March 7, 2006, 12:00 AM

U.S. households` Internet growth will be flat in 2006

Overall Internet penetration among U.S. households will grow only slightly this year to 64%, according to a new study from Parks Associates, a market research and consulting firm.

 

Overall Internet penetration among U.S. households will grow slightly this year from 63% to 64%, according to a new study from Parks Associates, a market research and consulting firm.

29% of households without Internet access don’t own a computer, according to Parks’ National Technology Scan (2005), a survey of 1,000 U.S. homes. Another 5% own computers but wouldn’t subscribe to an Internet service at any cost and 2% own computers and intend to subscribe to an Internet service.

Among reasons given by those who said they won’t subscribe to an Internet service, 31% said they had access to the Internet at work, 18% said they weren’t interested in anything on the Internet, 8% said they didn’t know how to use the Internet, 4% said it’s too expensive to buy a computer, and 39% gave other reasons.

“We are clearly facing a problem of demand, not supply,” said John Barrett, director of research. “Computers and Internet service have never been cheaper, yet many households still show little enthusiasm for technology.”

Parks also found that 42% of all U.S. households have broadband access; 4% have narrow band access but plan to upgrade to broadband; and 18% have narrowband access but don’t intend to upgrade.

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