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Silver Surfers Fuel Online Growth

5 July 2010 by Stephen McNamara

Proving that silver surfers are not necessarily inhibited by technology if the content is attractive enough, those aged over 50 now account for more 31 per cent of the total people online.

As grandparents join social media sites as a new way to connect with their family and friends, the presence of over 50s online has resulted in a five per cent increase in the total number of UK online users.

With 14 million images uploaded to Facebook every day, social networking sites have become a valuable resource connecting older generations with the outside world.

Behind community sites, the 50-plus internet audience is also interested in health and videos online, with RealAge and Flixxy possessing the largest market share, according to the recent study.

In the research by UKOM almost two million more Britons were shown to have gone online since May 2009, totaling 38.8million. While men over 50 were found to show the largest growth, accounting for 38 per cent of all new users, women over 50 represented just 15 per cent of new users followed closely by women aged 21- 34 (14 per cent) and females aged between 12-20 (12 per cent).

As this study demonstrates the increasing value of the Grey Pound, a number of industries, in particular travel, are already showing a desire to take advantage.