Study: 35% of U.S. Adults Own Smartphones

WASHINGTON — More than one third of Americans, or about 35 percent, own smartphones and most of them access the Internet or email on the handheld device.

The survey, conducted by the Pew Internet Project, found that 83 percent of U.S. adults have a cell phone and that 42 percent of them own a smartphone.

The definition of a smartphone owner included anyone who said their phone is a smartphone (33 percent) and anyone who said their phone operates on a smartphone platform such as an iPhone, Blackberry, Android Windows or Palm operating systems (39 percent).

The survey showed that 87 percent of smartphone owners access the Internet or email and 25 percent said they mostly go online using their phone rather than a computer.  

Several demographic groups have high levels of smartphone adoption, including the financially well-off and well-educated  and those under the age of 45.

While many of the respondents have other sources of online access at home, roughly one third of these “cell mostly” Internet users lack a high-speed home broadband connection.