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Official statistics of Latvia
Official Statistics Portal of Latvia
Press release

The share of regular Internet users has reached 90 %

According to the annual survey on use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in households carried out by the Central Statistical Bureau (CSB), share of households with Internet in 2022 has reached 91.4  %1.

As compared to 2021, Internet access in households has increased by 0.3 percentage points. Mostly internet is available in Riga and Kurzeme – in 93.6 % and 93.3 % of households, respectively, followed by Pierīga – 92.4 %, Vidzeme – 91 %, Zemgale – 89.5 %. In Latgale region this indicator is lower – 84.8 %. Internet is available in 92.8 % of urban households (over a year, rise of 0.6 percentage points), and 88 % in rural households (drop of 1.2 percentage points). Also, mostly Internet is available in households with children – 99.2 %, while in households without children – 90.1 %.

In 2022, as compared to 2021, the share of regular Internet users (use Internet at least once a week) increased by 0.3 percentage points, reaching 90 %. The largest share of regular Internet users is among population with higher education (97.6 %), while among population with secondary education – 87.4 %, but among population with basic education – 78.6 %.

The largest share of regular Internet users is in Riga (92.1 %) and Pierīga (91.8 %). In Zemgale and Kurzeme it is similar, 89.9 % and 89.6 %, respectively, in Vidzeme – 87.9 %, but in Latgale – 83.7 %. Urban population use Internet more often (91.3 %) than urban population (87.1 %).

In age group 16 – 24 years old 99.6 % of young people use Internet on a regular basis, in age group 25 – 54 years – 96.8 %, but in age group 55 – 74 years – 75.9 % of population.

Population use the Internet for various activities. Most popular of them, the same as in previous years, are internet banking and sending/receiving e-mails, which is used by 82.1 % and 78 % of population, but sending messages in texting apps is used by 77.6 % of population. Females search online for health-related topics more than males (51.1 % and 32.8 %, respectively), but males more commonly than females play games online (20.2 % and 12.1 %, respectively) or download them (14.1 % and 6 %, respectively).

The largest differences between urban and rural population appear in data on watching videos on sharing sites and access personal medical information. 66.6 % of urban population and 54 % of rural population are watching videos on sharing sites, but to access personal medical information online is used by 41.5 % of urban population and 29.6 % of rural population.

Differences can also be observed in the breakdown by education level – people with higher education are more likely to access personal medical information online (57.2 %), use e-mail more often (94.1 %) and search online for health-related topics (58.7 %), while people with basic education do that less often – 18.9 %, 59.5 %, 24.5 %, respectively.

Use of Internet also differs by age groups of population. Most popular activities of 16– 24 years old young people include participating in social networks (94.7 %), sending messages in texting apps (94 %), as well as internet banking (91.8 %). Most popular activities of 65– 74 years old seniors include internet banking (51.3 %), reading online news sites/newspapers/news magazines (48.5 %) and sending messages in texting apps (42.2 %). The largest differences between young people and seniors appear in the data on listening to music online – 79.1 % of young people have indicated that they carry out such activity, while the share of such population in the senior group is 12.7 %.

In the survey of 2022, the range of questions about contacting or interacting with public authorities over the Internet by individuals was expanded. 48.6 % of population indicated that they accessed information that is being stored on them by public authorities (e.g., in the Register of Natural persons, www.latvija.lv, www.e-veseliba.lv), 32.3 % of population downloaded or printed forms from websites or applications of public authorities, in turn 25.7 % requested official certificates or documents from public authorities. More than a half (52.2 %) of population indicated that they have submitted a tax return themselves, while 16.2 % received help from another person to do it.

The share of population who bought goods or services on the Internet has remained at the level of the previous year. If in 2021 share of such population comprised 61.6 %, in 2022 it is 61.7 % (rise of 0.1 percentage point).

