Americans say Internet or cell phone service interruption amid coronavirus would be a problem

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As Americans turn to technology to get them through coronavirus-induced lockdowns, 93 percent say that any interruption to Internet or cell phone service would be a problem in their daily life.

A new Pew Research Center survey conducted earlier this month found that 49 percent said an outage would be a very big problem for them and 28 percent said it would be a moderately big problem.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, apps and services like Zoom, FaceTime, Instagram live and Google Duo have seen dramatic increases in usage across the country. People have held virtual dance parties, dates, fitness sessions and countless business meetings on these platforms.

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Even so, a majority of the U.S. public does not see these digital interactions as being equivalent to in-person interactions.

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Some 64 percent of Americans think the Internet and phones will help but are not a replacement for face-to-face encounters, according to the Pew survey, which was conducted online from March 16-24.

A full one-quarter of those surveyed told Pew that they have used video calling or an online conferencing service, such as Zoom, to attend a work-related meeting due to the coronavirus outbreak.

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