The Dutch population aged 16-74 years became more skilled in using the internet between 2010 and 2013. The over-65s in particular have made up a lot of ground in terms of online activity. The level of internet skills in the Dutch population is higher than average in the European Union.
Nine in ten Dutch people know how to use a search engine
The most common internet skill in the Dutch population is how to use a search engine, Google for example. Some 92 percent of 16-74-year-olds knew how to use a search engine in 2013. A large majority - 84 percent - also know how to send an e-mail with attached files.
Phone calls via the internet, for example via Skype, have also become more common: this rose from 31 in 2010 to 46 percent in 2013. More people are also sharing media via the internet, music and videos for example: this share rose from 25 to 31 percent.
Internet skills, population aged 16-74 years
More internet skills among over-65s in particular
Internet skills have risen in all age groups, but most strongly among the 65-74-year-olds. In 2010, 57 percent of Dutch over-65s could use the internet, by 2013 this had already risen to 75 percent. Part of the increase is accounted for by more younger people - with more internet experience - entering this age group. But the main reason is that more older people are starting to use the internet. Search engine use, sending e-mails with attached files and phoning via the internet, in particular, all rose in the older age groups between 2010 and 2013.
Internet skills, population aged 65-74 years
High level of internet skills in the Netherlands and Scandinavian EU countries
The Dutch are defter on the internet than the average EU citizen. Thirteen percent of 16-74-year-olds in the Netherlands had a high level of internet skills, 44 percent had an average level, and 36 percent a low level. For the EU as a whole, this is 12 percent, 35 percent and 30 percent respectively.
Together with Denmark, Sweden and Finland, the Netherlands is one of the countries where less than 10 percent of the population have no internet skills. In Romania, Italy and Portugal this is true of over 30 percent of the population. One possible explanation for this may be that people in these countries have less home internet access.
Internet skills in the European Union, population aged 65-74 years, 2013
Jacqueline van Beuningen