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Paid streaming surges in the UK, driven by Netflix

Nearly half of British adults have used a paid online TV streaming service in the past three months, according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS). That’s up from 29% from 2016 − the last time the nation’s habits were assessed.

In all, 46% of adults have used the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime Video or Now TV in the last 90 days, while the number who had watched anything on YouTube jumped from 47% to 62%.

Related: Netflix vs Amazon Prime Instant Video

Other major jumps in this period include listening to streamed music (up 9% to 58%), selling goods or services (up 7% to 25%) and using internet banking (up 9% to 69%).

Despite these big leaps, however, boring old email remains the most common activity on the internet, with 84% of adults having sent or received messages in the last three months.

The change in behaviour doesn’t correspond to a higher uptake in internet access in people’s homes, as that figure has stayed static at 90%. However, 2018 does mark the first time that the ONS found every house with children that was surveyed had some kind of internet access.

There were some interesting gender-based splits in the ONS’ findings too. Women were more likely to use the internet for social networking of some kind, the report found, with 69% of women using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or the like compared to 60% of men. Researching health-related information also proved more popular among women (59%) than men (50%).

Related: Spotify vs Apple Music

YouTube use, however, is more popular with men (69%) than women (56%). Men are also more commonly found downloading and playing games, with 36% of men compared to 26% of women.

Do these figures surprise you? Would you expect them to be higher or lower? Let us know on Twitter @TrustedReviews.