams said broadband had been boosted with a number of firms offering free broadband connections as part of subscription packages to other services.

Orange, Talk Talk and Sky are among the firms offering free high-speed internet to their subscribers.

"Very soon customers are going to be able to turn around to their provider and say 'Why should I carry on paying for my internet connection?'."




SEE ALSO
Quick guide: Broadband
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02 Aug 06 |  Business
BSkyB joins 'free broadband' war
18 Jul 06 |  Business

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