“The digital divide in terms of basic Internet access is a real thing in the U.S., and a new Pew Research report shows that smartphones are emerging as an important battleground in closing the gap,” Katie Benner writes in an editorial for Bloomberg. “Phone ownership (and an affordable cellular plan) gives some of the least well-off Americans their primary access to online job searches and applications, online program enrollments, contact with friends and access to all of the information that
“Pew says the groups most likely to depend on smartphones for connectivity include younger adults, low-income families, people without college degrees and black and Latino citizens,” Benner writes. “Battles over Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity — connection quality and speed, corporate monopolies and pricing — aren’t just the business concerns of companies like Google and Verizon. They impact a lot more than our ability to watch House of Cards on our iPhones. It’s good to remember that cell phone connection issues are battles that directly impact some of the country’s most vulnerable people and that small shifts in pricing and policy can increase or cut off access to an important tool.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: The good news is that, in the U.S., smartphone saturation has prompted a battle among carriers to offer more data at better prices, benefitting every demographic.