Mostly population2 used Internet to purchase clothes, shoes or accessories (56.3 %), deliver food from restaurants or other catering enterprises (25.2 %), electrical equipment or household appliances (23.6 %), cosmetics, beauty products (20 %).

Females purchased clothes, shoes or accessories more often than males (69.7 % and 39.3 %, respectively) and cosmetics, beauty products (29.4 % and 8 %, respectively), while males bought electrical equipment or household appliances more often than females (33.6 % and 15.7 %, respectively) and computers, tablet computers or mobile phones and accessories (25.1 % and 10.5 %, respectively).

Both young people (16–24 years) and seniors (65–74 years) used Internet the most to purchase clothes, shoes or accessories (65.2 % and 26.9 %, respectively), in turn second most often purchase made by young people (33.2 %) was delivery of food from restaurants or other catering enterprises, while for seniors that were furniture, home accessories or gardening products (25.2 %).

This year for the second time questions on the use of Internet of Things was included in the survey. Thus the share of population using internet-connected thermostats, energy meters or other devices regulating energy has increased from 3.4 % in 2020 to 4.7 % in 2022. Over the two-years time use of alarms, smoke detectors or other security systems connected to the Internet has grown from 4.3 % to 5.4 %. The use of household appliances connected to the Internet, such as robot vacuum cleaners, refrigerators, stoves, has grown most rapidly (by 5.2 percentage points) – in 2020, 3.4 % of the population used such devices, but in 2022 – 8.6% of the population.

The survey of 2022 for the first time included questions on the sustainable use of ICT, that is, on the behaviour of population3 in replacing worn-out ICT devices. The results show that 71.4 % of the population continue to keep old mobile phones or smartphones, 50.9 % – laptops or tablets, but 27.1 % of the population – desktop (stationary) computers. In turn 16 % sold mobile phone or smartphone, 10.6 % – desktop computer, 11.6 % – laptops or tablets. 6.4 % of mobile phones or smartphones were handed over to an electronic waste collection or recycling point, while 2 % were thrown into household waste, laptops or tablets – by 4.5 % and 1.2 %, respectively, and desktop computers by – 5.9 % and 2.2 %, respectively.

Actions with worn-out ICT device; 2022

(as per cent of Internet users during the last 3 months)

 

Mobile telephone or smartphone

Laptop or tablet

Desktop (stationary) computer

It is still in my household

71.4

50.9

27.1

It was sold or given away

16.0

10.6

11.6

It was handed over to an electronic waste collection or recycling point (also includes cases where the device was handed over to a dealer for disposal)

6.4

4.5

5.9

It was thrown into the household waste

2.0

1.2

2.2

Such a device has never been purchased or is still in use

3.1

30.7

48.6

Other actions

1.1

2.2

4.6

When buying mobile phones, smartphones, tablets, laptops or desktop (stationary) computers, citizens3 mention the price of these devices (67.2 %) and hard disk properties (57.3 %) as the most important features. Energy efficiency is mentioned as an important feature by 20.3 % of the population, while 20 % indicated that eco-design of the device is important to them (for example, is the product durable, can it be improved and repaired, does it’s repair require few materials, environmentally friendly materials are used in the packaging of the device, etc.).

Annual survey on the use of ICT in households was carried out in the first half of 2022 with co-financing of European Union. Aim of the project is to acquire qualitative and internationally comparable statistical information on the use of ICT, and it covered 5 815 individuals.

Methodological explanations:

1 Fixed broadband connection or mobile broadband connection is available to at least one household member.

2 Of the number of population having ordered goods or services for personal use over the Internet during the last three months.

3 Of the number of population having used Internet during the last three months.

Media requests:
Communication Section
E-pasts: media@csp.gov.lv
Phone: +371 67366621, +371 27880666

More information on the data:
Pēteris Nalivaiko
Trade and Services Statistics Section
E-mail: Peteris.Nalivaiko@csp.gov.lv
Phone: +371 67366869

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