IDC Reveals Home Office Internet Use Reaches Record High

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., Sept. 15, 1998– Home office households with Internet access have reached record numbers, according to a new report from International Data Corporation (IDC) in Framingham, Mass. The report, Home Offices on the Internet, reports the number of home offices with Internet access has increased by over five million in the past 12 months to reach 17.5 million. This means home offices now account for 68 percent of all U.S. households currently on the Internet.

Home offices have continued to grow in number over the past year, with 37.7 million households supporting some form of home office activity. "Home office growth and increased PC penetration have set the stage for the Internet explosion," said Raymond Boggs, director of home office research for IDC. "Both home-based businesses and corporate home workers are turning to the Internet as never before."

Three critical applications will continue to drive home-office Internet use:

Communications: E-mail today is what fax communication was ten years ago. Home-based businesses must have Internet access if they wish to be taken seriously by corporate customers. For after hours workers or telecommuters, e-mail is an especially important way to stay in touch with work colleagues.

Information Gathering: Whether it's reviewing internal company documents or checking out competitors' Web sites, the Internet is now an important conduit to vital information for both home-based businesses and corporate home workers.

Electronic Commerce: While e-commerce is only just beginning to be embraced by home-based businesses, home page intentions are high. The Internet is helping home businesses reach new customers and strengthen relations with current ones. As e-commerce capabilities grow both accessible and affordable, home-based business will make increasing use of Internet-based electronic transactions.

Growth of Home Office Internet Use

1997 1998 Growth %

Home Office Households 34.7M 37.3M 7.5%

Home Office Households with PCs 22.0M 26.3M 19.5%

Home Office Households on the Internet 12.1M 17.5M 44.6%

Source: International Data Corporation, 1998

IDC's report, Home Offices on the Internet, is available for purchase by contacting Janis Dempsey at 800-343-4952. Reports can also be ordered on IDC's web site (http://www.idc.com). For additional information on IDC's Home Office continuous information research program, please contact Patrick Gorman at 508-935-4369 or via email (pgorman@idc.com).

About IDC

Headquartered in Framingham, Mass., International Data Corporation provides IT market research and consulting to more than 3,900 high-technology customers around the world. With a global network of 375 analysts in more than 40 countries, IDC is the industry's most comprehensive resource on worldwide IT markets, products, vendors, and geographies.

IDC/LINK, an IDC subsidiary, researches and analyzes the home computing market, leading-edge technologies in telecommunications and new media, and the convergence of computing and consumer electronics.

IDC's World Wide Web site (http://www.idc.com) contains additional company information and recent news releases, and offers full-text searching of recent research.

IDC is a division of International Data Group, the world's leading IT media, research, and exposition company.

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