From February 15 through April 6, Pew found in their research 73 percent of adults in the US use the Internet for a variety of tasks. Healthcare information has been one area that benefited Internet users as the quality and depth of that information developed.
In the report, 20 percent of respondents said the Internet has greatly improved the way they get information about healthcare. Respondents also reported they found great improvement in doing their jobs (24 percent), shopping (32 percent), and pursuing interests and hobbies (33 percent) thanks to the Internet.
Men and women found the Internet equally useful for doing their jobs and for shopping; the report said about a third of male and female respondents said the Internet has improved that «a lot.» Women found the Internet most useful for finding healthcare information than men did, while more men than women said the Internet improved their personal pursuits.
Those users have increasingly moved to broadband access, which in some markets competes very well with dialup access on price. 42 percent of Americans, about 84 million, have broadband at home, up from 29 percent in January 2005.
Income and education still form a demarcation line when it comes to having Internet access at home or using it. As incomes rise above $30,000, the likelihood of having an Internet connection rises to 80 percent, and increases greatly over $50,000 and over $75,000.
College graduates go online at a 91 percent clip, the report said. Only 40 percent of adults with less than a high school education do so.