Report: 19 percent of US adults have made Internet phone calls

While the rise of wireless phone services in the last decade is well documented, not as much attention has been made to the rise of the Internet for phone calls by users. Now a newly released study from the research group PEW Internet claims that 24 percent of all adult Internet users in the US have used the Internet to make phone calls. That amount is equal to 19 percent of all US adults. In addition, the report claims that on an average day, 5 percent of Internet users are making calls via the Internet. The results come from a new survey of 2,277 US adults that was conducted over the past few weeks.

This is a huge jump from a previous survey conducted in 2007 where the study found that just 8 percent of all Internet users in the US were making phone calls on the Internet and only 2 percent of Internet users were making phone calls on any given  day. While PEW Internet admits that the wording of its survey might have changed the results somewhat, it states, " ... there is little doubt that the popularity of online phone calling has picked up over time for several reasons." Those reasons include cheaper or free phone calls via the Internet, more people using the Internet for video conferencing and more smartphones being made with Internet phone capabilities.

This rise in Internet based phone call use has to please Microsoft who recently paid $8.5 billion to acquire the popular Internet phone service company Skype.

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If you are referring to Comcast Digital Voice, it in no way/shape/form can be considered an *Internet telephony product* any more than Verizon's competing FiOS telephone service. CDV calls run over the same private HFC backbone as Comcast's cable signal to the headends/NOCs, where it enters the PSTN. However, there are plenty of VOIP/Internet-telephony products out there (in fact, *all* the current major IM clients include a VoIP portion piggybacking along for the ride, and that still leaves plenty of room for the *VoIP and nothing but" clients such as Skype) - it's entirely possible, if you've used the voice-chat feature in IM software, you've made the equivalent of a VoIP call and not known it. (That was, in fact, the biggest feature of the *original* Windows VoIP client software - VocalTec Internet Phone.) I made my *first* VoIP call using that client, back when Windows 95 was the Windows du jour, and look at how VoIP has exploded since, just on Windows alone.

what's considered an "internet phone call"? comcast digital voice is an "internet phone" in the sense its a normal phone system but it converts it to VoIP back to their head end then turns do normal POTS... so is this considered internet phone? it does use the "internet" as a transit method... but then so does every phone company now to do point to point transmissions over long distance now

Does this take into account peoples jobs. People's jobs may dictate the use of internet phone calls, i.e. telesales executives as it's cheaper than buying a handset for every person. I wonder if the figure would be the same if they had been asked "Have you ever made an internet phone call aside from your place of work?". That being said, the internet calls are being made whether it be from home or work so perhaps its something that needs to be pushed even more to phase out the household telephone completely.

Is this only pertaining to Skype and similar services or does this also include Time Warner Digial Phone and similar Voip services?