Latest Findings on Cell Phones and Polling

  • May 22, 2008
  • By Scott Keeter

Last week the National Center for Health Statistics released new government estimates of the number of Americans who can now be reached only by a cell phone -- an estimated 14.5% of all adults, and significantly larger percentages in certain population subgroups such as young people and Hispanics. The growing number of wireless-only households poses a serious challenge to survey research, much of which relies upon landline surveys to reach respondents.

The Pew Research Center has been tracking and studying the cell phone challenge for several years, and reported its latest research on the issue at the annual meeting of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR), held in New Orleans May 15-18.

Researchers from Pew presented four papers dealing with cell phone issues. One reported on the so-called "dual users" -- people who have both landline and cell phone service and theoretically can be reached either way. Another paper focused on the 2007 National Survey of Latinos, which included landline and cell phone interviews. A third described the religious affiliation of the cell-only population. And a fourth reported on findings about internet use among the cell phone population. Here are some of the key findings, along with links to the full papers.

Read more on the Latest Findings on Cell Phones and Polling on the Pew Research Center Web site.