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Truespeed survey reveals lifetime of internet possibilities but ongoing broadband frustration in the South West

Adults living in the South West will spend, on average, the equivalent of more than four years of their lives streaming TV shows and films online and just over three years on video calls for work, a study has found.

A typical adult will also spend two years of their lives online shopping and a further three years on social media.

Streaming music accounts for another three years – the equivalent of 52 minutes a day – while checking emails amounts to a total of two years and four months over the average adult lifetime.

As a result, the national poll of 2,000 adults found 73 per cent consider the internet to be part of their daily life. And 49 per cent couldn’t imagine going a whole day without it.

Evan Wienburg, CEO of Bath-based Truespeed, the ultrafast full fibre broadband provider, which commissioned the study, said: “It’s incredible to see how our internet time adds up when you consider all the different activities we use it for.

“The internet has become so ingrained in our day-to-day lives, that many of us don’t realise just how much we rely on it. It has become almost impossible to function without it.”

The study found that adults in the South West region are logging onto the internet at least four times a day to check their emails and social media.

It also emerged that 45 per cent are already online by 8am on an average day, while 20 per cent don’t log off until after 11pm.

Although mobile phones (68 per cent) are most regularly used to access the internet, 53 per cent use laptops and 41 per cent opt for their smart TVs.

More than six in 10 (66 per cent) of South West respondents rely on the internet for banking while 52 per cent use it to keep up with the latest news.

Over half (56 per cent) rely on the internet for shopping, while one in four (25%) spend time internet daydreaming on dream holiday and luxury property websites.

And 55 per cent believe they will only become more reliant on the internet over the next few years.

Despite the heavy reliance on the world wide web, only around a third of adults in the South West (33 per cent) have very reliable broadband.

And 42 per cent of those polled via OnePoll experience problems with their connection at least once a week – wasting on average 12 minutes a day waiting for online applications or documents to load online.

The South West is only prepared to wait up to 20 seconds on average for something to load on the internet before losing patience.

Evan Wienburg of Truespeed added: “In this internet age, we can get most things in an instant without really having to think about it.

“To keep pace with people’s internet expectations, which are only going to continue to rise, we need to ensure our broadband is reliable and up to the job for our internet lifetime.”

The top 10 activities and the time an average person spends doing them in the internet in their lifetime are:

  • Watching TV shows/films – 4 years and 2 months
  • Live streaming sports – 3 years and 3 months
  • Playing video games – 3 years and 2 months
  • Online dating – 3 years and 1 month
  • Making work video calls – 3 years
  • Listening to podcasts and audio books – 2 years and 9 months
  • Downloading music – 2 years and 9 months
  • Online classes and tutorials – 2 years and 9 months
  • Using social media – 2 years and 9 months
  • Watching YouTube videos – 2 years and 5 months

Founded in 2014, Truespeed is based in Bath and delivers full fibre broadband to hard to reach homes and businesses. By building a brand new infrastructure, the firm is able to deliver 10 gigabit-capable full fibre broadband directly into premises, providing a high-performance, highly reliable connection, and future-proofed connectivity. In 2017, Truespeed secured a £75 million investment from Aviva Investors. To learn more visit

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