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Most Americans age 50 and older are texting to keep in touch, using both a computer and smartphone, and connecting via social media, according to recent research from AARP.

The report was based on data from a survey conducted in November 2017 among a nationally representative sample of 1,520 adults in the United States age 50 and older.

Most respondents (91%) say they use technology to connect with friends and family.

Some 86% use text messaging to connect, and 72% use social media to connect (up 112% since 2011).


Some 92% of Americans age 50+ use a laptop or desktop. Adults age 70+ are more likely to use a traditional desktop computer than Americans age 50-69.

Some 70% of respondents use a smartphone, 43% use a tablet, 23% use an e-reader, and 7% use a home assistant.

Some 89% of Americans age 50+ use a smartphone to send or receive emails or texts, 77% to look at traffic and directions, 42% to play games, and 28% to manage medical care.

Although smartphone ownership is prevalent, most Americans age 50+ continue to use computers to make purchases, to comparison-shop, and to perform banking/financial transactions.

About the research: The report was based on data from a survey conducted in November 2017 among a nationally representative sample of 1,520 adults in the United States age 50 and older.

Ayaz Nanji is an independent digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Content, a marketing agency specializing in content creation for brands and businesses. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

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LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji



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