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The internet brings significant value to French consumers. This "consumer surplus" – the perceived value that consumers themselves believe they receive, over and above what they pay for devices, applications, services, and access – amounts to $4,453 a person in France (Boston Consulting Group 2012).

French consumers place a considerable amount of value on the internet. This "consumer surplus" – the perceived value that consumers themselves believe they receive, over and above what they pay for devices, applications, services, and access – amounts to $4,453 a person in France (Boston Consulting Group 2012).

While time spent on online leisure activities in France is growing, it is difficult to measure the corresponding benefit derived by consumers. Consumption of free online entertainment generates consumer surplus above and beyond consumer spend on marketed products and services. In monetary terms, this can be measured as how much the income of a consumer without access to the internet would need to increase in order to obtain the same utility gained when online (The Institute for Prospective Technological Studies 2014).

A study by the Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS) reveals that almost 75% of time spent online in France is on leisure activities. One measure used by the IPTS suggests that the consumer surplus of internet usage for leisure is around 2.2% of full income in France, which is equivalent to EUR 2,082 (IPTS 2014).