Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

2007 Sees Wireless Spending Outstrip Landlines

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the and-what-about-now-okay-how-about-now dept.

Cellphones 81

prostoalex writes "Each December the Bureau of Labor Statistics prepares a report on telecommunications spending among US households. They analyze the previous year's data, so their most recent release says that in 2006 the average US household spent $542 on their landline, and $524 on their wireless bill. The way the curves are headed, 2007 is likely to become the first year when wireless spending will surpass landline spending. 'To be sure, when corporate cell-phone use is counted, overall U.S. spending surpassed land line spending several years ago, analysts said.'"

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Guess I'm a meiser (0)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738226)

I spend $15/month ($9.99+fees and taxes) for my VoIP landline with unlimited in state calling, $15/month for my wifes phone on my folks family share plan and $0 on my cell (provided by work). That adds up to a grand total of $360 for total communications budget. My company also picks up my internet. I guess the telcos must dislike people like me, which is great because the feeling is mutual =)

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (1)

aadvancedGIR (959466) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738304)

I have 10Mb/s ADSL including TV, phone and unlimited calls to half of the world for about this price. And my mobile phone provider only ask me to make at least two phone calls each year, so my mobile phone costs me less than 30E a year, HW included. Of course, I'm neither average or american.

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (3, Interesting)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738514)

In Europe we have Pay As You Go SIMs. You buy one for say $30 and it comes with $25 worth of credit and often some bundled text messages. When you run out, you buy a voucher and top it up. The killer thing is that you only pay for calls, there is no monthly fee. Originally calls were more expensive, but competition has forced down prices. And if you have an unlocked phone which cost a bit more than locked ones but are usually available, when you go abroad you just buy a local SIM and avoid roaming charges.

In fact if you read industry internal stuff you find phrases like this
http://www.ovum.com/news/euronews.asp?id=4326 [ovum.com]

It is likely the increase of prepaid customers contributed to the decline in data ARPU, which was lower year-on-year at 74 Euros (annual figure).
ARPU is "Average Revenue Per User". So Pre Pay is cheaper. From the perspective of the telcos, sometimes it is disasterously so

http://www.fin24.co.za/articles/default/display_article.aspx?ArticleId=1518-24_2220175 [fin24.co.za]

Vodacom said in a statement that it is the group's policy to disconnect inactive prepaid SIM cards after seven months without a revenue generating activity on the Vodacom network.
So the ARPU for some pre paid customers was literally zero. Presumably there's some cost to keeping them connected, so Vodafone was making a loss.

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (1)

argiedot (1035754) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739234)

It's the same here in India except there are no locked phones that I can recall. Everything is unlocked and you just go buy a phone you want and stick a SIM you want in it. You can even buy two SIMs and switch between them (this actually makes sense if you have one of those long-validity plans on both, and one is on a long-distance plan) whenever you have to make a call. At one time, you were permitted a certain number of messages per day (usually 100) for free for one rupee (around 2 eurocents) and that was standard across most networks. Times have changed though.

My spending is average. So I pay Rs. 331 (170 rupees worth of talk time and valid for 30 days) + Rs. 69 (20 paise/minute to same provider, 49 paise/minute to others) for about 14 hours of talk time which is adequate for me (I'm in college). Total: Rs. 400, 8 euros. Slashdot doesn't accept '', the euro sign? Weird.

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738558)

I don't have it as good as you, but let's see if I'm average:

$24.95/mo for VOIP (including $5/month for alias phone number) * 12 = $300
cellphone is like $40 / month * 12 = $480

Hmph. Guess not. In more than one way. I spend a WHOLE lot less on my landline than I do on my wireless, and I spend, on average, less for my wireless.

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21738952)

What's a meiser?

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (1)

bcattwoo (737354) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740556)

What's a meiser?
A German miser.

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (1)

edmicman (830206) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740508)

Not a miser, but I'd say you're in the fortunate(?) minority who is able to mooch off a parent's cell phone service and have your work pick up your own cell and internet service. I would guess the majority of people out there actually have to pay for their own stuff :-).

Re:Guess I'm a meiser (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#21742626)

It's not exactly mooching, I pay them the $180 per year it costs for my line. For the main line my dad is getting more pool minutes for significantly less than he used to pay. He gets like 6,000 minutes for less than he used to pay for 2,000 minutes and now he has no overage charges which would often double his bill. My wife uses a couple hundred minutes a month of which probably 90% are mobile to mobile which doesn't come out of the pool minutes. Oh yeah and the ? is definitely warranted, the reason my employer picks up my service is that I am oncall 1 week a month, but I probably average 4 calls per year so it works out well I think =)

Jews (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21738240)

A violent and bloodthirsty people, Jews are renound for taking property, homes, and lives wherever they go.

