Blog Post

New Pew Report: African Americans Most Active Users of Mobile Web

--This is a re-post of Robin Caldwell's blog post of July 27, 2009 on balckweb20.com--

 

Pew Internet & American Life Project has released a new report on users of wireless Internet.  Based on the findings of an April 2009 daily tracking survey, the results of the report were gleaned from data from telephone interviews conducted by Princeton Survey Research International between March 26 to April 19, 2009, among a sample of 2,253 adults, 18 and older.

The survey revealed:

  • 56% of adult Americans have accessed the internet by wireless means, such as using a laptop, mobile device, game console, or MP3 player.
  • The most prevalent way people get online using a wireless network is with a laptop computer; 39% of adults have done this.
  • One-third of Americans (32%) have used a cell phone or Smartphone to access the internet for emailing, instant-messaging, or information-seeking. This level of mobile internet is up by one-third since December 2007, when 24% of Americans had ever used the internet on a mobile device. On the typical day, nearly one-fifth (19%) of Americans use the internet on a mobile device, up substantially from the 11% level recorded in December 2007. Thats a growth of 73% in the 16 month interval between surveys.

And important to BlackWeb20.com readers:

African Americans are the most active users of the mobile internet and their use of it is also growing the fastest. This means the digital divide between African Americans and white Americans diminishes when mobile use is taken into account.

  • 48% of Africans Americans have at one time used their mobile device to access the internet for information, emailing, or instant-messaging, half again the national average of 32%.
  • 29% of African Americans use the internet on their handheld on an average day, also about half again the national average of 19%.
  • Compared with 2007, when 12% of African Americans used the internet on their mobile on the average day, use of the mobile internet is up by 141%.

The high level of activity among African Americans on mobile devices helps offset lower levels of access tools that have been traditional onramps to the internet, namely desktop computers, laptops, and home broadband connections.

  • By a 59% to 45% margin, white Americans are more likely to go online using a computer on a typical day than African Americans.
  • When mobile devices are included in the mix, the gap is cut in half; 61% of whites go online on the average day when mobile access is included while 54% of African Americans do.
  • Looking across a range of digital activities some done online typically using a computer and others being non-voice data activities on a mobile device African American and white Americans, on average, do the same number of activities.

Access the rest of the report HERE.

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BlackWeb20.com covers website and application launches; culturally relevant Internet industry news; and mainstream Internet industry news from an African-American perspective.  They also analyze emerging web trends and how they apply to web properties that target African-Americans or African-American culture.

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