Smartphones bridge US digital divide

Apr 13, 2012
Smartphones are bridging a US digital divide as minorities tap into the Internet using mobile devices, according to a Pew study released on Friday. Smartphones are bridging a US digital divide as minorities tap into the Internet using mobile devices, according to a Pew study released on Friday.

Smartphones are bridging a US digital divide as minorities tap into the Internet using mobile devices, according to a Pew study released on Friday.

"Groups that have traditionally been on the other side of the digital divide in basic Internet access are using wireless connections to go online," the study concluded.

"African American and English-speaking are as likely as whites to own any sort of mobile phone, and are more likely to use their phones for a wider range of activities."

While race and gender were fading as obstacles to Internet access, matters changed when it came to age, education, and income, according to the study.

"Ultimately, neither race nor gender are themselves part of the story of digital differences in its current form," the study said.

"Instead, age (being 65 or older), a lack of a , and having a low (less than $20,000 per year) are the strongest negative predictors for Internet use."

The findings, based on a survey conducted in the middle of last year, also found notably less by those who opted to respond in Spanish instead of English.

"Yet even groups that have persistently had the lowest access rates have still seen significant increases over the past decade," Pew researchers said.

One in five US adults do not use the Internet, with the most common reason being that they simply weren't interested, according to the study.

Explore further: Turkey still hopes Twitter will open local office

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Survey: Internet use grows fast among Latinos

Dec 22, 2009

(AP) -- Latino adults are increasing their use of the Internet faster than other ethnic groups, according to a new survey from the Pew Hispanic Center and the Pew Internet and American Life Project.

Digital divide widens, research finds

Jan 20, 2012

(PhysOrg.com) -- The "digital divide" -- the gap in Internet access and usage due to socioeconomic factors -- is increasing, according to research published in the Communications of the Association for Information Systems.

Twitter usage rising among US adults: Pew study

Jun 01, 2011

More American adults are using Twitter and the micro-blogging service is particularly popular among African-Americans and Latinos, according to a survey released on Wednesday.

Recommended for you

Net neutrality balancing act

6 hours ago

Researchers in Italy, writing in the International Journal of Technology, Policy and Management have demonstrated that net neutrality benefits content creator and consumers without compromising provider innovation nor pr ...

Twitter rules out Turkey office amid tax row

Apr 16, 2014

Social networking company Twitter on Wednesday rejected demands from the Turkish government to open an office there, following accusations of tax evasion and a two-week ban on the service.

How does false information spread online?

Apr 16, 2014

Last summer the World Economic Forum (WEF) invited its 1,500 council members to identify top trends facing the world, including what should be done about them. The WEF consists of 80 councils covering a wide range of issues including social media. Members come ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Tiny power plants hold promise for nuclear energy

Small underground nuclear power plants that could be cheaper to build than their behemoth counterparts may herald the future for an energy industry under intense scrutiny since the Fukushima disaster, the ...

Clean air: Fewer sources for self-cleaning

Up to now, HONO, also known as nitrous acid, was considered one of the most important sources of hydroxyl radicals (OH), which are regarded as the detergent of the atmosphere, allowing the air to clean itself. ...

Turning off depression in the brain

Scientists have traced vulnerability to depression-like behaviors in mice to out-of-balance electrical activity inside neurons of the brain's reward circuit and experimentally reversed it – but there's ...