According to a new survey, 88 percent of registered voters own a cell phone and many of them use their device to get information about the 2012 presidential candidates and interact with the campaigns themselves.
These findings are based on a nationally representative phone survey of 1,005 adults (ages 18+) conducted September 20 to 23 by the Pew Research Center.
The survey said that 27% of registered voters who own a cell phone have used their phone in this election campaign to keep up with news related to the election itself or on political issues in general.
Three quarters of these registered voters use their phone to send or receive text messages, and within this group:
- 19% have sent text messages related to the campaign to friends, family members, or others
- 5% have signed up to receive text messages directly from a candidate or other group involved in the campaign
- 5% say that they have received unwanted election-related text messages that they did not sign up to receive
Smartphone owners are using their mobile devices as a tool for political participation on social networking sites and as a way to fact check campaign statements in real time. Roughly half (48%) of registered voters who own a cell phone say that they have a smartphone, and within this group:
- 45% have used their smartphone to read other people’s comments on a social networking site about a candidate or the campaign in general
- 35% have used their smartphone during this election campaign to look up whether something they just heard about a candidate or the campaign in general was true or not
- 18% have used their smartphone to post their own comments on a social networking site about a candidate or the campaign in general