How Our Internet Habits Have Changed During the Lockdown Era?
Covid 19 pandemic affected us all and drastic measures are taken to reduce the effect of the pandemic that significantly impacted the everyday habits including our internet habit. Rural area internet providers reported an increase in the view of local news, all major internet service providers reported an increase in data usage and employers had to send a significant number of employees to work remotely. All sectors of economies, sports, culture are affected.
A direct impact of such changing internet habits is the rise in the number of subscribers of unlimited internet plans. With more data available, a rise in the use of streaming services was also reported, along with other entertainment sources. Here is a brief discussion on how lockdowns changed the way we use the Internet.
Impact of lockdowns on the internet habits
The local news industry is probably the most significant gainer in this era after digital advertising spelled troubled times for them over the last couple of years. More people are visiting regional news sites all over the world to get updates about lockdowns, the latest outbreaks, and other restrictions. Established media brands their readerships skyrocket amid the increased popularity.
Ticket, sports, travel
Due to lockdowns and movement restrictions, entire sports seasons were canceled last year, and the same thing happens into this season as well. Fewer people are visiting ticket booking sites for sports and travel. However, many shows that shifted to virtual platforms still sold out as avid fans bought tickets to online concerts, sports streaming, etc.
Social and video games
Social media and apps fulfilled the gaps of live events. Apart from popular social sites, i.e., Facebook, Reddit, Instagram, and Snapchat, TikTok, and Twitch also reportedly saw a rise in the number of viewers as people looked for ways to stay connected with their friends and family when they cannot meet in person.
Work and collaboration
As offices have moved to the basements and living rooms of your houses, nothing has seen a more drastic impact on internet habits than work and professional collaboration. Meetings have shifted to Zoom, Teams, and Google Hangouts. More employees are collaborating on online applications like Google Productivity Suite and Microsoft Office 365, and Adobe is working on a web version of its editing platform.
Schools have remained shut over the last two years, and teaching has gone virtual on Google Classroom and other private classrooms. Rural area internet service providers have worked their best to keep the “homework gap” in check, providing students in rural areas with reliable internet to complete their assignments on time.
Buying a house is always a challenge. We need to look at different factors such as size of bedrooms, energy rating, location etc. but ever since the pandemic we also started more than ever checking what kind of broadband is available, what internet service providers are there to serve our needs. We usually want fibre internet to be available, preferably FTTH connection. We want to make sure we will be able to relax watching Netflix and comfortably work. Obviously, we can try with wireless mobile provider but unless it’s 5G, we don’t really consider it a good broadband.
Rural Area Internet Service Providers
During the pandemic there was an increase in migrations from urbanised areas of Dublin or Cork to a more rural locations in the countryside. People who never thought they will ever live the city started buying rural houses in Westmeath, Cavan or Kerry. Travelling through the countryside in the past few moths was quite eye opening with hundreds of houses having “sale agreed” signs outside.
Obviously, that move to the coutryside was leveraged by access to internet. Thousands of people decided to make the move because they can work from home. They not only want to work though, they want to enjoy their evenings streaming movies and music. Internet access is now more important for the countryside than ever!
Are we more dependant on Internet Service Providers?
Up until now having unlimited data plan was nice to have but not necessarily something of a must. With pandemic all has changed. We now need to connect through Teams with our colleagues, our teenage kids need to access education via Zoom. Even doctors in the covid era require good Internet.
With changing internet habits, your existing internet plan might not be enough to keep up with the new requirements. Seeing the rise in the dependency on the internet, more internet service providers are extending unlimited rural internet packs at a discounted price.
Contact your ISP for more information on such plans and check if you are eligible for an upgrade.