Monday, December 1, 2008

Ease of Use Still a Problem

Technology ease of use remains a problem, according to a new survey conducted by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project. Nearly half (48 percent) of adults who use the Internet or have a cell phone say they usually need someone else to set up a new device up for them or show them how to use it. And many users of various devices and services also encounter breakdowns from time to time.

Some 44 percent of those with home Internet access say their connection failed to work properly for them at some time in the previous 12 months. About 39 percent of those with desktop or laptop computers have had their machines not work properly at some time in the previous 12 months as well, says John Horrigan, Pew Center associate director.

About 29 percent of cell phone users and 26 percent of smart phone usres say their device failed to work properly at some time in the previous year.

Some 15 percent of those experiencing problems with PCs, mobiles, Internet access or smart phones said they were unable to fix the problem. About 38 percent of users with failed technology contacted user support for help while 28 percent say they were able to fix the problems themselves. Some 15 percent fixed the problem with help from friends or family. About two percent found help online.

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