UK Internet users’ biggest fear revealed by new survey

Smart cities are seen as a bigger priority in the UK than two of Europe’s other largest economies with the Internet habits of the nation showing that many feel anxious when not able to get online.

Read more: Smart cities and big data: Is there a limit to what we should know?

Tata Communications’ latest “Connection World II” global report found that over half of all UK Internet users’ biggest fear is not being able to connect to the Internet and it’s something that makes them angry and anxious.

This is dubbed by Tata as FOMO, or fear of missing out, with 62 per cent expressing this feeling when unable to reach the sites they rely upon on a daily basis meaning that usage rates are soaring.

Among 15-35 years olds, 37 per cent admitted using the Internet for six or more hours a day and five per cent of 15-25 year olds [millennials] can’t survive for 15 minutes without an Internet connection.

Despite this, many UK Internet users are still oblivious to how the entirety of the Internet works with 70 per cent unable to distinguish between the World Wide Web invented by Tim Berners-Lee and the Internet.

UK Internet users did show themselves to be knowledgeable when it comes to the cloud with 74 per cent able to point out correctly that information “in the cloud” is actually held in data centres.

Smart cities are a high priority among UK Internet users with 17 per cent expressing that they are looking forward to the innovation compared to just 10 per cent in France and seven per cent of respondents in Germany.

Top of the list of priorities when it comes to innovations is faster downloads with 35 per cent choosing this whereas wearables came out below smart cities with just 15 per cent stating that they are most looking forward to a wider roll out.

Read more: The smart city: What lies behind the slogan?

Tata’s survey captured a total of 9,417 responses on a global basis including 1,770 in the UK to come to its conclusions.

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