Many women across Asia Pacific consider the internet essential to their daily lives. In fact, those who use it are often much more optimistic about the future than non-users.
For those who aren’t online yet, the biggest barrier is a perceived lack of relevancy, as women feel they cannot afford time on the internet or they think there's nothing of interest online. However, many of these women are open to learning about the internet through a friend, family member, or self-study, and they’re most likely to connect to the internet with a smartphone.
As internet usage is growing, there are still more opportunities for women to expand the range of opportunities that they take advantage of, such as finding work, using productivity apps, or other activities that could improve their daily lives.
However, women are highly interested in online education. Those who want to be self-employed are especially eager to learn, and popular subjects include business, finance, and administration.
As more women discover the full potential of the internet, they will be able to gain confidence, find inspiration, learn new things, and connect with each other, creating their own opportunities to grow and succeed.
Full potential of the internet yet to be explored by users and non-users
Presenting tangible, relatable benefits is key to bringing more women online. The internet has become indispensable for many women. Users see its benefit and tend to have a more positive outlook for their lives. But more than 30% of non-internet users across the region show little interest in getting online, largely because of a perceived lack of relevant online content. Among women who are interested in learning how to use the internet, they prefer to learn in a casual environment with someone they know, or on their own, rather than in a formal classroom setting.
The majority of internet users, both men and women, think the internet is essential for their daily lives.
Once people start using the internet, they see more possibilities for their future than those who do not use the internet.
There are still many non-internet users who are not interested in going online.
|Extremely / Very||21%||8%||6%||4%||4%|
|Moderately / Slightly||45%||44%||49%||61%||24%|
|Not at all||34%||48%||46%||35%||72%|
Common barriers preventing women from getting online are a lack of relevance and time constraints.
- Not interested in anything online:36%
- No time:26%
- Can’t afford it :21%
- Not interested in anything online:42%
- No time:35%
- Prefer time with family / friends:34%
- Not interested in anything online:29%
- No time:27%
- Prefer time with family / friends:23%
- No time:45%
- No need to use internet for work:37%
- Not confident using a computer / smartphone:33%
- No time:53%
- Not interested in anything online:48%
- No need:47%
Across the region, women who are interested in getting online are more receptive to learning about the internet in more informal settings instead of taking classes. They prefer to learn through friends or family, or on their own. And they are most likely to connect with a smartphone.
|Friend or family||45%|
|On my own||32%|
|Smartphone||Feature phone||Computer||Others||Don’t think I will use the internet|
Room for growth in internet usage beyond communication and media consumption
Overall, internet usage has increased along with the rapid growth of mobile access across the region in the past few years. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean the range of online activities has expanded. Users mainly rely on the internet for communication, media consumption and social media. Fewer people (especially women) use it for work, learning or managing daily tasks, so there's an opportunity to improve productivity through skills training.
Men and women connect to the internet with equal frequency in most markets, except in India and Indonesia, where women are online less than men.
There's a significant increase in internet access via smartphones in the past few years, especially in India and the Philippines.
- Social: 65%
- Media consumption:59%
- Administrative tasks:35%
Not everyone thinks work-life balance is improving
Views on whether work-life balance has improved differ among working women across the region.
While 33% of working women across the region think work-life balance is better than a year ago, Korean and Japanese women see much less improvement.
Women still handle most household responsibilities, with limited support
The majority of women and men alike believe that household and childcare duties should be shared by both genders. However, in reality, primary responsibility goes to women across APAC. There is also a gap in how people perceive that they’re sharing these responsibilities, as more men than women believe that they split household duties between themselves and their partners.
Regarding the role of the internet at home, women in most countries see it as helpful in children’s education, but less relevant for managing day-to-day household duties.
|Children’s education||Manage my day to day household|
Women seek ways to remain in the workforce, despite challenges
Most women across the region aspire to contribute economically outside of their home, and believe more strongly than men that work opportunities should be equally available to all. However, women are more likely to see a gap between belief and reality, especially in Korea, Japan and Australia.
|“People should have an equal chance to obtain a job regardless of gender.”||Korea||Japan||Australia||APAC|
|“People do have an equal chance to obtain a job regardless of gender.”||Korea||Japan||Australia||APAC|
|Full-time for an organization||Part-time for an organization||Self-employed|
Many women see the internet as a good place for learning
Among internet users, those who are planning to be self-employed are more likely to consider online courses.
|All internet users||Internet users who intend to be self-employed|
Online courses in business, finance, and administration are popular with women in many markets.
- Education support:25%
- Health & Nutrition:18%
- Education support:33%
- Education support:35%
- Health & Nutrition:31%
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