One in Ten (9%) Canadians Do Not Have Internet Access at Home

Relevance (49%) Trumps Cost (30%), As Main Reason for Canadians Not Subscribing to Internet at Home

Friday, December 11, 2015

Toronto, ON – Nine in Ten (91%) Canadians have access or subscribe to the Internet at home, according to a new Ipsos syndicated study entitled Participation in the Digital Economy.

Less than one in ten (9%) Canadians report that they do not subscribe to or have access to the Internet at home, with 5% saying they do not access the Internet at all, 2% are accessing elsewhere outside the home, and 2% access by mobile only.

Canadians who do not subscribe to or have access to the Internet skew older (over 55 years old), and are typically less educated. They also, on average, have significantly lower household incomes (average - $44K) and are more likely to live in rural areas/towns than those who access or subscribe to the internet at home.

No Access to the Internet at Home is More About Relevance than Cost…

For the 9% of Canadians who do not have access or subscribe to the Internet at home, relevance (49%) is the main reason for not subscribing to the Internet at home, followed by cost (30%), usability issues (22%), and lack of availability or access (8%). In fact, most (70%) non-subscribers do not mention cost at all as a barrier.

The digital divide is commonly thought to be driven primarily by income inequality but, in fact, lack of affordability is only a barrier for a fraction of Canadians. Instead, a more salient issue is that of relevance, i.e. those who see the value of the Internet in their lives are willing to pay for it, and those who don’t are not. In fact, 30% of those who don’t access at home subscribe to a print newspaper and/or print magazine, the same incidence as the general population.

Those who do not subscribe to the Internet cite motivation (36%), such as not seeing the value or not liking to be on the Internet, as their key barrier to taking full advantage of the Internet, while 21% cite the lack of opportunity, such as lack of access or inability to afford it, and 18% say it’s about capability, such as lacking the skills or knowledge on how to use or fully use the Internet.


To watch the presentation of these findings, please click here.

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos syndicated study conducted between October 7 and October 26, 2015. For this survey, a sample of 1,250 people living in Canada, 18 years or older (stratified n=1000 who access or subscribe to the Internet at home, and n=250 who do not) was interviewed by telephone (70% landline and 30% cell phone) and selected by Random Digit Dialing (RDD). Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a margin of error. In this case, the poll is accurate to within +/ - 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadian adults been polled. The margin of error will be wider among subsets of the population (non-subscribers n=250 +/- 6.2 percentage points). All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Mike Colledge
President, Canadian Public Affairs
Ipsos Public Affairs
(613) 688-8971

About Ipsos in Canada

Ipsos is Canada's market intelligence leader, the country's leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos employs more than 600 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos' marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group.

To learn more, please visit

About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. Ipsos ranks third in the global research industry.

With offices in 86 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across six research specializations: advertising, customer loyalty, marketing, media, public affairs research, and survey management.

Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,669.5 ($2,218.4 million) in 2014.

Visit to learn more about Ipsos’ offerings and capabilities.

Related Links

Selected Report Findings
Infographic and Blog Post
Product Sheet

One in Ten (9%) Canadians Do Not Have Internet Access at Home


Mike Colledge
President / Président, Canada
Ipsos Public Affairs
+1 613 688 8971
Grace Tong
Senior Research Manager

Ipsos Public Affairs