Britain leads world in computer ownership

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The Independent Online
Britain may lag behind its competitors in sport and maths but it leads the world in one field - computer-ownership.

According to a survey published today, Britain comes top out of 17 countries for the proportion of schools with computers.

It also tops the table, along with Belgium, for the highest proportion of home computers. One in three homes now has a computer compared, for instance, with the United States where the figure is 28 per cent.

One in five computer-owning households is connected to the Internet, says the survey commissioned by Olivetti Personal Computers which covered 14 European countries, the United States, Canada and Japan.

A survey of 2,000 British children, which formed part of the study, found that there has been a big increase in computer ownership in households with children. About two-thirds of these use a computer compared with 45 per cent two years ago.

In almost one in five households with children there are at least two computers.

Britain is the only country with at least one computer in every primary school. In Japan the figure is 70 per cent and in Germany less than 10 per cent.

In secondary schools there are twice as many computers for every 100 students as in Germany. Britain is even further ahead of Japan, France and Italy.