Digital Agenda for Europe
A Europe 2020 Initiative

Austria

Article
Spider chart showing Austria's position in comparision to the EU evaerage in the DESI Index
Find here the most recent analysis and data by country. A selection of key documents and graphs are shown about topics such as broadband, internet activity and skills, egovernment, ICT in schools, research and innovation, as well as other main indicators.
Share this

Charts and indicators

Clicking the links below you can visualize various indicators for this country

performance charts | table of indicators  | indicators' evolution over time

Download

 Download the country profile as a pdf (EN) (DE)

 

 

In DESI 2015, Austria has an overall score[1] of 0.48 and ranks 13th out of the 28 EU Member States. Austria ranks in the top 10 of EU countries for broadband availability and affordability: 99% of households are covered by a basic connection and a basic subscription costs just over 1% of the individual average income. Digital technologies are relatively well exploited by businesses, individuals and public institutions: 59% of internet users bank online and 75% of the administrative steps related to major life events can be completed online. But, there is scope for improvement, especially in certain important areas, such as online commerce by SMEs (only 12% of SMEs sell online) and the digitalisation of healthcare services (only 8.1% of GPs use ePrescriptions).

Austria falls into the cluster of medium‑performance[2] countries, where it performs below average.

 
DESIAustriaClusterEU
rankscorescorescore
DESI 2015130.480.510.47
DESI 2014130.460.470.44

1. Connectivity

1 ConnectivityAustriaClusterEU
rankscorescorescore
DESI 2015120.560.60.55
DESI 2014120.520.540.51

 

With an average overall Connectivity score of 0.56, Austria ranks 12th among EU countries, a slight improvement in 2014 as compared to 2013. Austria performs below average as compared to other countries in the medium-performing cluster. Broadband is both ubiquitous and affordable.

 

 AustriaEU
DESI 2015DESI 2014DESI 2015
valuerankvaluerankvalue
1a1 Fixed BB Coverage
% households
99%
(2013)
 1099%
(2013)
1097%
(2013)
1a2 Fixed BB Take-up
% households
64%
(2014)
 1759%
(2013)
2270%
(2014)
1b1 Mobile BB Take-up
Subscribers per 100 people
65
(2014)
 1363
(2013)
1167
(2014)
1b2 Spectrum
% of the target for spectrum to be harmonised at EU level
76%
(2014)
 1276%
(2013)
1170%
(2014)
1c1 NGA Coverage
% households, out of all households
70%
(2013)
 1770%
(2013)
1762%
(2013)
1c2 Subscriptions to Fast BB
% of subscriptions >= 30Mbps, out of fixed BB subscriptions
18%
(2014)
 2112%
(2013)
2122%
(2014)
1d1 Fixed BB Price
% individual gross income spent for the cheapest standalone Fixed Broadband subscription (lower values are better)
1.1%
(2014)
 71.1%
(2013)
81.3%
(2014)

 

Broadband is more affordable in Austria than in most other EU countries (on average, Austrians only need to spend 1.1% of their income to get a broadband connection as opposed to the 1.3% EU average). Fixed broadband is available to 99% of households as compared to the 97% EU average.

Despite lower prices and almost ubiquitous coverage, the uptake of fixed broadband connections is below EU average, although it did increase in 2014 (from 59% to 64%). Austria is slightly below the EU average also for the uptake of mobile broadband. This notwithstanding, 80% of households in Austria holds at least one type of broadband connection (fixed, mobile or both) in 2014, above EU average (76%).[3]

Austria has more catching up to do when it comes to high-speed broadband. Only 18% of Internet subscribers have a high-speed broadband connection despite it being available to 70% of households. Whilst this has increased significantly, it is still below the EU average of 22%. Whilst Austria is one of the best-performing countries for broadband overall, it ranks only 17th for high-speed broadband coverage. Coverage itself could thus be improved, although the mountainous geography of the country could understandably make roll-out more difficult.

2. Human Capital

2 Human CapitalAustriaClusterEU
rankscorescorescore
DESI 2015120.570.570.54
DESI 2014110.570.540.52

 

With an above-average Human Capital score of 0.57, Austria ranks 12th among EU countries.

