Older People's Use and Nonuse of the Internet in Sweden

Peter Anderberg, Lisa Skär, Linda Abrahamsson, Johan Sanmartin Berglund

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14 Citeringar (Scopus)


The use of the internet has considerably increased over recent years, and the importance of internet use has also grown as services have gone online. Sweden is largely an information society like other countries with high reported use amongst European countries. In line with digitalization development, society is also changing, and many activities and services today take place on the internet. This development could potentially lead to those older persons who do not use the internet or do not follow the development of services on the internet finding it difficult to take part in information and activities that no longer occur in the physical world. This has led to a digital divide between groups, where the older generations (60+), in particular, have been affected. In a large study of Sweden's adult population in 2019, 95 percent of the overall population was said to be internet users, and the corresponding number for users over 66 years of age was 84%. This study shows that the numbers reported about older peoples' internet use, most likely, are vastly overestimated and that real use is significantly lower, especially among the oldest age groups. We report that 62.4% of the study subjects are internet users and that this number most likely also is an overestimation. When looking at nonresponders to the questionnaire, we find that they display characteristics generally attributed to non-use, such as lower education, lower household economy, and lower cognitive functioning.

TidskriftInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
StatusPublicerad - 2020-dec.-04
Externt publiceradJa

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