18% Of U.S. Households Have No Internet Access

By: Mike Sachoff - May 14, 2008

Around one-fifth of all U.S. households are without an Internet connection and have never used email, according to research firm Parks Associates.

An annual phone survey of households by Parks found 20 million households have no Internet access, making up approximately 18 percent of all U.S. households.

"Nearly one out of three household heads has never used a computer to create a document," said John Barrett, director, research, Parks Associates. "These data underscore the significant digital divide between the connected majority and the unconnected minority that rarely, if ever, uses a computer."

Age and education play a role in this divide. One-half of those who have never used email are over 65, and 56 percent had no education beyond high school.

Just seven percent of the 20 million without Internet access plan to get an Internet connection within the next year. The study did find a decline in the number of households that were disconnected compared to previous years. At the end of 2006, 29 percent of households (31 million homes) did not have Internet access, citing low perceived value of the Internet.

"Internet connections have slowly increased in U.S. households, but getting the disconnected minority online will continue to be difficult," Barrett said.

"Age and economics are important factors, but the heart of the challenge is deeper. Many people just don’t see a reason to use computers and do not associate technology with the needs and demands of their daily lives."


Mike Sachoff

About the Author

Mike SachoffMike is a staff writer for WebProNews.

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  • http://www.missionbeachsouth.com Guest

    …And they like it that way!  Hey, after a long day of surfing for credits, weeding through niche offers, promoting , promoting, and did I say, promoting my site?  I wish I had never bought a computer myself and were instead sitting out on the front porch swing watching the grass grow!

    It’s the simple life and that’s ok.

  • Jess Wonderin

    Look at the numbers – those that "chose the simple life" are older and less educted/affluent folks that have created their lives in a world when "computer use" is an alien concept.

    Computer use by those creating the "new America" is huge, and those without aacess are economiclly disadvataged in today’s job and education world. The key to making America great is education and computer use is a major part of that effort. The days of dropping out of high school to get a job in the factory that will allow mom to stay home, buy a house and send kids to colege ended when "Leave It To Beaver" when into re-runs . . .

    Those pining for "The Simple Life" will have to be content to sit on the porch swing and watch the bank auction off the family farm . . .

    • Jess Wonderin

      ( . . . damn, shoulda run Spellcheck . . . another use of computers in education . . .)

    • http://www.arperture.com MGM

      What about all the undocumented people living here.

  • SoBe Gene
    The elderly have always been that part of society that is usually uninterested in a new lifestyle.  They are set in their ways, no matter what generation or century.
    Being uneducated does make living expenses expensive. 
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  • Guest

    Does the author have stats broken out by states?