January 25, 2022

Data: NTIA Survey Finds Some Americans Still Avoid Home Internet Use

From NTIA (National Telecommunications and Information Administration):

NTIA’s most recent Internet Use Survey depicts a rapidly evolving nation eager to take advantage of technological innovation. Mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, and wearables are increasingly dominating the computing landscape, as more Americans than ever use the Internet.

Yet a portion of the population still does not use the Internet at home, consistent with findings in previous NTIA and U.S. Census Bureau surveys on Internet use. According to the most recent data collected in 2017, 22 percent of U.S. households—approximately 28 million households in total—did not use the Internet from home, with most citing either lack of interest or concern about price


We found some similarities between the two largest groups of offline households. Each included relatively high numbers of low-income households making less than $25,000 per year. They were also somewhat more likely to be in a rural location, and less likely to have post-secondary education, than those households with home Internet service.

But data on the two groups also revealed some distinct differences. Households that cited lack of interest were less likely to have school-age children at home. Moreover, online households and those citing expense as a concern each had a mean age of 49, while those not online due to lack of need or interest averaged nearly 63 years of age. And households not online at home due to expense were twice as likely as their counterparts citing lack of interest to report using the Internet from other locations, as well as previous home Internet use.

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About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.