In its early surveys about technology use in 2000, when about half of American adults used the internet, the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project found that about a tenth of those internet users placed phone calls using the internet. In its last reading in late 2012, when over 80% of Americans were internet users, the Project found that 30% of them had placed online phone calls.
As with many online activities, the young and the upscale were more likely than other internet users to have made online phone calls. The Project survey conducted between November 14-December 9, 2012 found that 42% of those with college or graduate degrees have placed online phone calls; 37% of those living in households earning $75,000 or more had done so; and 40% of those ages 18-29 had done so.
This is one of many ways that the digital age is changing what it means to make a phone call and the ways in which people make calls. You can read more about the Internet Project’s research on how people use their mobile phones here.