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networkworld.comPaul McNamara

May 4, 2017 8:17 AM PT

In addition to my editing duties, I have written Buzzblog since January, 2006. Feel free to e-mail me at [email protected].

For the first time in history, U.S. households with landlines – such as mine -- are now in the minority, according to survey numbers from a federal government report released this morning.

From that report issued by the National Center for Health Statistics:

The second 6 months of 2016 was the first time that a majority of American homes had only wireless telephones. Preliminary results from the July–December 2016 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) indicate that 50.8% of American homes did not have a landline telephone but did have at least one wireless telephone (also known as cellular telephones, cell phones, or mobile phones) —an increase of 2.5 percentage points since the second 6 months of 2015.

Young adults (25-34) and those who rent are most likely to live wireless-only, as 70 percent of that demographic lives with a landline.
National Center for Health Statistics (Why is the National Center for Health Statistics interested in phone usage preferences? Well, it seems that those who eschew landlines – taking the “risk” of wireless-only – also exhibit tendencies toward other risky behaviors, such as smoking and excessive drinking.)
The wireless-only trend is neither surprising nor new, of course, though it’s still worth noting that close to half of our fellow citizens cling to their old-fashioned phones. The reasons are varied and numerous, with the Associated Press having a good rundown of them here.

My guess is that many of those rationales for maintaining a landline will endure for many years to come, meaning it will be some time before we are a totally wireless society.
 

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I'm not surprised, many people I know have eliminated it because of the excess cost. Older and/or more cautious people are definitely the ones who still have one. Also some might not want to lose their phone number.
 

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Yeah, now everyone has to borrow an outlet to charge their phones all the time. Really annoying. And kids don't even know their phone numbers anymore without having to look them up. Over-reliance on technology to think for you will lead to the doom of many people one day.
 

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Landlines are expensive and not really necessary anymore.

Why pay $30-$50/month for a phone you can only use at home that's only a phone and nothing else, when you can pay $50/month for unlimited talk, text, and data on a phone that also can be used for countless apps/games?

Only older people still use home phones, mostly because they don't know how to use a cell phone or are afraid of them.
 

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what's written up there doesn't seem to cover VOIP service. That's what I use, a MagicJack. it's great and only 35 bucks a year. the caller id isn't as good as comcast's but for 35 bucks a year i am not complaining. you have to have good internet service though.
 
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