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© RIA Novosti. Maksim Bogodvid

Russia’s Internet use surges

by Evgeniya Chaykovskaya at 18/04/2012 19:06

Half of Russia’s adult population uses the Internet. Among people under 34, the Internet is the most used media, even ahead of television.

In 2011, the number of daily Internet users in Russia grew by 22 percent to 44.3 million people, 38 percent of Russians over 18 use the Internet daily, Gazeta.ru reported, citing a Public Opinion Fund poll.

Monthly users also increased by 15 percent in the last year, to 57.8 million people, or 50 percent of the adult population, the poll revealed.

Russia now boasts the most Internet users among European countries, and is sixth in the world, according to the TNS media research company. Only China, USA, Japan, India and Brazil have more Internet users. However, Internet penetration in Russia is only 49 percent, less than Europe’s 78 percent.

Almost half of all Internet users (48 percent) are 25- to 45-year olds, this share of users has almost doubled since 2008 (up by 90 percent).

President Dmitry Medvedev said the Russian segment of the Internet “has something to boast about” at a Russian Internet forum – Internet and Business Conference – on Wednesday.

“It is developing very dynamically. You, better than anyone else know, that after last year the .RU zone is practically in fourth place for world ratings of national domains. And Russia is the European leader in the number of the web users, thanks to an increase in growth of users in the regions, which is, of course, especially pleasant.”

Social networks and shopping

The web sites used more often are search engine Yandex, Mail.ru, social networks vKontakte and Odnoklassniki.

Some 30.9 million daily users, access social networks (Odnoklassniki and vKontakte are affiliated with Mail.ru), Vedomosti reported.

On average, Russian users spend 13 hours a month on social networks, compared to 5.9 hours a month in other countries.

The volume of Internet trading increased by 30 percent in 2011, and about 14 million users shop online at least once a year.

Online games are also popular in Russia, with 38 million active players in 2011.

Most Russians use computers for Internet browsing, one in five uses a mobile device to go online, half of them smart phones, and one in 15 uses a tablet.

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