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Hardly Anyone Using Campaign Apps, Survey Says

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, October 9 2012

To reach registered voters on their mobile phones this year, campaigns stand a better chance by recruiting supporters to talk to their peers on social networks, according to new survey data. Voters are far more likely to get their news by talking with one of their friends or reading someone else's comments online than by checking with an app made by the campaign, the survey found.

While 88 percent of registered voters own some sort of cell phone, according to a survey released today by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, just five percent have signed up to receive text messages from a campaign or related group, and only eight percent have used an app from a candidate.

Meanwhile, 45 percent of smartphone-wielding voters have used their phone to read comments about the campaign on social networking sites.

Of voters with a phone, 48 percent say they have a smartphone, according to the survey.

Another nugget for fact-checkers: Thirty-five percent of registered voters with a smartphone have used it to check whether something they just heard about a candidate was true, according to the survey.

Pew polled 1,005 adults in late September. The full survey is available here.