This report presents analyses of the internet related questions in order to identify the who, what, where, why and how of digital inclusion and exclusion across Wales.

Key points

  • 73% of Welsh households have access to the internet, up from 70% in 2012.
  • 77% of Welsh adults (aged 16 and over) use the internet at home, work or elsewhere. Of the 23% of Welsh adults who do not currently use the internet, the vast majority (85%) have never used the internet – just under 20% of adults in Wales or around 550,000 adults. This group might be considered to be the ‘core digitally disengaged’.
  • In 2012-13 laptops are the most common device used by digitally engaged adults to access the internet, with 76% using this device. Usage of smartphones shows a particular difference between older and younger cohorts, with older age groups having lower levels of smartphone usage.
  • The digitally disengaged are comprised mainly of those who are over 65, relatively comfortable financially, disproportionately likely to have a limiting illness and no qualifications, and to be working in (or, for the retired, have worked in) manual jobs.
  • Of the roughly 20% of adults in Wales who are long-term digitally disengaged, for two-thirds this is due to personal choice (‘digitally isolated’) whilst for one third it is due to some constraint (‘digitally excluded’).
  • Lack of skills is by far the most common barrier to digital engagement for the involuntary digitally excluded: 75% of the barriers to digital engagement cited relate to lack of skills. Adults with no qualifications make up 56% of this group – over 100,000 adults.


Digital inclusion (National Survey for Wales) April 2012 to March 2013
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Siobhan Evans

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