Principal Forrester analyst Charlene Li based the findings on a survey of 68,000 households in North America. The figure does not include households that use RSS without knowing it, for instance through the my.yahoo.com website.
RSS use is highest among consumers between the ages of 12 and 21, five per cent of whom claim to use the technology.
RSS is used to notify users when an update is posted to a website through the use of special feeds, and is generating much attention among bloggers.
Users currently have to download special RSS readers or use online services such as Newsgator.
The technology is used mostly for news, blogs and podcasts. The new Microsoft application will allow users to subscribe to, for instance, calendar feeds that enter sports games directly into a user's Outlook schedule, or to use a screen saver that displays images from fotoblogs.
Despite the limited number of users of the technology, 57 per cent of marketers are interested in using RSS as a promotional channel, according to Forrester.
The researchers cited the reduced effectiveness of email marketing and a general fatigue with advertising as reasons for the shift.
Forrester argued that because customers actively subscribe to an RSS feed its adoption provides valuable feedback on users' desired types of content.
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