Social networks : a daily activity for 62 % of Belgian Internet users

ICT usage in households

ICT usage in households

More than half of Belgians1 use social networks at least once a day. This is the case for 80 % of the 16-24 years old. This is what emerged from the latest results of the survey on ICT usage in households organised every year by Statbel, the Belgian statistical office. This survey allows us to better understand what Internet users2 (the 88 % of Belgians having used the Internet in the three months preceding the interview) do on the web.

  • For 87 % of them, the Internet is a daily activity.
  • 92 % use it to communicate via emails.
  • 83 % use social networks, and 62 % do so on a daily basis.
  • 84 % look for information on goods or services.
  • 76 % use online banking services and 40 % use online payment systems like PayPal.
  • 64 % reads information from online newspapers.
  • 59 % look for information regarding health (66 % for women and 53 % for men).
  • More than half of them use the Internet for travelrelated activities, whether to book the transport (32 %) or the accommodation (33 %), or for other services or information (28 %).
  • 46 % stream music and 48 % watch pictures or videos.

6 Belgians out of 10 buy on the Internet

60 % of Belgians say they have ordered goods or services on the Internet during the 12 months preceding the interview.

Half of the population placed their last order in the last three months. 8 % of these persons have placed 10 orders or more and 45 % have made maximum 2 purchases. The total value of the purchases made on the Internet over the last three months ranges between 100 and 500 euros for 27 % of the buyers, and 8 % spend 1,000 euros or more.


73 % of the resident population in Belgium3 have used a smartphone in the past three months. This proportion substantially decreases according to the age of respondents. From 32 % for the 65-74 to...92 % for the 16-24.


Hyper-connected youth?

98 % of the 16-24 have used the Internet during the last three months. Besides social networks, that more than 80 % visit every day, two thirds of these young Internet users (16-24) chat via instant messaging or watch pictures or videos online. 70 % stream music, while half of them download music. And when they want to know more about a subject, they check a wiki (62 %) or go elsewhere on the Internet (48 %).

44 % of these young Internet userse download games or their updates, and 46 % of them play online games, whether connected with other persons (35 %) or not (36 %).

Storing data on the cloud has become a common reflex for them, who are 53 % to make use of online storing spaces compared to "only" 38 % of the total Internet users.


1 The term “Belgians” refers to inhabitants of Belgium aged from 16 to 74.

2 TInhabitants of Belgium aged from 16 to 74 who have used the Internet in the last three months.

3 TAged from 16 to 74.