Pew: 47% of US Adults Have Home Broadband

July 9, 2007

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Nearly half (47%) of all adult Americans now have a high-speed internet connection at home, compared with 42% in early 2006 and 30% in early 2005, according to a February 2007 survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.


Some key findings of the Pew “Home Broadband Adoption 2007” report:

  • Some 71% of US adults now use the internet at least occasionally from some location; of these, 94% have an internet connection at home.


  • Among adults with a home internet connection, 70% go online using a high-speed connection, compared with 23% who use dialup.
  • The growth in the number of home high-speed connections from 2006 to 2007 was just 12%, trailing the 40% increase from 2005 to 2006, when many people in the middle-income and older age groups acquired home broadband connections.


  • Those groups continued to show increases in home broadband adoption into early 2007, but at lower rates than in the past:
    • Among adults who live in households whose annual incomes fall between $30,000 and $50,000, home broadband adoption was 46% in early 2007, up 3 percentage points since 2006.
    • Among senior citizens (age 65+), home broadband adoption was 15% in early 2007, up 2 percentage points since 2006.
    • Among people between the ages of 50 and 64, 40% have home high-speed connections, up 2 percentage points since 2006.

“The moderate growth in home high-speed adoption from 2006 to 2007 is partly a reflection of strong prior-year growth; the low-hanging fruit was picked in 2005,” said John B. Horrigan, Associate Director of Research at the Pew Internet & American Life project and author of the report.

“Luring remaining hard-to-get adults to home broadband is likely to involve showing them the relevance of online content.”

Several groups exhibited strong growth in home broadband adoption from 2006 to 2007, according to the Pew report:

  • African Americans: 40% of now have broadband at home, up by 8 percentage points from 2006.
  • Rural Americans: 31% of those living in rural areas have broadband at home, up 6 percentage points from 2006.
  • Low-income households (adults who report living in households with annual household incomes under $30,000): 30% report having broadband at home, up by 9 percentage points the prior year and matching the end-of-2005 national average.


“Broadband adoption in rural America faces two challenges – network availability and demographics,” said Aaron Smith, research specialist at the Pew Internet Project and coauthor of the report.

“Rural Americans tend to be older, less avid online users, and thus less interested in fast home connections. And some parts rural America also simply don’t have the infrastructure for providing broadband at home.”

About the study: The Pew Internet Project’s report on broadband adoption is based on the Project’s February-March survey of 2,200 adults, 996 of whom were home broadband users.

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