Rise Of Mobile Platforms In US Causing Decline In Home Broadband Connections

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The ongoing rise of mobile platforms across the United States is causing a rapid decline in the use of home broadband connections, new figures have indicated.

New findings from the US Census Bureau’s Computer and Internet Use Supplement to the Current Population Survey (CPS), have revealed the changing internet habits of Americans, as we enter an increasingly mobile era.

The figures, which include data collected for the National Telecommunications & Information Administration Department (NTIA) in July 2015 from around 53,000 households, found that 75% of US households using the internet at home in 2015 used wired technologies for high-speed internet service, a notable decrease from 82% in July 2013.

Rise of mobile platforms

And for this same two-year period, NTIA also found that the number of online households that relied entirely on mobile service at home had doubled, rising from 10% to 20%.

In terms of platforms, the department also found an incline in smartphone use from 45% of Americans in 2013 to 53% in 2015, overtaking laptops to become the most used computing device.

rise of mobile platforms in US
Between 2013 and 2015, tablet use also increased substantially, with the US recording a 9% growth in the number of Americans using smart televisions and TV-connected devices last year, to 27%.

The number of devices used by each individual was also investigated, with 57% of Americans using at least two types of internet-connected devices in 2015, and a further 37% saying they used at least three different types of devices.

Following the research, NTIA linked the growth in the rise in use of mobile internet, the continued decrease in desktop computer use and the subsequent increase in the number of mobile-only households, to the overall drop in wired broadband connections.

Effects of household income

However, NTIA also found that the rate at which this change is occurring significantly depends on a number of demographic factors, including income.

The research confirmed that low income households using the internet at home were notably more likely to depend on mobile data, finding that 29% of households with family incomes below $25,000 exclusively used mobile internet services at home – compared to 15% of households with incomes of $100,000 or more.

Speaking about these findings, Giulia McHenry, Chief Economist, Office of Policy Analysis and Development said: “The plethora of connected devices now available opens up exciting possibilities, though it also raises the specter of a new type of digital divide.

“This new divide is characterized not solely by whether an individual can use the Internet, but by the full range of capabilities available to the user, including whether that person can access sufficient service and a device that is suited to a particular task.”

You can find out more about the study here.

Danielle White

Danielle is a Junior Reporter at Global Dating Insights. Originally from Reading, she has studied Multimedia Journalism at Bournemouth University and has a passion for writing and reporting. She enjoys travelling and likes to spend her free time socialising with friends and attending music events.

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