Pew Study: Smartphones Key Way for Americans to Go Online

Americans are in love with smartphones and rely on the mobile electronic devices as their key way to get online. However, many say the cost of the devices are very steep, showed a new survey on Wednesday.

The survey, performed by the Pew Research Center has found that close to 64% of adults in the U.S. had a smartphone as of 2014, which was nearly double the percentage from 2011.

Approximately 15% of the people surveyed said they owned a smartphone and had limited access to Internet from other devices or sources. Another 10% said they did not have broadband Internet in their home.

The figures mean that 1 out of approximately 14 Americans is dependent on a smartphone, with no home-based high-speed Internet and little if any access elsewhere, said Pew.

A sizeable number of the users that are smartphone dependent are younger adults: with 15% in the age group 18-29. Those with lower educational levels and lower incomes were more apt to depend upon their mobile handsets.

In comparison to smartphone owners that are less reliant on mobile devices, these users classified as smartphone dependent are much less likely to have another form of computing device; less apt to own a bank account; less apt to have health insurance coverage; and more likely to live in a rental home or with a family members or friend instead of own their home.

However, due to these people usually earning lower incomes, many had problems with paying their monthly smartphone bills said Pew.

Close to 23% of owners of smartphones said, they had to suspend or cancel their Internet service for what was deemed a financial reason, and 15% say they often reach their maximum data amount allowed on the plan they have.

Although 93% call their smartphone useful, under half or just 46% claimed they could live without it and 54% said they did not always needed it.

While users of smartphones access the Web on their mobile handsets for a number of things, smartphone dependent and low-income users are more likely to use the apparatus for something related to work or to find another job.

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