A nigger will rob your house. A Jew will sell you a variable rate mortgage, and then take your house and everything in it. If you are a sand nigger, a Jew will kill you and bulldoze your hose.

Jews and Niggers are just aweful

Love My Cell Phone! (1)

Skeetskeetskeet (906997) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738278)

I haven't had a land line since 2002....I determined I was spending roughly $40 a month for phone and $60 a month for cell, and I was using the land line only 10% of the month..so I got rid of the land line and rolled some of the land line cost into the cell for extra minutes and unlimited Internet....haven't looked back since.

Landline? (2, Funny)

RandoX (828285) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738302)

Didn't know you could still get those.

Re:Landline? (0, Redundant)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738362)

Yup. I have one with nothing but DSL plugged into it. When my phone service was set up, it was either spend $30/mo on DSL with ~$8/mo for a landline for it to ride on, or spend $60/mo for the same level of service from Speakeasy without a landline.

Re:Landline? (2, Funny)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738468)

or spend $60/mo for the same level of service from Speakeasy without a landline

You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means. Now if you mean the same advertised bandwidth then it's possible, but they aren't remotely the same service either from a TOS perspective or from a customer service perspective.

Re:Landline? (2, Interesting)

aadvancedGIR (959466) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738388)

The funny thing is that, in most developped countries, the landline usage is actually rising thanks to the ADSL, while in third world countries, everyone has a mobile phone because the infrastructures can be way cheaper than creating a full coverage landline grid from scratch.

Re:Landline? (1)

MrNemesis (587188) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738948)

Most of my friends buy a landline for ADSL but never plug a phone into it. Almost everyone defaults to calling or texting someone on their mobile first, with landlines generally being used as a last resort. Paradoxically, it's often cheaper or the same price to call a mobile anyway, thanks to the plethora of "any network" free minutes. It's this sort of behaviour that's led to the huge adoption in the use of the term "land line" as well, as opposed to "phone line" which was common until mobiles got a foothold.

Not sure how that usage compares to most people in the US where you have to pay for your incoming calls though.

Re:Landline? (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739268)

That's actually he main reason i originally got a mobile. I could talk to my sister 450 miles away cheaper and longer than without. On the plus side when i went to visit her I still had a phone from which i could call back home at the same damn rate, only using my minutes.

$40 a month isn't bad when i can use it as my primary and only phone. I am tempted to get an iPhone for coolness factor but in order to do so I will have to also get the $20 a month data plan.

There are some positive aspects to land lines (4, Funny)

roystgnr (4015) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738888)

On the one hand, you have to make and receive all your phone calls from the same place, but on the other hand you get to decide elections. They say one vote can't make a difference, but that doesn't apply to election polls where there's only five landline-owners left to poll and the other four are 90 year olds planning on voting for Roosevelt.

Re:Landline? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21745662)

They must mean VOIP.

Re:Landline? (1)

jridley (9305) | more than 6 years ago | (#21757856)

I sure hope so. Cell coverage is pretty much nonexistant where I live. I have a cell, but it's a cheapo Virgin Mobile phone.

VoIP isn't a good idea either. Even though they CLAIM that all their equipment is battery-backed, I still lose signal immediately upon power failure, and my neighbors that have their VoIP service lose dialtone instantly.

I've tried all cell providers, and the best I can get at home is "you might get a signal, if the stars are in alignment, but if you make a call, talk fast because you'll get disconnected within 2 minutes, even if you go outside to make the call."

Not surprisingly, my cell usage averages about 4 minutes a month. It's just for calling home to see what color widget they wanted, or whatever. At $5/month into my account and 18 cents a minute coming out, after almost 2 years I now have > $100 saved in my account, because I just never use the thing.

$ spent but how? (5, Insightful)

ed.han (444783) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738374)

um...duh?

landlines don't give you varying costs, usage limitations, texting plans, ringtones, MP3s, games, yadda yadda yadda. all landlines do is let you talk/fax.

of course mobile phone spending is gonna outstrip it. the real question to me is why did it take this long?

ed

Re:$ spent but how? (1)

Selfbain (624722) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738612)

I'd assume because cell phone service quality isn't as good (but improving) as land lines.

re:$ spent but how? (2, Insightful)

ed.han (444783) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738686)

perfectly reasonable point, but isn't the overage charge horror story one that we all have? i had one in the amount of $600 or so. haven't we all done something like that, or at least know someone who has? and isn't it common for teens and other new user to exceed minutes/txt limitations/month?

see, i think that more ways to spend money is part of it, but i think part of it is also exceeding restrictions/overuse charges.

ed

Re:$ spent but how? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739196)

I live in South FL. I can tell you that Cells don't work as well as landlines during and right after hurricanes. For all the crap they pull Bell South did the best job of all the utilities in keeping there system up. I could never go with Vontage simply because my cable modem is down more often than it is up.

