Wireless surfing takes off in the US

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Wireless surfing takes off in the US

Over a third of people access the internet wirelessly using laptops, PDAs or
mobiles.

Around a third of internet users in the US have logged on to the web wirelessly using a laptop, PDA or mobile phone, new research has reported.

The survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project also found that the number of internet users with wireless networks at home nearly doubled from 10 per cent in January 2005 to 19 per cent in December 2006. 

John Horrigan, associate research director at Pew Internet, said: "We know that 'always on' broadband connections really deepen people's relationship to the internet, and adding 'on the go' to the mix takes this a step further."

Wirelessly-enabled laptops are leading the charge. Four in 10 internet users have a laptop and 80 per cent of those are able to connect wirelessly to the internet.

A quarter of Internet users have a mobile phone with this capability, and more than half have used it to connect to the internet or check email.

Only one in eight Internet users owns a PDA with wireless functionality, but a hefty 82 per cent of these have used their handheld device to connect to the internet over the airwaves.

"The convenience of wireless access gives people the chance to fire off a quick email to someone while waiting in a doctor's office or to check the news headlines on the way to work," said Horrigan.

The Pew Internet survey sampled 2,373 US adults between 30 November and 30 December 2006. Of these, 1,623 were classified as internet users and 798 as wireless users.
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