 

 AustriaEU
DESI 2015DESI 2014DESI 2015
valuerankvaluerankvalue
2a1 Internet Users
% individuals (aged 16-74)
77%
(2014)
 1177%
(2013)
1175%
(2014)
2a2 Basic Digital Skills
% individuals (aged 16-74)
64%
(2014)
 1065%
(2012)
659%
(2014)
2b1 ICT Specialists
% employed individuals
2.9%
(2013)
 122.9%
(2012)
122.8%
(2013)
2b2 STEM Graduates
Graduates in STEM per 1000 individuals (aged 20 to 29)
16
(2012)
 1416
(2012)
1417
(2012)

 

The digital skills of the wider population are above the EU average. 77% of Austrians use the Internet at least once per week. Around 64% of Austrians have at least basic digital skills, above EU average.

Austria is also slightly above average when it comes to the share of ICT specialists in the workforce.

However, the number of graduates holding a degree in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), is below the EU average. This is important as the number of STEM students today has a direct impact on the ability of Austria to exploit the opportunities offered by digital technologies in the future. STEM graduates, once they enter the workforce, are important drivers of the use of digital technology in research and in the economy, including of the most cutting-edge digital technologies.

3. Use of Internet

3 Use of InternetAustriaClusterEU
rankscorescorescore
DESI 2015240.360.440.41
DESI 2014250.320.420.39

 

When it comes to some of the more common uses of the Internet by private individuals, Austria scores 0.36 (up from 0.32 last year) and ranks only 24th among EU countries. This is surprising considering that Austrians have digital skills above the European average. Internet is also widely available and affordable in Austria. Austrians are therefore in a good position to exploit the Internet for a variety of uses. 

 

 AustriaEU
DESI 2015DESI 2014DESI 2015
valuerankvaluerankvalue
3a1 News
% individuals who used Internet in the last 3 months (aged 16-74)
67%
(2014)
 2151%
(2013)
2567%
(2014)
3a2 Music, Videos and Games
% individuals who used Internet in the last 3 months (aged 16-74)
42%
(2014)
 2441%
(2012)
2549%
(2014)
3a3 Video on Demand
% households that have a TV
20%
(2013)
 2020%
(2013)
1939%
(2013)
3a4 IPTV
% households that have a TV
7.1%
(2013)
 177.1%
(2013)
1713%
(2013)
3b1 Video Calls
% individuals who used Internet in the last 3 months (aged 16-74)
29%
(2014)
 2727%
(2013)
2637%
(2014)
3b2 Social Networks
% individuals who used Internet in the last 3 months (aged 16-74)
55%
(2014)
 2546%
(2013)
2758%
(2014)
3c1 Banking
% individuals who used Internet in the last 3 months (aged 16-74)
59%
(2014)
 1460%
(2013)
1257%
(2014)
3c2 Shopping
% individuals who used Internet in the last year (aged 16-74)
65%
(2014)
 966%
(2013)
963%
(2014)

 

Austrians score around European averages when it comes to the more practical uses of the Internet, e.g. internet banking (59%) and online shopping (65%). Austrians are also among the leading shoppers cross border. This indicates a general trust in online services. In addition, more and more Austrians seem to have acquired a habit for reading news online and for connecting through social networks, with both uses showing a significant year-on-year increase.

However, Austrians seem to make less use of the Internet for classical entertainment purposes (music, videos, games, TV) and make much less video calls. This may be due to lifestyle preferences or also to technological constraints, like insufficient bandwidth.

4. Integration of Digital Technology

4 Integration of Digital TechnologyAustriaClusterEU
rankscorescorescore
DESI 2015130.370.370.33
DESI 2014130.330.340.3

 

Businesses in Austria increasingly make use of digital technologies. With an overall score of 0.37, Austria is well above average, albeit not when compared to other countries in its medium-performing cluster. Whilst integration of digital technologies by businesses seems to be in line with or above the EU average, there is scope for improvement in specific areas, especially for small and medium sized enterprises.

