Strong growth among senior citizens and rural residents has pushed the number of Americans with high-speed internet connections to 63%, up from 55% in 2008. But African Americans experienced their second consecutive year of below-average broadband adoption growth.
Contrary to the image of Generation Y as the "Net Generation," internet users in their twenties do not dominate every aspect of online life. Gen X is the most likely to shop, bank and look for health information online. And larger percentages of older generations are doing many more activities online.
Investment in broadband has become part of the broader discussion about President Obama's economic stimulus package; Pew Internet Project surveys suggest that expanding access may take longer than some advocates anticipate.