Cisco Survey: Internet is a Necessity, Just Like Water, Food, Air, and Shelter

Paul Lilly

Just how vital has the Internet become to everyday life? For some, it's just as important as any of the basic needs, including water, food, air, and shelter. And for others, the Internet doesn't rank as an absolute necessity like any of those things, but it comes awfully close, according to an online survey of nearly 3,000 adults.

Cisco pinged 1,441 college students ranging in age from 18-24 years old, and 1,412 full-time, non-IT employees between the ages of 21-29 years to find out where the Internet fits in with their lives. Turns out it plays a really big role. More than half of the college sample said they couldn't live without the Internet, as it is an integral part of their daily lives, a viewpoint shared by more than 60 percent of those working non-IT jobs.

Nearly a third (32 percent) of college students polled said the Internet is just as important to them as water, food, air, and shelter, with another 49 percent indicating that basic needs take precedence, but that the Internet is nearly as important. Those sentiments were echoed in the workforce with nearly identical numbers. Needless to say, the Internet also ranked higher than social activities, except in France, the only country where college students would rather go out on dates than use the Internet.

You can read the full report here (PDF) .

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