Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Chinese Web Users Slow To Buy, Quick To Have Fun

The typical Chinese Internet user is under 30 years old and single, and prefers to use the Web for instant messaging and entertainment, a study released Thursday showed.

The majority of surfers in the world's second largest Internet population are also mistrustful of buying goods on the Internet, a result of the difficulty it is in China to return goods, a researcher said.

The biannual survey of Web users was conducted by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, a government think tank. The study was funded by the Markle Foundation in the United States, which released the study at a briefing on China sponsored by the Brookings Institution.

The door-to-door survey in five Chinese cities -- Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Changsha -- found that 8 percent of Chinese, or 103 million, used the Internet, and nearly half use broadband. In the United States, 54 percent of online adults access the Internet over broadband at home, according to Harris Interactive.

With such a small portion of the Chinese population online, the country is still in the early adopter stage, with typical users in their 20s, single, employed, living in urban areas and having higher than average levels of income and education.

  • 1