US Internet users hit 147 m

The US online population has hit an all-time high, with 73% of adults, or 147 million, now using the Internet, an Associated Press report said.

The report said the figures represented an increase from 66%, or 133 million adults, in January 2005, according to the Pew Internet and American Life Project.

But only 42% of all adults, or 84 million, had high-speed connections at home, which were important for viewing video and treating the Internet as an always-on reference. Looking only at home Internet users, 62% had broadband, the report said.

In a report, Pew noted that Internet use still varied with age and income.

The report said 88% of adults under 30 went online, compared with 32% for those aged 65 and older.

Only 53% of adults in households earning less than $30,000 a year used the Internet, compared with 91% in households with annual incomes exceeding $75,000, the report further said.