There are almost 1.7 million regular Internet users in Belgium, according to research conducted by InSites, which found a sharp rise in the number of home connections in Belgium.
This rise does not necessarily mean people are using the Internet more frequently, however. InSites found the high cost of telecommunications and insufficient local Internet services and information remain a major stumbling block. Thus, half of the number of Belgians who have access to the Net do not make use of it on a regular basis. More over, one in three never use it. By 2003, InSites still expects one in three Belgians to be surfing the Net regularly.
The research, conducted at the beginning of May, found that 25 percent of Belgians have an Internet connection at home. Forty-seven percent of the homes in Belgium now have a PC. The most popular sites on the Internet among home users in Belgium are entertainment and news sites, along with travel sites, computer sites, and music sites. One in three work surfers and 54 percent of home surfers visit news sites. One in five home users visits shopping sites, and just as many visit sites with adult content.
The most popular Internet activity in Belgium is sending email, with 83 percent of surfers doing this on a regular basis. One quarter of Internet users have engaged in chatting over the Internet. Only 2 percent of Belgian Internet users own a WAP mobile access device.
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