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(The New York Times)   Phone cutomers, especially young ones, are ditching land lines for a cell-only lifestyle. Another scoop for Ric Romero   (nytimes.com ) divider line
    More: Obvious  
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3205 clicks; posted to Main » on 21 Sep 2008 at 5:43 PM (7 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



109 Comments     (+0 »)
 


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2008-09-21 02:30:28 PM  
I haven't had landline service for 4 years, since I last moved. Before that I kept one old fashioned "if the power's out" corded phone in the closet next to the $15/month local calls only outlet. People that use their landlines are weird and wasteful.
 
2008-09-21 02:34:41 PM  
Land services refused to realize their model was about to go Tango Uniform. I find it ironic that the only way the Bells think they can compete is to re-merge back into one company.
 
2008-09-21 02:42:38 PM  
I went cell-only for awhile, didn't care for it. I have a `land line' now I guess, though it's through my cable provider, I guess it still counts.
 
2008-09-21 02:43:13 PM  

UNC_Samurai: Land services refused to realize their model was about to go Tango Uniform. I find it ironic that the only way the Bells think they can compete is to re-merge back into one company.


Well, why do you think it's the Bells that are fighting tooth and nail against Net Neutrality?
It has nothing to do with any sort of bandwidth crises or cost up network upgrades and everything to do with the fact that their landline phone service is dying.

The POTS network will be needed for decades to come though, if only for Federal Emergency and Military use, and the handful of rednecks who can't or refuse to migrate to cellular.
 
amo
2008-09-21 02:43:53 PM  
Despite the fact that we are on the Do Not Call list, the only people that ever call our land line are telemarketers and surveyors. I can't remember the last time a friend or relative called on it.
 
2008-09-21 02:44:45 PM  
Same here, ditched my land-line phone when I moved, now I just have my cell and naked DSL :)
 
2008-09-21 02:47:30 PM  
Is a 'cutomer' something like a cute polymer?
 
2008-09-21 02:47:47 PM  
I'm on Vonage and Verizon Wireless.

Haven't been in a phone book for the entire 21st Century.
 
2008-09-21 02:54:00 PM  
I haven't had a land line since 1998.
 
2008-09-21 02:54:12 PM  
I've been cell only for a while now. Two years or more. Me and the wife both have a cell anyway, and we live in the suburbs so our reception is fine. Why not?
 
2008-09-21 02:57:07 PM  
My phone network is one old lady named Maude, holding a series of plug wires. I pick up the phone and if she doesn't see me right away, I have to turn the little crank and get her attention. Then I ask her to connect me to someone. If I'm not nice to her, she won't do it. Maude hates my brother, so it takes a little longer for me to make a connection, because Maude always asks, "You're not just doing this for your brother, are you? Because if he picks up the phone after I connect it, I'll drop the whole thing."

I thought a land line was that big black stripe that lets you know that you've crossed out of West Virginia.
 
2008-09-21 02:59:35 PM  

UNC_Samurai: I find it ironic that the only way the Bells think they can compete is to re-merge back into one company.


I find it highly idiotic that the government is allowing these mergers. Why break them up in the first place, if they're just going to allow them to re-merge?

/hasn't had a land line for around three years
 
2008-09-21 03:04:27 PM  

smooshie: Same here, ditched my land-line phone when I moved, now I just have my cell and naked DSL :)


All my girlfriends have DSL's
 
2008-09-21 03:11:06 PM  
I use two cans and a piece of string.
 
2008-09-21 03:37:51 PM  

T-Servo: Is a 'cutomer' something like a cute polymer?


img134.imageshack.us
 
2008-09-21 04:02:38 PM  
Good use of the Ric Rmero cliche. I haven't had a landline in almost a decade.
 
2008-09-21 04:07:19 PM  

rcain: The POTS network will be needed for decades to come though, if only for Federal Emergency and Military use, and the handful of rednecks who can't or refuse to migrate to cellular.


Plus people who realize that even the best cell quality sucks ass compared to POTS. Important business is best handled over a land line because saying "What?" 6 times over the course of a 2 minute conversation kinda irritates the client on the other end. My dads old analog phone from 2001 had better signal quality than the newer phones. I can play movies, read magazines, surf the internet, do everything EXCEPT make a clear phone call.

Cell coverage outside the large cities can be hit and miss as well. I have found that just because you have full bars does not mean you are going to get a clear signal either. Sometimes I have 1 bar and get a better signal than when I have full bars. That signal meter is as accurate as a diving rod. Doing all this work on the road with my current job is getting me really pissed at cell phones. The only good thing with them is no long distance charges.

