Hispanics Go High Tech
Recent studies show that Hispanic Internet users are avid downloaders of digital content, according to consumer and media research firm Scarborough Research. Scarborough's analysis finds that Hispanic Internet Users are 21% more likely to download digital content than the average adult online. "Download" refers to the download of any of the following content during the past month: podcasts, video games, music, other audio clips, television programs or other video. Forty-two percent of Hispanic Internet users have downloaded some form of digital content during the past 30 days, compared to 35% of the total Internet population. Music is the top download category for both Hispanics and the total Internet population. Almost one-third (32%) of Hispanic Internet users and almost one-quarter (24%) of all Internet users have downloaded music during the past month.
"Increased high-speed Internet access among Hispanics is opening the door for online businesses to establish brand loyalty with this consumer group," said Gary Meo, senior vice president of digital media services, Scarborough Research. "Offering Hispanics new and creative ways to interact with a brand online -- particularly via downloaded digital content -- could go a long way in successfully marketing to the Hispanic adult."
Given the growth of broadband and content downloading in this consumer group, it is no surprise that Hispanic Internet usage overall has reached a critical mass. The majority (54%) of Hispanics are now online. In fact, Internet access among Hispanic adults has increased 13% since 2004. By contrast, Internet access by all consumers nationally grew 8% during this time period. Hispanics have been taking advantage of the national expansion of broadband, and their rate of adoption has mirrored that of the total U.S. population. Currently, 68% of Hispanic Internet Users have a broadband connection in their household. Broadband connection is defined as having a cable modem or DSL Internet connection in the household. Broadband penetration rates have grown from 13% in 2002 -- an increase of more than five-fold. This is roughly the same pace of broadband adoption of adult Internet users overall. Seventy-one percent of U.S. Internet users currently have broadband at home, growing from just 15% in 2002.
As a part of their complimentary study, Scarborough examined 13 local markets with higher-than-average concentrations of Hispanic adults and found distinctive Internet usage patterns and local variations. For example, Miami is the top Hispanic market for broadband penetration. Seventy-six percent of Hispanic Internet users in Miami have broadband at home. By contrast, El Paso, Dallas, Fresno, Calif., and Harlingen, Tex., are the markets in which Hispanic residents are least likely to have a broadband connection. Phoenix is the leading local market for Hispanics who download digital content. Sixty percent of Phoenix's Hispanic Internet users downloaded digital content during the past month. El Paso, Miami and Dallas are the markets where Hispanic Internet users are least likely to download digital content.