May 172014

Mexico, Argentina, Spain and another twenty countries from around the world celebrate today (17 May) as “World Internet Day”.  This seems like the ideal time to review just how “connected” (or not) Mexico’s cybernauts are.

Household survey figures from INEGI, the National Statistics Institute, show 11.1 million homes in Mexico (35.8% of the total) have a computer, but that 14% of these households do not have internet access. About 46 million Mexicans aged six years or older access the internet. Three quarters of all users are under the age of 35.

Digital divide map

Internet traffic flows Credit: Stephen Eick, Bell Labs / Visual Insights, <>)

64% of users utilize the internet for information, 42% as a means of communication, 36% for entertainment, 35% for education and 35.1% for social networking. (These categories are not mutually exclusive.) 43.6% of all users access internet daily, 45.5% weekly and 7.1% less often. In terms of education, 20.2% of all users have completed primary school only, 24.5% junior high and 28.6% senior high, while 23% already have a degree and 2% have postgraduate qualifications.

Data from the Mexican Internet Association (AMIPCI) shows that Mexicans’ acceptance of e-commerce is rising very rapidly. E-commerce was worth around $9.3 billion in 2013, an increase of 41% from a year earlier when the comparable figure was $6.6 billion. Indeed, APIPCI data show that e-commerce has risen at double digit rates for several years. There is still considerable room for growth since the INEGI survey shows that only about 6% of Mexico’s cybernauts currently use the internet to make purchases or pay bills.

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