The digital divides in Hong Kong A small stories analysis of older women's use of smartphones and mobile technologies

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingChapter in an edited book (as author)Academic researchpeer-review


Hong Kong is one of the most technologically advanced regions in the world. Mobile data are cheap, information is readily available online, and many everyday services are now offered online. The life expectancy of Hong Kong residents has also improved in recent years and the region has a modernized and expansive public health system. However, demographic profiles of local Hong Kong residents reveal significant differences in education and literacy levels that impact the ability of some groups to make use of this highly developed system. Migration patterns and the relatively late introduction of statutory education requirements mean that low-income groups of women aged over 65 in Hong Kong often have lower education and literacy levels than their age-matched male peers. This chapter describes a novel study of “small stories” told by a group of older Hong Kong Cantonese women about their use of mobile and digital technologies. Data was collected through a combination of semi-structured interviews and group discussions with women aged between 63 and 91. The findings of this research highlight patterns of mobile phone ownership and usage as well as evidence of an ongoing and potentially growing divide between those people who can work with and take advantage of the development of digital technologies and those who can’t or don’t.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWomen’s Agency and Mobile Communication Under the Radar
EditorsXin Pei, Pranav Malhotra, Rich Ling
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9781032285085
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2024


  • Women
  • Cantonese
  • Mobile devices


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