A December 2005 survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that only 3% of internet users had some type of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service at home, while 13% of internet users had made a phone call online. About half of those users have the service in addition to regular landline telephone service and half have it instead of landline service at home. However, public awareness of VoIP is growing rapidly — an important factor in the spread of an emerging technology such as VoIP. In the December 2005 survey, 45% of internet users said they had heard of VoIP, which translates into roughly 61 million Americans. This is a dramatic 86%-increase in VoIP awareness in the 22 months since the last time Pew Internet asked this question, in February 2004. At that time, only 27% of internet users, or 33 million Americans, had heard of VoIP. Read More

Russell Heimlich  is a former web developer at Pew Research Center.