These countries spend the most time online

Ruth C. | March 28, 2023

Undoubtedly, we spend a significant portion of our day online. But just how much? 

According to data presented by the Atlas VPN team, the average time spent browsing the internet in 2022 was 397 minutes (6 hours and 37 minutes) per day. It equates to an astonishing 2,415 hours yearly, or nearly 30% of our time.

However, there is some good news as daily online time actually decreased by 4.8% or 20 minutes compared to 2021 as we gradually moved past the pandemic.

These figures are derived from data provided by Meltwater, and We Are Social. The data looks at internet usage trends worldwide among internet users aged 16 to 64.  

The time spent online varies significantly from country to country. South Africans are the most internet-addicted, with an average of 578 minutes (9 hours and 38 minutes) spent online each day, three hours more than the global average.

Brazilians are just a little behind, with 572 minutes (9 hours and 32 minutes) devoted to internet usage daily. The Philippines ranked third with an average of 554 minutes (9 hours and 14 minutes) spent online per day, followed by Argentinians and Colombians, both with 541 minutes (9 hours and 1 minute) of daily internet usage.

People in the United States also spend an above-average amount of time online, dedicating 419 minutes (6 hours and 59 minutes) daily to internet browsing — same as people living in Singapore. Meanwhile, Canadians are slightly less generous with their time, spending an average of 395 minutes (6 hours and 35 minutes) online daily. 

In contrast, East Asian countries have one of the lowest average daily internet usages, with Chinese people spending 325 minutes (5 hours and 25 minutes) online, followed by South Korea at 321 minutes (5 hours and 21 minutes), and Japan with only 225 minutes (3 hours and 45 minutes) — the least out of all the countries in the study. The only exception is Taiwan, with an average daily internet usage time of 434 minutes (7 hours and 14 minutes).

Most European countries also spend significantly less time online than the global average. Austrians devote 322 minutes (5 hours and 22 minutes) daily to internet usage, while Germans spend 312 minutes (5 hours and 12 minutes). 

People in Denmark dedicate the least amount of time to being online out of all European countries in the study, with an average of 298 minutes (4 hours and 58 minutes) spent on the internet each day.

Main reasons for using the internet

People spend a significant portion of their lives online, but what exactly do they do there? 

For many, the internet is a vital source of information, with 57.8% reporting that they use it primarily for finding information

Staying connected with loved ones is another significant reason for internet use, with 53.7% listing it as a core activity. Additionally, half of all people (50.9%) turn to the internet to keep up with the latest news and events

Other notable reasons people use the internet include watching videos, TV shows, and movies (49.7%), researching how to do things (47.6%), finding new ideas or inspiration (44.3%), researching products and brands (43.4%), accessing and listening to music (43.2%), as well as filling up spare time and doing general browsing (41%).

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Ruth C.

Ruth C.

Cybersecurity Researcher and Publisher at Atlas VPN. Interested in cybercrime, online security, and privacy-related topics.

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