Almost 30% Of Americans Are Always Online

July 26, 2019 by Douglas A. McIntyre

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Many Americans are glued to their phones, or in front of their PCs or tablets. The number who say they are always online is extraordinarily high according to information from a major research firm.

Pew Research has done a study about how often Americans use the internet. Eighty-one percent go online at least daily. However, 28% say they are online nearly every minute of the day. In a research report entitled “About three-in-ten U.S. adults say they are ‘almost constantly’ online”, Pew commented “As smartphones and other mobile devices have become more widespread, 28% of American adults now report that they go online “almost constantly,” up from 21% in 2015” The survey was conducted  from Jan. 8 to Feb. 7, 2019.’

At the other end of the spectrum, 10% of Americans are never online. In one sense, the figure is not surprising. Many urban Americans can’t afford broadband. Many rural Americans do not have access to it at all.  The Pew report shows, “Adults who live in urban and suburban areas are also more likely to say they go online almost constantly than those who live in rural areas.”. This is may also vary from city to city. These are the 25 richest cities in America.

There are significant differences among Americans who are always online demographically. While 48% of people ages 18 to 29 say they are always online, the number drops to 7% among people aged 65+. Among people who make less than $35,000, the percentage of people always online is 23%. Among people who make $75,000 plus, that figure is 34%. There is also a relationship to education. Those with less than a high school degree who say they are “almost constantly online” is 23%. The number rises to 36% among people who have a college degree or higher.

Pew does not offer any opinions about what the research means. However, the unspoken conclusion is that the rich and well educated are more likely to use the internet than the poorly educated or those who are poor financially. That likely varies from place to place. These are America’s poorest towns.