January 18 2007

Bye-Bye Landlines

Interesting article at Business Week today about how the number of homes with a land line is dropping. In the first half of 2006, 1 in 8 homes were using something other than a traditional land line as their phone. In 2003 it was 1 in 20.

The weird thing is the article seems to focus mostly on how this will effect research calls and political polling like this is a great tragedy and how they don;t know they will do their polling. How about mentioning WHY this is happening? Landlines are not keeping up with cell phone and VoIP pricing, and so long as they keep their insanely high pricing structure, the number of homes with old style phones will decrease.

How about instead of worrying about how a few pollers will do their job, what about the thousands of phone company employees that will eventually lose their jobs because the phone companies refuse to lower their fees? There was a ton more to this story, but as usual, poor, lazy reporting and missed the bigger picture.

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General Rants Journalism Science & Technology | | | | |

September 21 2007

Phillips VoIP841B

January 9 2007

*head explodes*

  • All the research I did on land lines vs. cell phones in the U.S. indicated that using a cell phone in the long run is more expensive than using a land line. That is, all calls are more expensive from cell phones. Is it really cheaper to have a cell phone than a land line or is it simply cheaper up front?

    As for the Business Week article, remember that they are gearing their information toward businesses and therefore approaching the issue as it may concern businesses who may be footing the bill for telephone research. The issue directly affects them in this fashion.

    Personally, I think a lot of people around me set up their cell phone service in a very selfish manner. That is, they set it up so that the people who call them foot a bigger bill to compensate for their cheap cell phone service. I don’t know if it works that way in the U.S. or not but it’s pretty lame to make your friends and family pay more for your convenience.

  • Shari –
    On the article front, speaking as a businessman, I am far more interested in the potential impact on lost telephone workers jobs than a handful of pollers. The polling companies will simply find a new way to do their job, it could be regional targeting, direct mailings, online, whatever form it may take, they have the potential to fix their problem. The guys installing phone lines in your house, working on the ground wires and so on will have fine a whole new profession if this trend continues, which it will.

    As for cell service in the USA, it is far, far cheaper to have a cell phone than a landline with the majority of programs out there. Even with my BlackBerry, which is a fairly expensive program, if I got reliable signal strength in my house, I would switch over to it full time in a heartbeat.

    On the person making the call to a cell phone being charged front, nope, we don’t have that, at least not on any plan I’ve ever looked at.