A Household Internet Adoption Model Based on Integration of Technology Acceptance Model, Theory of Planned Behavior, and Uses and Gratifications Theory: An Empirical Study on Iranian Households

A Household Internet Adoption Model Based on Integration of Technology Acceptance Model, Theory of Planned Behavior, and Uses and Gratifications Theory: An Empirical Study on Iranian Households

Shima Mohebbi (University of Tehran, Iran), Vahid Khatibi (University of Tehran, Iran) and Abbas Keramati (University of Tehran, Iran)
Copyright: © 2012 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/jea.2012010104
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Abstract

Existing theories in the technology acceptance and Internet adoption fields have examined the adoption among users, which can be classified into two categories: technological and behavioral perspectives. In this paper, the authors propose an integrated household Internet adoption model combining both perspectives to provide a holistic view on the subject. For this purpose, the three primal models of technology acceptance and usage behavior, the technology acceptance model (TAM), theory of planned behavior (TPB), and uses and gratifications theory (U&G), are selected to construct the integrated model. In this way, based on the dimensions of the studied theories, specific constructs are defined to integrate these dimensions according to their similarities and appropriateness. The relationship between the proposed model’s constructs are then hypothesized based on the literature findings, and examined in a case study of household Internet adoption among Iranian households. Also, structural equation modeling (SEM) is used to illustrate the relationships’ coefficients between proposed model constructs, and derived implications for the Internet adoption among Iranian households are discussed based on the research findings.
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1. Introduction

The fundamental drivers for the development of an information society are information and communication technologies (ICTs), so as penetration of these technologies among households makes deep effects on development of information society (Shan et al., 2008). Therefore, the information society is initiated with the consolidation of acceptance, access, and continuous usage of the ICTs by households and individuals. As the Internet penetrates in societies, formation of information society has facilitated, so as vast Internet technological possibilities make the progress of the information society fast. On the other hand, ICT emergence in societies has shaped a new type of exclusion called “digital divide” (Schulz & Olaya, 2005) in which inequality of the studied society with the desired information society is measured (Tien & Fu, 2008). It must be noted that countries face the threat of being left further behind if they do not address the growing digital divides both between and within countries (Bridges.org, 2001). Taking into account this point, the progress evaluation of the information society’s goals achievement to narrow the digital divide is crucial. Without understanding of the society elements adaptation qualification, it is in doubt whether the shift towards an information society is actually taking place or working in positive ways. Furthermore, policy makers have no clear understanding of future policy steps without reference to the current status of ICT establishment and application procedures. In this context, measures, which provide concrete and factual statements about the current state of ICT development, are necessary to encourage debate about how policies must be formulated and how visions must be implemented (United Nations, 2005). The use of measures to monitor these objectives is critically important, particularly in the developing states, where the digital divide is a prominent political issue (United Nations, 2005).

From another perspective, Internet has changed the form of people’s connections to friends, family, and their communities, on the social system, and also on the working of groups and teams (Anderson, 2008), so as the Internet can now be seen as the worldwide device for communications, which provides exchange of the text, graphics, audio and video information and access to the online services without boundaries (Flanagin & Metzger, 2001). In addition to usage in scientific, social, government, and businesses development affairs, the Internet as an information and entertainment technology has affected education, banking, broadcast services, and health care delivery too that extends the Internet applications scope to households. Thus, the core indicators on accept and usage of Internet by households and individuals should be used in parallel with e-business activities assessment as a starting point of countries that are planning to move toward the information society. Although many countries are attempting to build an information infrastructure, and accelerate the adoption of Internet access technology, the results are not always satisfactory (Oh et al., 2003). According to the Internet World Stats of Miniwatts Marketing Group report (2011), the percentage of Internet penetration in Iranian communities is 43.2% in 2010 which indicates the government should still make efforts to enhance the Internet penetration rate.

Although Internet usage brings potential benefits to humans, there is a lag in Internet adoption and usage, so as a variety of issues influences the Internet usage which include lack of access to the Internet and related skills, unaffordable costs, concerns about security and privacy, and worries about the complexity of finding information, navigating, and using programs (Morrell et al., 2000). Also, the successful performance of technology-based tasks depends on cognitive abilities such as memory and speed of information processing (Charness et al., 2001; Czaja et al., 2006; Sharit et al., 2004). From a psychological perspective, some empirical investigations demonstrated that some people may be less confident in Internet use, and such negative psychological factors affect their decisions regarding Internet adoption (Al-Gahtani & King, 1999; Chou, 2003; Joiner et al., 2005; Kelley et al., 1999; Prenso, 1998; Wada, 2003).

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