Internet subscribers pass 10 million mark. The Australian Bureau of Statistics this morning reported that internet subscribers in Australia climbed to 10.4 million in the six months to December 2010. That’s an increase of nearly 10% in the past six months.

The 10.4 million figure does not include internet connections through mobile handsets. At the end of December 2010, there were 8.2 million of those mobile handset subscribers in Australia — an increase of 21% from June 2010. The volume of data downloaded via mobile handsets over the three months ending 31 December 2010 was 4,029 Terabytes.

The ABS figures, collected from ISP’s with more than 1000 active subscribers, show:

  • The phasing out of dial-up internet connections continued with 93% of internet connections being non dial-up. Australians also continued to access increasingly faster download speeds, with 81% of access connections offering a download speed of 1.5Mbps or greater.
  • Digital subscriber line (DSL) continued to be the major technology for connections, accounting for 43% of the total internet connections, followed closely by mobile wireless (40% of total internet connections). However, the DSL percentage share has decreased since June 2010 when DSL represented 44% of the total connections.
  • Mobile wireless (excluding mobile handset connections) was the fastest growing internet access technology in actual numbers, increasing from 2.8 million in December 2009 to 4.2 million in December 2010.

The White House keeps a secret. I assure you this is not a joke: NPR records that President Obama was presented with an award for his efforts to make government more transparent on Monday. If it seems a bit late to report that news on a Thursday, says the broadcaster,  it is — but the award was kept secret for much of this week. The award was presented “behind closed doors with no media coverage or public access allowed,” the AP reports. The meeting was also reportedly not on the president’s official schedule.

No ban on that red lemonade. No doubt the debate abut food dyes will continue unabated but the American Food and Drugs Administration has ruled that food dyes do not cause hyperactivity in children.

Oil rises again. Crude oil prices reached a new high point for the year overnight.

Luckily for Australian motorists the Aussie dollar did as well! That will spare us some of the inflationary pressures about to come.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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