New research examines the spending of Australian households on telecommunications.

The Bureau of Communications, Arts and Regional Research (BCARR) has just released its findings on telecommunications spending by Australian households in a new research paper.

BCARR found that telecommunications affordability has improved with Australian households now spending a lower share of their disposable income on telecommunications services—down from 4.1% in 2008 to 3% in 2021.

Household spending on telco services behaves like their spending on other necessities, such as food—the share of income spent on telco services declines as household income grows.

The study also found that, when controlling for income and other factors, there was a lower share of income spent on telecommunications in households where members: speak English poorly, reside alone, are aged 65 or older, are not employed, or are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders.

A copy of the paper is available on our website.