Web Users Will Pay for Digital Content

The days of "free" are seemingly coming to a rapid end according to survey results released last week by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

Nearly two-thirds of internet users (65%) have paid to download or access some kind of online content from the internet, ranging from music to games to news articles.  As one might imagine, music, software, and applications are the most popular content types that internet users have paid to access or download, although the range of paid online content is seemingly quite varied.

The average expense for users choosing to pay for content was approximately $47 per month for material they have downloaded or accessed, including both subscription (an average of $12 per month) and individual file access (an average of $22 per month). However according to the survey results, some high-end users at the extreme end of the scale pull the average higher, with most purchasers spending about $10 per month.

Concerning methods of accessing online content, the majority of the internet users pay for subscription services (23%), versus downloading an individual file (16%), or accessing streaming content (8%).