Re:$ spent but how? (1)

piltdownman84 (853358) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740118)

My local land line company is almost as bad with all the add on crap they sell. Call Display, Caller Reveal, Voice Mail, Voicemail Plus, Call Waiting, Call waiting plus, Call Forwarding, Smart Ring, Anonymous caller ID, Call gate, Call Screen, Talking Call Waiting, Internet Call Director, Long Distance 200, Long Distance Saver, Long Distance Saver Plus, etc...

Still their basic phone rate is around the same as Vonage with unlimited long distance.

Re:$ spent but how? (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 6 years ago | (#21742698)

all landlines do is let you talk/fax.

and access the Internet through a dial-up connection. there are a remarkable number of home town ISPs that have that to be a profitable niche market.

landline and cell reliability (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21743674)

landlines don't give you varying costs, usage limitations, texting plans, ringtones, MP3s, games, yadda yadda yadda. all landlines do is let you talk/fax.


Landlines don't stop working when there's a power outage. A lot of cell systems don't have back-up power on their towers.

Re:$ spent but how? (1)

jaydanie (1197285) | more than 6 years ago | (#21817802)

The phone monopolies have been overcharging us for years. Here are few facts, why does anyone need a land-line phone? Well obviously business still use the phone company as their phone and internet provider or high speed connection. So the ma bells have just a few more years before satellite or cable takes this business. As for individuals, there is no need to have both a cell and land-line phone. Most families have multiple cell phones anyway, so why pay 2 bills? There was a time if you wanted any type of credit, to purchase a home, etc, you were required to have a "home phone" which was defined as a permenant land-line phone. However, today with half americans almost bankrupt, there is no reason to keep spending on a home phone. Therefore, in the coming months the number with home phones will get smaller and smaller and the mini ma bells which purchase from the big bells will have to up their prices for businesses just to survive. I give it 5 years and the phone companies will be bust or they will sell out to cellular or cable companies. Many of the companies are already in the cellular and cable biz. They seen it coming 7 years ago. Why did it take this long? Mainly, as stated above, a land-line use to be a requirement to get a loan, not any more. America has been sold out to the highest bidder, now we are broke, making 1980 wages, and don't need credit because we don't have any - but we got internet and a cell phone! Saw a skit on the news that stated that people over 90 days late on their cc payments are up 50% this month and it would only get worse next year.

I don't even have... (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738378)

I don't even have a landline. The only hours that I'm home, are the hours when nobody would call. That said, I _hate_ speculative articles like these. This is not news, it's speculation. That's what these idiots are for. [digg.com]

knew this was coming (1)

nozzo (851371) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738396)

It's not surprising, wires seem so 90's when I stop to look at my wireless network, home phone, printer, 5.1 surround sound speakers (yeah it is cool) Won't be long till wireless power is an everyday thing.

Re:knew this was coming (1)

nozzo (851371) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739306)

oh THAT kind of wireless

Only calls on landline were telemarkers (4, Interesting)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738448)

I reached a point three years ago where the only calls I got on my landline any more were telemarketers.
So I cancelled it and went to a $55 a month plan with rollover minutes. I finally exceeded that in August ($127! Ouchee!) and had to go to a $65 a month plan.

I recently got a $16 a month AT&T line just so I could find my phone when I lose it tho. I leave the ringer off and it is good for 25 outgoing calls. If i get a call when I am off plan that looks like it will be long, I take the call on the land line. This is helpful during the holidays when I am off a lot during off-plan hours.

Re:Only calls on landline were telemarkers (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738862)

I recently got a $16 a month AT&T line just so I could find my phone when I lose it tho.

When I first moved to Burnsville, MN in November of 2002 I was able to get a QWest landline that charged per minute (it included 180 minutes per month of outgoing calls). After arguing w/the rep for several minutes (more than 15) that this was indeed what I wanted as I used my mobile for all my calls, I had a pretty decent plan for under $20/mo (I believe it was $18.95/mo). I had ATTBI/Comcast Internet there (QWest did not offer DSL service to my building -- I assume because AT&T bought them out) and paid $42.95/mo because I owned my own modem.

When I moved to Apple Valley, MN in 2004 I found that Frontier not only did not offer this type of rate plan but that their landline cost over $30 and that I was required to have one for DSL because Charter cable blocks ports like 22, 25, and 80. I now pay $89/mo for DSL and phone in addition to my mobile costs. With unlimited data Internet on my T-mobile Sidekick with unlimited SMS I pay less than $50/mo. That doesn't include my wife's $30/mo T-mobile plan.

So while I'm very close I haven't gone over. If I still lived under QWest I would have years ago...

