70% of Americans say: We can’t do our jobs without an internet connection

Joe Supan

Sep 15, 2020 — 2 min read

We asked 950 currently employed Americans whether or not their jobs required a home internet connection. Here's what we found.

  • Most employed Americans (over 71.5%) say they could not perform their jobs without a home internet connection.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic contributed to this reality with 7.7% of respondents saying their jobs only recently required home internet.
  • Only 28% of respondents said they could do their current job without a home internet connection.
Could you do your job without internet at home

Is home internet essentially a requirement for most jobs these days?

Some of us are old enough to remember a time when work was mostly done at work and home life was mostly done at home. But the lines between home and work are blurring and that effect is being accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic of 2020.

Many have argued that since the internet is such an essential part of our economy now that it should be a top government priority to ensure access for everyone.

A poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users, conducted for the BBC World Service between Nov. 30, 2009 and Feb. 7, 2010 found that almost four in five internet users and non-users around the world felt that access to the internet was a fundamental right. 50% strongly agreed, 29% somewhat agreed.


We polled 950 Americans who are currently employed. There are certainly some folks who work in healthcare, grocery stores, auto shops, etc., where you wouldn’t think a strong home internet connection was a requirement. But if you ask those workers, they’ll tell you they have a work email they check often, work nights from home on clerical items and likely feel like their job now requires access to the web these days.

This only adds to the argument though, that the internet should, at least to some extent, be available to all Americans wherever it is technologically possible.

Joe Supan

Written by:

Joe Supan

Principal Writer, Broadband Content

Joe is a senior writer for CNET covering home technology and broadband. Prior to joining CNET, Joe led MYMOVE’s moving coverage and reported on broadband policy, the digital divide, and privacy issues for the br… Read more

Robin Layton

Edited by:

Robin Layton

Editor, Broadband Content

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