1 in 5 Adults Have Tried Video Calling/Chatting

October 14, 2010

Almost a fifth of American adults (19%) have tried video calling either online or via their cell phones, according to new data from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

23% of Web Users, 17% of Cell Phone Owners Have Tried Video
That 19% overall figure comes from Pew adding up the number of adults who said they either had made a video or teleconferencing call online (17% of adults have done that) or made video calls on their cell phones (6% of adults have done that). In many cases people have placed video calls on both the internet and their cell phone. Those who answered yes to both questions were only counted once in the overall tally of video callers.

These figures translate into 23% of internet users and 7% of cell phone owners who have participated in video calls, chats, or teleconferences.

Younger, Hispanic, Male Web Users More Likely to Try Video
Breaking down the 23% of internet users who have tried video chatting demographically, Pew data indicates that younger, Hispanic and male users have higher rates of trying video. Twenty-eight percent of Hispanic web users have tried video chatting, as have 26% of males and 29% of those aged 18-29 at time of survey.


In addition, web users who have attended some college (24%) or obtained a college degree or beyond (30%) are more likely to have tried video chatting. Other demographic categories with higher rates of trying video chatting include those with an annual household income of $75,000 or more (34%), Spanish speakers (28%), urban residents (27%) and broadband users (26%).

Less Disparity in Video Calling Figures
There was less demographic disparity, as well as less overall usage, in video calling among cell phone owners than video chatting among web users. Men (8%), blacks (10%), 18-29-year-olds (9%), college graduates (11%), annual household income of $75,000 or more (10%), English speakers (7%), urban dwellers (8%) and broadband users (8%) were the leading demographics for trying video calling.


North American Mobile Video Adoption Low
North Americans are less than half as likely as the global average to watch online video via mobile device, according to a recent study from The Nielsen Company. Data from “How We Watch” indicates that as a region, North America only scores 45 on the Index of Mobile Video Usage (Past 30 Days).

With a score of 100 representing the global average, this means North Americans are 55% less likely to watch mobile video than international online consumers as a whole. As an individual nation, the US scored 32nd out of 55 countries tracked with an index score of 55.

About the Data: These figures were gathered in a survey of 3,001 American adults (ages 18 and older) between August 9 and September 13, 2010.

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