NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Houses with Computers Now Outnumber Those Without

September 7, 2001

More than half of U.S. households had at least one computer last year and more than 40 percent were connected to the Internet, according to Census Bureau figures.

  • Some 65 percent of children ages 3 to 17 had access to a computer at home last year -- up from about 55 percent in 1998.
  • Of children in that age group, 30 percent logged onto the Internet -- compared with only 19 percent in 1998.
  • Some 54 million households -- or 51 percent -- had one or more computers in 2000.
  • The oldest adults in the nation had the lowest rates of computer ownership and Internet use -- with only about 28 percent of those 65 and over reporting that they owned a computer and 13 percent saying they used the Internet.

Eric C. Newberger, the bureau statistician who wrote the report, calls attention to the enormity of the shift and that "it happened so fast." He predicted that in the future "we will look back on this as a watershed year, when computers went from a special thing in a home to a common appliance."

Source: New York Times reporters, "Report Counts Computers in Majority of U.S. Homes," New York Times, September 7, 2001.

 

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