Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Smartphones are #1 Internet Device

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has been tracking the variety of devices used by Americans to go online since 2011. Here are the trends...

Desktop computers were the most popular internet device in 2011, with 45 percent of Americans aged 3 or older going online via a desktop. But desktops have fallen out of favor, and in 2019 only 28 percent used a desktop to go online. 

Laptop computer use has barely changed over the past decade, with 43 percent of the public using a laptop to go online in 2011 and 47 percent doing so in 2019. 

Smartphone use has soared. Only 27 percent of Americans used a smartphone to go online in 2011. In 2019, 68 percent used a smartphone to access the internet, far surpassing the use of any other type of device. 

Tablet computer use has grown since 2011, when only 6 percent of the public used a tablet to go online. But growth leveled off in 2015. In 2019, 30 percent used a tablet computer to go online.

Wearable internet devices such as smartwatches were first tracked by the NTIA in 2015, when just 1 percent of Americans used one. In 2019, the figure had grown to 12 percent.

Smart TVs, connected to the internet, were owned by 14 percent of the public in 2011. By 2019, ownership had grown to 41 percent.

Most Americans use more than one type of device to go online, the NTIA reports. In 2019, nearly two-thirds of the public (64 percent) reported using at least two types of devices to access the internet, and 45 percent used three or more. 

Source: National Telecommunications and Information Administration, NTIA Data Reveal Shifts in Technology Use, Persistent Digital Divide

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