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NZers Register High Home Internet Access

NEWS RELEASE

NEW ZEALANDERS REGISTER HIGH HOME INTERNET ACCESS IN GLOBAL DATA


Largest-Ever Global Measurement Of Internet Penetration Confirms Kiwis’ Enthusiasm for the Web

Auckland –September 8, 2000 – As worldwide Internet use continues to mushroom, New Zealanders rank high for the numbers of ways they can access the web from home, according to a world-first examination of Internet use in Europe, the Asia Pacific region and North America, released by Nielsen//NetRatings today.
Across 20 countries in the regions it studied, Nielsen//NetRatings, the world’s fastest growing Internet audience measurement service, found more than 295 million people had Internet access from a home PC.
Or more accurately, in New Zealand’s case, from home PCs plural -- as the data showed that in this country people have a relatively high number of multiple access points within their homes.
Multiple sources are most common in Switzerland, where close to half the households with access connect through more than one device. But almost no house in France has access via more than one source. And in the Asia Pacific region, where most households also have only one source at home for access, New Zealand stood out with nearly a quarter of households having two or more devices with access to the Internet.
“This information confirms that ownership of PCs in New Zealand is high, “ said Brian Milnes, ACNielsen eRatings.com Managing Director Pacific. “It could also be an indicator that a lot of people are choosing to take laptops from the office with them so that they can continue working at home, “ he said.
New Zealanders also ranked high in their enthusiasm to use the Internet to browse for purchases, with 23% of Kiwi users accessing the Web to browse for products. In this, Kiwis ranked second along with Australia and Norway, behind the Danes who emerged as the world’s keenest on-line browsers, with 31% of users accessing the Web for this information.
Nielsen//NetRatings is a service provided by ACNielsen eRatings.com (a venture between ACNielsen Corp., NYSE: ART and NetRatings, Inc., Nasdaq: NTRT), Nielsen Media Research and NetRatings, Inc.
The findings are from the new Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends service, a subscription service reporting key Internet penetration figures in Europe and Asia Pacific. The Q2 2000 service covers data collected between April and June 2000 across Europe and Asia Pacific, drawn from more than 25,000 surveys conducted using consistent research methodology. The Q2 service covers: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK, Australia, Singapore and New Zealand. In Q3 2000 the service will expand to provide reports on trends in North America and globally, with continued expansion as additional markets come online.

“Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends brings a powerful new perspective to the growth in Internet access worldwide,” said William Pulver, president of ACNielsen eRatings.com. “Prior to this report, advertisers and marketers had to rely on country-by-country statistics gathered using varying methodologies. With Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends, we can definitively report such valuable information as the number of people and households per country with access to the Internet, their online browsing and purchasing habits and the rates of access at home, work or other locations.”

The Q2 2000 Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends information for Europe reported that across 14 key European markets approximately 82 million people aged two and above have access to the Internet from a home PC.

“The US and Japan are widely recognized as having the largest Internet populations in the world,” said David Day, director of analytics, ACNielsen eRatings.com. “With Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends we see a European penetration figure of 82 million people which equates to one household in five, with more than half -- 56% -- of those people residing in the UK, Germany and Italy. Those three countries are well worth watching in the coming months as they continue to emerge on the global scene.”

In New Zealand, Japan, Australia, and Singapore, approximately 37 million people aged two and above have access to the Internet from a home PC. (See Table 1).

Table 1. Number of People 2+ (In Millions) With Internet Access Via Home PC
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends, Q2 2000
*Canada and Japan: May estimate

Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends also found that in Q2 2000, more people in every country except Switzerland had Internet access at home than at work.

“Rates of access at work are lower than access at home in most countries,” Day said. “This is particularly the case in the Netherlands, where the home access rate is almost twice that of work, unlike Switzerland, where the access rates across both locations are about even. Usage rates at home and work tend to follow the same pattern as access, again except Switzerland, where the proportion of people who have surfed the Internet at work is greater than those who have surfed at home.”