 

 AustriaEU
DESI 2015DESI 2014DESI 2015
valuerankvaluerankvalue
4a1 Electronic Information Sharing
% enterprises (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
45%
(2014)
 232%
(2013)
1231%
(2014)
4a2 RFID
% enterprises (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
5.6%
(2014)
 72%
(2011)
123.8%
(2014)
4a3 Social Media
% enterprises (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
15%
(2014)
 1718%
(2013)
714%
(2014)
4a4 eInvoices
% enterprises (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
11%
(2014)
 119.4%
(2013)
1811%
(2014)
4a5 Cloud
% enterprises (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
6.1%
(2014)
 22n.a.-11%
(2014)
4b1 SMEs Selling Online
% SMEs (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
12%
(2014)
 1612%
(2013)
1515%
(2014)
4b2 eCommerce Turnover
% turnover of SMEs (no financial sector, 10-249 employees)
7.1%
(2014)
 185.9%
(2013)
218.8%
(2014)
4b3 Selling Online Cross-border
% SMEs (no financial sector, 10+ employees)
9.7%
(2013)
 89.7%
(2013)
86.5%
(2013)

 

The integration of digital technologies can improve the performance of an enterprise in many ways. It can improve productivity and can help companies to reach more customers and to serve them better. Businesses in Austria are well ahead of the EU average in some specific uses of digital technology, namely electronic information sharing within a company. At the same time, they seem to be relatively reluctant to embrace cloud technology, which could further improve the sharing of information (a 6% uptake as compared to an EU average of 11%). 

SMEs in Austria seem to struggle somewhat to exploit the full advantage of online commerce, which would give them the opportunity to reach more consumers directly, taking into account Austrian consumers' propensity to engage in eCommerce (see previous section). The number of SMEs selling online is lower than the EU average and even these SMEs realise a below-average proportion of their turnover from online sales. However one of the most digitised sectors in Austria is tourism, where Austrian SMEs are very active in selling to consumers in other countries and raising the average of cross-border trade relative to other European countries (9.7% of SMEs engaged in online cross-border sales vs the EU average of 6.5%). In conclusion, Austrian SMEs do not have a strong propensity to sell online, but those who do, are ready to do go cross border too.

5. Digital Public Services

5 Digital Public ServicesAustriaClusterEU
rankscorescorescore
DESI 2015100.50.490.47
DESI 2014110.470.450.45

 

Austria scores well for the use of digital technologies in public services as compared to the EU average, ranking 10 overall. When compared to the countries in its own cluster, Austria`s performance is average. The only area where Austria seems to be seriously lagging behind is healthcare.

 

 AustriaEU
DESI 2015DESI 2014DESI 2015
valuerankvaluerankvalue
5a1 eGovernment Users
% individuals returning filled forms, out of Internet users in the last year (aged 16-74)
36%
(2014)
 1534%
(2013)
1133%
(2014)
5a2 Pre-filled Forms
Score (0 to 100)
52
(2014)
 1352
(2013)
1345
(2014)
5a3 Online Service Completion
Score (0 to 100)
90
(2014)
 686
(2013)
675
(2014)
5a4 Open Data
Score (0 to 700)
500
(2014)
 5n.a.-380
(2014)
5b1 Medical Data Exchange
% General Practitioners
29%
(2013)
 1329%
(2013)
1336%
(2013)
5b2 ePrescription
% General Practitioners
8.1%
(2013)
 168.1%
(2013)
1627%
(2013)

 

The digitalisation of public services has a huge potential as it saves cost, time and effort for users and providers alike. Austria seems to have recognised this potential and is above average for general indicators for the use of online services. It even shows a year-on-year improvement, e.g. Online Service Completion.

The sectorial indicators for the digitalisation of healthcare show a different picture. Austrian GPs are way behind the EU average in using ePrescriptions and also behind in sharing medical data. This cannot be explained by any technological constraints (broadband is ubiquitous and affordable) or the lack of skills (Austria scores above the EU average when it comes to the digital skills of individuals and there does not seem to be a shortage of ICT professionals to create or maintain systems when compared to the EU average). There may be some sector-specific reasons here for the low uptake of digital technologies that could be worth investigating.

 

[1] DESI scores range from 0 to 1, the higher the score the better the country performance.

[2] In the DESI 2015, the medium-performance cluster of countries comprises Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Estonia, Spain, France, Ireland, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, and the UK

Country:

Last updated on 24/04/2015