Technology Adoption by Lower Income Populations

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  • 1. APHSA-ISM Annual Conference October 8, 2013 Aaron Smith, Senior Researcher Pew Research Center Technology adoption by lower income populations
  • 2. About Pew Internet • Part of the Pew Research Center, a non-partisan “fact tank” in Washington, DC • Studies how people use digital technologies • Does not promote specific technologies or make policy recommendations • Research is primarily based on nationally representative telephone surveys
  • 3. What do we mean by “lower income”? • Based on reported annual household income • Categories collected: <10k, 10-20k, 20-30k, 30-40k, 40-50k, 50-75k, 75-100k, 100-150k, and 150k+ • Around 10-20% of respondents typically don’t report (or don’t know) income • Limited ability to subdivide the lower- income population. But it tends to skew towards non-white; youth and seniors; low education; urban/rural
  • 4. Before we get started • Apologies for making you start your morning with charts… • But you don’t have to write anything down! • Because you can find these slides at pewinternet.org/presentations
  • 5. 1) Internet Use and Home Broadband Adoption
  • 6. National averages • 85% of American adults are internet users • 70% of American adults have some sort of high-speed home internet connection (DSL, cable, FIOS, etc) Which means that… • 15% of Americans do not go online from any device/location (Group 1) • 15% of Americans go online, but do not have broadband at home (Group 2)
  • 7. Internet use & broadband by income 42% 54% 64% 63% 77% 84% 85% 90% 90% 70% 70% 85% 84% 92% 94% 96% 97% 96% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more Broadband at home Use the internet 1 2
  • 8. Age has a huge impact on which group people fall into 1% 5% 8% 11% 24% 48% Non users: Half 65+ yrs old 18-24 25-34 35-44 45-54 55-64 65+ 16% 17% 15% 22% 14% 14% Online, no broadband: Half <45 yrs old 18-24 25-34 35-44 45-54 55-64 65+
  • 9. In plain English… • Around 1/3 of people making <$20k per year are not online at all. Non-users are heavily dominated by older adults. • Around 1/3 go online, but don’t have broadband at home. • So how is that group accessing online content?
  • 10. Many of them turn to public institutions like libraries • 32% of lower-income (<$30k per year) Americans have accessed the internet for free from somewhere other than home, school or work in last 12 months • 81% of lower-income Americans say it is “very important” for the library to provide free access to the internet & computers • 35% of lower-income library users have used the internet or a computer at a library in the last 12 months
  • 11. 2) But mobile devices are also playing a big role
  • 12. Cell ownership > internet use 70% 70% 85% 84% 92% 94% 96% 97% 96% 83% 87% 87% 89% 92% 96% 98% 98% 97% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more Use the internet Own a cell phone +17+13
  • 13. Smartphone or non-smart phone? Depends on your income… 17% 13% 14% 11% 9% 4% 2% 2% 3% 49% 44% 37% 38% 37% 35% 25% 16% 16% 34% 43% 49% 51% 54% 61% 73% 82% 81% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% LT $10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k+ No cell phone Cell, not a smartphone Smartphone
  • 14. …but especially your age 77% 47% 22% 8% 81% 68% 40% 21% 90% 87% 72% 43% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% 18-29 30-49 50-64 65+ Less than $30,000 $30,000-$74,999 $75,000 or more Smartphone ownership by age/income grouping
  • 15. Smartphone ownership over time 21% 20% 26% 37% 44% 38% 53% 57% 73% 35% 43% 49% 51% 54% 61% 73% 82% 81% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more May 2011 May 2013 +14 +8+25+20+23+10+14+23+23
  • 16. Impact of smartphones on “broadband” adoption 42% 54% 64% 63% 77% 84% 85% 90% 90% 56% 66% 78% 74% 85% 91% 94% 95% 96% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more Broadband at home Broadband OR Smartphone +14 +12 +14
  • 17. Biggest impact is among young and working-age lower income adults 74% 60% 47% 24% 92% 79% 55% 25% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 18-29 30-49 50-64 65+ Broadband at home Broadband OR Smartphone +18 +19 +8 Broadband/smartphone adoption among HH income of <$30k per year
  • 18. Almost everyone texts, apps track with smartphone ownership 80% 75% 80% 80% 81% 88% 85% 90% 90% 33% 43% 46% 46% 49% 50% 59% 73% 68% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more Use text messaging Download apps % of cell owners in each income group who…
  • 19. Texting and apps by lower-income adults of different age groups 98% 92% 68% 19% 78% 41% 14% 4% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 18-29 30-49 50-64 65+ Use text messaging Download apps Texting/apps use among cell owners with HH income of <$30k per year
  • 20. Internet use on cell phones 50% 51% 63% 60% 59% 63% 72% 83% 84% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more 45% of cell internet users in this income group go online mostly with their cell phone 39% 27%30% % of cell owners in each income group who use the internet/email on their cell phone
  • 21. Tablets – growing at the low end, but still largely an elite device 5% 5% 12% 16% 14% 22% 28% 34% 45% 17% 15% 26% 25% 33% 38% 50% 57% 65% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% <$10k $10,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $74,999 $75,000 - $99,999 $100,000 - $149,999 $150k or more May 2012 May 2013 Tablet ownership by income category
  • 22. Summary • Huge differences between young and old lower-income adults • Cell phones are common for all income ranges, but smartphones are mainly a young/working age phenomenon • Many lower-income adults (esp. younger ones) are using mobile devices as their primary gateway to online life
  • 23. Resources 2013 Broadband update: http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2013/Broadband.aspx 2013 Smartphone update: http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2013/Smartphone- Ownership-2013.aspx Mobile topics page (running list of latest and greatest): http://pewinternet.org/topics/Mobile.aspx
  • 24. Aaron Smith Senior Researcher Pew Research Center’s Internet Project asmith@pewresearch.org @pewinternet @pewresearch