13% of online adults use Twitter, and half of Twitter users access the service on a cell phone
As of May 2011, 13% of online adults use the status update service Twitter. That represents a significant increase from the 8% of online adults who identified themselves as Twitter users the first time we asked our “stand-alone” question about Twitter adoption in November 2010.
For the first time in our May 2011 survey, we also included a follow-up question asking cell phone-owning Twitter users if they access the service on their phones and found that half (54%) access the service in this way. Due to sample size limitations, we are unable to provide detailed statistics on mobile Twitter usage by different demographic groups.
Twitter adoption is particularly high among non-whites
Non-white internet users continue to have higher rates of Twitter use than their white counterparts; indeed, the Twitter adoption gap between African-Americans and whites has increased over the past six months. In November 2010, there was an eight percentage point difference in Twitter use between African-American and white internet users (13% for blacks vs. 5% for whites). By May 2011, that gap was 16 percentage points—25% of online African Americans now use Twitter, compared with 9% of such whites. African-American and Latino internet users are each significantly more likely than whites to be Twitter adopters. Even more notable: One in ten African-American internet users now visit Twitter on a typical day—that is double the rate for Latinos and nearly four times the rate for whites.
Twitter usage by those ages 25-44 has grown significantly since late 2010
Although young adults continue to have relatively high rates of Twitter usage, the number of 30-49 year olds who use the service has doubled since late 2010—from 7% of such users in November to 14% in May 2011. This growth trend is especially pronounced among 25-34 year olds—Twitter use for this cohort roughly doubled between November 2010 and May 2011, from 9% to 19%—although growth in Twitter use among internet users ages 35-44 was notable as well (from 8% in late 2010 to 14% in spring 2011). By contrast, Twitter adoption over the same time period was stable among the youngest adults (those ages 18-24) who were the most likely to use the service in our first survey.