4 Variables That Make You Less Likely to Use the Internet

It’s 2019, and the internet is officially here to stay. Everyone and their mother is online these days, whether it’s for casual web browsing, online gaming, video streaming, social media, work, navigation, trip planning, or any number of mundane daily activities. We’re more connected than ever before, and for most of us, it’s hard to imagine a time before we had high-speed internet service in our pocket at all times.

But according to a recent Pew Research Center analysis, a full 10% of Americans don’t use the internet. Who are these Americans, and why are they still offline?

There are a number of variables connected to internet non-adoption, and today, our connectivity experts at Clarus Broadband will break down four factors that make a person less likely to be online. Our mission is to build a more connected future by overcoming demographic challenges to internet access and implementing fiber optics throughout Texas. Read on to learn more, and be sure to contact us today to learn how you can bring affordable internet plans to your community!

1. Advanced age

Pew Research Center’s internet use analysis found that senior citizens are much less likely to go online than younger adults. While internet usage amongst American millennials is nearly ubiquitous, a full third of adults over the age of 65 report never getting online.

In 2018, internet usage was self-reported by:

  • 98% of Americans aged 18 to 29
  • 97% of Americans aged 30 to 49
  • 87% of Americans aged 50 to 64
  • 66% of Americans aged 65 and up

Although internet usage has steadily risen for all age ranges since 2000, senior citizens are still behind. Many senior citizens cite a general disinterest, or a disbelief that the internet is relevant to their lives. Some think that it is too difficult to use, or that they are too old to learn.

Whatever the reason, advanced age is a reliable predictor for internet non-adoption.

2. Low education level

Across the board, lower education levels correspond with lower internet usage. While almost every American with a college degree uses the internet, only two thirds of adults without a high school diploma get online.

In 2018, internet usage was self-reported by:

  • 97% of college graduates
  • 93% of adults with some college education
  • 84% of high school graduates with no college education
  • 65% of adults with only some high school education

Education levels also tend to be closely linked with the next variable on our list:

3. Low income level

Predictably, households with a lower annual income are less likely to be online. This makes sense, since 19% of non-internet users cited cost as a barrier to internet service.

In 2018, internet usage was self-reported by:

  • 98% of Americans earning $75,000+ per year
  • 97% of Americans earning $50,000 to $74,999 per year
  • 93% of Americans earning $30,000 to $49,999 per year
  • 81% of Americans earning less than $30,000 per year

As affordable internet options become more ubiquitous, and more governments classify the internet as a right instead of a luxury, cost is becoming less of a barrier to internet usage.

4. Living in a rural area

While internet usage is high in both urban and suburban areas, rural communities consistently fall behind in online access. If you’ve read our blog on why rural high-speed internet is a struggle, you understand why. Material limitations, low competition levels, and expensive up-front costs are all barriers to widespread rural internet options.

In 2018, internet usage was self-reported by:

  • 92% of urban Americans
  • 90% of suburban Americans
  • 78% of rural Americans

Fortunately, there is a growing number of rural internet service options to connect our rural communities to the wider world.

Clarus Broadband Is Building a More Connected Future

As the internet becomes more integral to our daily lives, the so-called “digital gap” is shrinking. People of all ages, education levels, income ranges, and communities are getting online at higher rates than ever before. In a world with increasing connectivity demands, Clarus Broadband is dedicated to building a future of high-speed internet service for all.

We’re on a mission to connect rural communities across Texas with state-of-the-art fiber optic technology. By providing Texas homes and businesses with lightning-fast internet service, we aim to stimulate economic and social growth, but we need pre-committed customers to begin! Contact us today to learn more about our internet plans for Texas, and learn how you can get online and get involved now.