At work we now use text messages much more because sending specific information, like IP address, subnet masks, gateways, dialer settings, Omni numbers, etc, is so frigin hit and miss on a cell call. You have to repeat everything twice to make sure you got it and even then you mishear a number or two.

POTS is not going to go away. It will be with us in one form or another as long as there is electronic communication.

/Used to think cell phones were the coolest thing.
//I now know better.
 
2008-09-21 04:19:36 PM  
Been cellphone only for almost a year.

/no one calls me on it either, so why not?
 
2008-09-21 04:30:56 PM  
Cellphone only since 1999.
 
2008-09-21 04:56:32 PM  
I _itched my landli_ _ast _ear a_d it's _reat!

/call dropped
 
2008-09-21 05:02:30 PM  
"cutomers"

Emo customers?
 
2008-09-21 05:18:24 PM  
Five years here. Haven't had a real phone since one was forced on me in college. I've still got the original number too, despite moving around so much.
 
2008-09-21 05:26:59 PM  
Two cell phones here... one cheap pay-as-you-go (minutes good for one year) that businesses and bill people get and one personal line that friends/family get.

I don't even carry the other cell phone. It goes straight to voicemail, which then gets picked up by GotVoice to get transcribed for my email.

Cheaper than landline and bonus of screening my calls.
 
2008-09-21 05:51:47 PM  
im Teh innernet speling
 
2008-09-21 05:55:15 PM  

AntiNorm: UNC_Samurai: I find it ironic that the only way the Bells think they can compete is to re-merge back into one company.

I find it highly idiotic that the government is allowing these mergers. Why break them up in the first place, if they're just going to allow them to re-merge?

/hasn't had a land line for around three years


Judge Green was a moron to break them up in the first place. Prices went way up, customer service tanked. Monopolies are not inherently bad, just in the position to be.

That said... since they were broken up the market has totally changed. There is no competition on every front. VOIP and cell phones battle land lines on the personal and business line front. Cable, mobile wi-fi, and satellite internet battle DSL and dialup. Even if all the bells recombine, they would now be far from a monopoly.

The only thing they would have a monopoly on would be Fiber Optic. Even then some is government and privately owned, so this might not even be entirely true anymore.
 
2008-09-21 05:55:18 PM  
My husband and I havent had a landline since 5 years ago when we realized it would be cheaper and easier to have two cell phones.
 
2008-09-21 05:55:44 PM  
All telephonic technology beyond the black Bakelite rotary dial Bell model is a self-indulgent affectation and an abomination.

www.eurocosm.com

/Uphill in the snow both ways.
/get off my lawn.
 
2008-09-21 05:56:35 PM  
i2.photobucket.com

Don'cha love technology?
 
2008-09-21 05:58:44 PM  
Crosshair: Plus people who realize that even the best cell quality sucks ass compared to POTS. Important business is best handled over a land line because saying "What?" 6 times over the course of a 2 minute conversation kinda irritates the client on the other end. My dads old analog phone from 2001 had better signal quality than the newer phones.

This. This. And more of this.

We've gone from "So clear you can hear a pin drop" (and you could), to "CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW??!!"

/sad
 
2008-09-21 06:01:31 PM  
Reason #483 that the polls are a bunch of bullshiat.
 
2008-09-21 06:03:59 PM  
I only use landlines for DSL. And with the advent of cable access, I don't eveh nave that anymore.
 
2008-09-21 06:06:06 PM  

UNC_Samurai: Land services refused to realize their model was about to go Tango Uniform. I find it ironic that the only way the Bells think they can compete is to re-merge back into one company.


The reason that SBC, AT&T and BellSouth merged was not to save their landline service - it was to get all the pieces of Cingular (now AT&T Wireless) together because they realized the POTS line for home use was going the way of the dinosaur and wanted to consolidate the largest wireless telephone network in the country under one company.
 
2008-09-21 06:08:01 PM  
If you are a technically-proficient music lover, you have probably experimented with using different MP3 bitrates to see how compression affects sound quality. You have probably noticed that a setting of 256 kbits/s sounds quite good in your living room, 128 is OK for ear buds, 64 is OK for the car during a thunderstorm, and 32 pretty much sounds like crap for anything.

You have probably also noticed that as the sound degrades, weird and unpleasant things happen, including a ringing around the edges that gets progressively worse as compression increases. It sounds so bad that it hurts.

Talking on a cell phone is like listening to an MP3 at 16 kbits/s. The phone companies compress the living hell out of the signal to reduce bandwidth and save money. Then they try to "enhance" the signal with filters that just make it worse. Everyone sounds like your worst MP3 experiment, except even worse than that.

Yeah, it's really that bad. If you have an ear, you know what I'm talking about.