Day also noted that most households with Internet access use only one source to gain access to the Internet. In Europe overall, only 22% of households have access via more than one source. Multiple sources of Internet access are more common in New Zealand,
Table 2. % People 16+ with current access at home or work*
*Among population 16+ in households with fixed line telephone(s)

% Access at Home % Access at Work
Australia 43 28
Austria 29 24
Belgium/Luxembourg 32 20
Denmark 47 35
Finland 43 37
France 13 5
Germany 23 18
Ireland 33 22
Italy 23 13
Netherlands 48 26
New Zealand 44 28
Norway 53 40
Singapore 50 22
Spain 14 12
Sweden 49 36
Switzerland 39 41
UK 42 24
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends, Q2 2000

At an individual level, the adult populations (16+) of Norway, Denmark and Sweden have the highest levels of access to the Internet from any location, including work. In addition, greater proportions of their populations have used the Internet and remain frequent users, more likely to browse the Internet for product and pricing information and registering among the most prolific on-line purchasers. (See Table 3).

Demonstrating the maturity of those markets, around half of the households with Internet access in Norway, Denmark and Sweden have had Internet access at least since 1998. Similarly, among New Zealand, Australia, and Singapore, the Singaporean market is the most mature with a greater proportion of people having gained access to the Internet either in 1998 or prior to 1998.

“The picture in France is interesting because relative to the rest of Europe, Internet penetration both at home and at work are low,” Day said. “One key reason for this is that Minitel – France Telecom’s own information network – has been available in France from the early 80’s and enjoys high levels of penetration both at home and at work. We will continue to see growth in online access in France trailing the rest of Europe while potential online users’ needs are being met elsewhere.

“Finland’s relatively lower penetration rate via home PC compared to the other Nordics is a function of the much lower proportion of households with a fixed telephone line,” Day continued. “Finland has experienced a marked decrease in fixed line telephone penetration in households over recent years, with a corresponding sharp increase in the penetration of mobile telephones. While this has impacted the growth in static Internet access, Finland will be well placed when the anticipated increase in access to the Internet via other devices such as WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) takes off.”

Table 3. % People (16+) Browsing for Products Online and Purchasing, past 6 months*
*Among population 16+ in households with fixed line telephone(s) and who have browsed the Internet for products and pricing

% People Browsing for Products Online % People Purchasing Online
Australia 23 11
Austria 21 10
Belgium/Luxembourg 9 4
Denmark 31 11
Finland 22 9
France 5 2
Germany 18 10
Ireland 10 4
Italy 6 2
Netherlands 18 5
New Zealand 23 8
Norway 23 10
Singapore 14 4
Spain 5 1
Sweden 31 17
Switzerland 23 11
UK 14 9
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends, Q2 2000

Day noted that in Europe, the Nordic countries as a group tended to exhibit the highest levels of online product browsing. However, the UK had the highest browse-to-purchase ratio of all the European countries, with 64% of UK Internet users who have browsed for information and prices about products and services having made a purchase in the past six months. The lowest levels of browsing activity were observed in Belgium/Luxembourg, Italy, France and Spain.

In the Asia Pacific region, browsing for product and price information on the Internet is a more firmly entrenched activity for Australians and New Zealanders than for Singaporeans. On-line purchasing is also more likely to happen in Australia and New Zealand than in Singapore, as nearly a quarter of adults 16 or older in Australia and New Zealand have browsed the Internet for pricing or other information on products and services, and slightly more than one in 10 Australians have then gone on to make a purchase. In Singapore, only 14% of people 16 or older has browsed the Internet for products, with only 4% going on to make a purchase.

Nielsen//NetRatings Global Internet Trends measures more than 30 factors, including: the number of total households and people with Internet access at home or other locations; the demographic breakdown of the home Internet population; home PC ownership; rates of use of home PC’s for connection to the Internet; the period of time when Internet access was acquired in a household or is expected; the number of fixed and mobile telephones per household, and the level of online purchasing.

