Internet Use

In the last few years, Americans’ use of the Internet and computers has grown substantially.

  • The rate of growth of Internet use in the United States is currently two million new Internet users per month.
  • More than half of the nation is now online. In September 2001, 143 million Americans (about 54 percent of the population) were using the Internet — an increase of 26 million in 13 months. In September 2001, 174 million people (or 66 percent of the population) in the United States used computers.

Americans are going online to conduct an expanding range of activities.

  • Forty-five percent of the population now uses e-mail, up from 35 percent in 2000. Approximately one-third of Americans use the Internet to search for product and service information (36 percent, up from 26 percent in 2000).
  • Among Internet users, 39 percent of individuals are making online purchases and 35 percent of individuals are searching for health information.

Table 1-1. Internet Use by Percent of State Population

State  Total Population, Age 3+ (Thousands)  Percent Who Are Internet Users 
(90 Percent Confidence Interval)*
Illinois   11,486 49.5 — 53.0
Indiana  5,733  52.6 — 58.4
Michigan  9,553  54.6 — 58.2
Ohio  10,877  53.2 — 56.8
Wisconsin  5,070  54.1 — 59.9

Taken from
A NATION ONLINE: How Americans Are Expanding Their Use of the Internet - February 2002
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE - Economics and Statistics Administration - National Telecommunications and Information Administration

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