/Don't get me started on the latency.
 
2008-09-21 06:09:58 PM  
No land line since 2002 and still surviving.

/Talked my mom to drop hers as well.
 
2008-09-21 06:11:59 PM  
As long as we're touting our uber-cool, I've been off landlines for about 7 years. Mostly love it.
 
2008-09-21 06:12:52 PM  
The only reason we had a landline up to a few months ago was because Qwest told me that it was necessary in order to use the DSL, saying that stand alone DSL wasn't available. However, I was & still am pretty certain that's a bunch of BS.

That being said, we switched over to Comcast highspeed & not only is it cheaper, but we're getting much better speeds. Our home is 100% landline free now.
 
2008-09-21 06:13:21 PM  

Nakito: /Don't get me started on the latency.


What about the latency?
 
2008-09-21 06:13:22 PM  
You know what else fails during natural disasters?

Cellular phone towers.

/Keeping landline as backup comm line.
//Works better than HF radio on generator.
 
2008-09-21 06:14:12 PM  
The author has a lot of K's in her name. Probably a farkin' racist. Good to know what's going on in the white community KORKKI. Now report on the trends in pay-as-you-go-phones and I might be interested.
 
2008-09-21 06:14:14 PM  

amo: Despite the fact that we are on the Do Not Call list, the only people that ever call our land line are telemarketers and surveyors. I can't remember the last time a friend or relative called on it.


If you go to donotcall.gov you'll see that it doesn't apply to companies that do political and/or market research surveys, just telemarketers.
 
2008-09-21 06:18:26 PM  
Shrapnel: As long as we're touting our uber-cool, I've been off landlines for about 7 years. Mostly love it.

Nah. Uber-cool is having a copper landline with a high-quality non-cordless analog telephone and a full-size cassette-based answering machine. You can whisper to your girlfriend in the middle of the night and she can hear you in real time. How can it be uber-cool to use a commonplace, cheap, disposable technology that is used by every teen, college student, and soccer mom in the country?
 
2008-09-21 06:19:07 PM  

TossedSaladMan: The author has a lot of K's in her name. Probably a farkin' racist. Good to know what's going on in the white community KORKKI. Now report on the trends in pay-as-you-go-phones and I might be interested.


Huh?
 
2008-09-21 06:19:21 PM  
I only have a landline in order to get ADSL. I have to, since I live in a backwards part of the world.

Those wireless internet dealies look better every day.
 
2008-09-21 06:19:41 PM  
Most of our area is a cell dead zone thanks to the hills and canyons. Everyone here has to have a landline if they want to make a call with any consistency. Or you can go about a mile for reception.

I'd love to ditch it, though!
 
2008-09-21 06:20:49 PM  

Nakito: If you are a technically-proficient music lover, you have probably experimented with using different MP3 bitrates to see how compression affects sound quality. You have probably noticed that a setting of 256 kbits/s sounds quite good in your living room, 128 is OK for ear buds, 64 is OK for the car during a thunderstorm, and 32 pretty much sounds like crap for anything.

You have probably also noticed that as the sound degrades, weird and unpleasant things happen, including a ringing around the edges that gets progressively worse as compression increases. It sounds so bad that it hurts.

Talking on a cell phone is like listening to an MP3 at 16 kbits/s. The phone companies compress the living hell out of the signal to reduce bandwidth and save money. Then they try to "enhance" the signal with filters that just make it worse. Everyone sounds like your worst MP3 experiment, except even worse than that.

Yeah, it's really that bad. If you have an ear, you know what I'm talking about.

/Don't get me started on the latency.


"Hey buddy, meet me at the bar"
click.
"Man, that sounded like shiat!"
 
2008-09-21 06:20:55 PM  
This here's earthquake country in SoCal... you're an idiot if you DON'T have a landline.
 
2008-09-21 06:20:58 PM  
So... apparently i'm the weird one for only having a land line.

At least where i am it's cheaper than a cell.
 
2008-09-21 06:21:25 PM  
One ringy dingy...

tingilinde.typepad.com

/Yes, that's my lawn
//Now get the fark off of it
 
2008-09-21 06:21:27 PM  
Have been landline free for approx. 7 years. The big land-line telcos can stuff it. Add some actual value to your service, and price it competitively, and maybe.. MAYBE you will retain customers, but frankly, your business model is old and dead.
 
2008-09-21 06:23:55 PM  
I have a landline, but I dont use it. The only reason I have it is that DSL is the only broadband available where I am, and the phone company that provides DSL service requires you to get a phone line too. So, obviously, as soon as Cable is available in my area, bye bye phone company!
 
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