About Nielsen//NetRatings
Through strategic partnerships between NetRatings, Nielsen Media Research and ACNielsen, the Nielsen//NetRatings audience measurement service collects real-time data from more than 165,000 Internet users around the world. The U.S. panel sample currently consists of 57,000 at-home users and 8,000 at-work users. International panels are under development with over 100,000 at-home users currently being measured. These panels collectively represent the largest media research sample of Internet users in the industry.

Nielsen//NetRatings uses unique technology capable of measuring both Internet use and advertising to provide the most timely, accurate and comprehensive Internet usage data and advertising information in the global marketplace. Nielsen//NetRatings tracks the entire spectrum of Internet user behavior, leveraging proprietary data-collection technology from NetRatings, Nielsen Media Research's 50 years of expertise in research and audience measurement, and ACNielsen’s international leadership in offering market research information covering more than 100 countries. For more information, please visit www.nielsen-netratings.com.

About ACNielsen eRatings.com
ACNielsen eRatings.com is a venture between ACNielsen (NYSE: ART) and NetRatings Inc. (Nasdaq: NTRT). ACNielsen is the world's leading market research firm, offering measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics, consumer attitudes and behavior, and new and traditional media in more than 100 countries, and NetRatings is the leading provider of Internet audience measurement technology and analysis. Through the Nielsen//NetRatings service, ACNielsen eRatings.com is creating the first global service for tracking audiences, advertising and user activity on the Internet in more than 30 countries worldwide.

About NetRatings, Inc.
NetRatings (Nasdaq: NTRT) provides Internet audience measurement and analysis services that enable its customers to make informed decisions regarding their Internet strategies. NetRatings delivers accurate and timely information collected from a representative sample of Internet users and augments it with detailed, flexible reporting and in-depth analyses.

###

Forward Looking Statements: Certain statements contained herein are forward looking. These may be identified by the use of forward-looking words or phrases such as "anticipate," "believe," "expect," "could," "should," "plan," "estimated," "potential," "target," "aim" and "goal," among others. In connection with the "safe-harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, ACNielsen and NetRatings are hereby identifying important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements made regarding the venture. Any such statement is qualified by reference to the following cautionary statement.
Risks and uncertainties that may affect the operations, performance, development and results of the venture's business include: (i) the likely incurrence of significant losses by the venture while its business is being developed and the difficulty of forecasting future revenues and costs;(ii) the risk that a competing company's Internet audience measurement service will become the accepted standard for Internet audience measurement; (iii) the ability to successfully develop, promote and maintain the Nielsen//NetRatings brand; (iv) the effects on demand for the venture's products and services if the use of the Internet does not continue to grow; (v) the effect that governmental regulation of the Internet could have on the growth of the Internet; (vi) the ability to successfully respond to rapid technological change, including the uncertainties surrounding the emergence of new Internet access devices; (vii) the risks associated with international development of the Internet ratings service, including effecting necessary changes to the existing software to accommodate language and other differences in the jurisdictions in which the venture will operate and the effect of laws and regulatory requirements in such jurisdictions; (viii) the risks involved in collecting personal information from panelists, including the effect of privacy laws in the jurisdictions in which the venture will operate; (ix) the impact of foreign exchange rate fluctuations since so much of the venture's earnings will be generated abroad; (x) the risk of technical difficulties or service interruptions and the lack of a backup facility in the event of a systems failure at NetRatings' computer operations center in San Jose, California; and (xi) the uncertainties of litigation, including the IRI lawsuit against ACNielsen; as well as other risks and uncertainties that may be detailed from time to time in the Securities and Exchange Commission filings of the venture partners.
Developments in any of the areas referred to above could cause the results of the venture to differ from projected results. ACNielsen and NetRatings caution that the foregoing list of important factors is not exclusive and they do not undertake to update any forward-looking statement that may be made from time to time regarding the venture.

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