Re:Only calls on landline were telemarkers (1)

name*censored* (884880) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739010)

Why not get a prepaid mobile instead of your landline? I'm not sure how things work in the US of A, but over here (Australia) we can buy mobiles upfront (for between ~$50 and ~$1000), and a SIM card (either comes with the phone if from a dealer, or for $2). The catch is that you have to put money into it (and almost every telecom company has a minimum of $30 recharge), and it expires (a new fad over here). Still, this means that if you use your mobile very infrequently (ie, you use it when you can't communicate through some other, cheaper means, not as a fashion accessory for your face) it'll work out cheaper than line rental ($16/mo vs $30/3 mo+$50 for junky phone). It also means that you can spill any excess usage from your regular phone into your junky phone (75 outgoing calls sounds about right for $30 credit), it'll give you a backup mobile (and everything that entails - a backup alarm/clock/radio/etc) and you won't be locked in to anything.

Also, a lot of mobile companies have promos for special rates on a limited number of "friends" numbers; see if you can't take advantage of one of those (obviously making your main phone one of your "friends").

Re:Only calls on landline were telemarkers (1)

wile_e_wonka (934864) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739556)

You can add one more thing to make your system even better. Sign up for Google's (free) Grand Central [grandcentral.com] service. Put your cell phone and your landline on the service. When someone calls your Grand Central phone number (you can choose a phone number in any area code), both your phones will ring. You can choose which phone you want to answer. And if you're mid-conversation and want to switch phones (say, you just walked in your house and want to switch to your home phone; or you are just leaving and want to switch to the cell), you just press * and the other phone will ring, you pick the other phone up and continue the conversation like nothing happened, and hang up the phone you were originally on.

Then you can switch to a cell plan with far fewer minutes and your total communications cost is lower (because you can take calls on and switch calls to your home phone. Switching a call to your home phone is an inbound call, so it should be free).

Truthfully, I really like the service, though I got it for a different reason--my wife and I have cell phones in different area codes, and we don't live in either of those area codes. So I got a local Grand Central number for our local friends to call. Also, it makes it so I can call my wife from work (where I have bad cell reception) without calling long distance.

Re:Only calls on landline were telemarkers (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740388)

I recently got a $16 a month AT&T line just so I could find my phone when I lose it tho. I leave the ringer off and it is good for 25 outgoing calls.

Wow. Using a local provider I get a basic phone line [grandecom.com] for $20 per month, no limits. Though like yours about 90% of incoming calls are telemarketers who don't even leave a message.

Its not for the reason that's intimated (1)

rob_squared (821479) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738454)

The suggestion here is that people use their wireless phones more, and while that's still true for some demographics, I think the demographics that don't still outnumber those that do. If you want to see the real reason, look at the price packages that cell companies offer. Most contracted plans start at $40 and people usually choose higher priced plans with extras because they're so afraid of overages.

Re:Its not for the reason that's intimated (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738836)

You Americans really pay way too much for mobile. I am having a plan of 300 mins, call-forwarding, all the basics, and pay only $50 per month. Hong Kong $ that is - 7.8 to the USD. Cheaper plans are available. Even pre-paid exists. For USD50 per month I can get an unlimited GPRS data plan, and for double that price an unlimited G3 data plan. And more minutes that you can ever use. In contrast I'm charged about $120 per month for my land line, three of 'm, and those I really need in office. But that again includes unlimited local calls.

Re:Its not for the reason that's intimated (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739438)

Cellular service in Europe is cheaper because there are lower barriers to entry for cell providers. In the US, there's just so much land, there's a huge capital investment in building out the network. Not so with Eurpose due to the smaller footprint.

Re:Its not for the reason that's intimated (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739566)

You must be American. And a bit geographically challenged. I was talking about Hong Kong. OK it used to be a British colony, but that doesn't make it anywhere NEAR Europe! I have to admit of course the land area in Hong Kong is not big. Though there are quite some mountains in the way and half of the territory is country park...

Re:Its not for the reason that's intimated (1)

arkane1234 (457605) | more than 6 years ago | (#21745344)

ou Americans really pay way too much for mobile. I am having a plan of 300 mins, call-forwarding, all the basics, and pay only $50 per month. Hong Kong $ that is - 7.8 to the USD.

I'm American, and I have a plan through AT&T/Cingular that's $85USD for 450 mins/month with rollover and GPRS & 3G unlimited data, 1500 SMS & MMS.

It's $39 USD for the 1500 text/sms & data, and $45/month for phone service.

If I used more than 450 minutes in a month, I'd actually think about using Skype, but since I usually let ~300 rollover every month, I think I'm pretty set.

Spending as a statistic? (2, Insightful)

TheLoneGundam (615596) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738524)

landline plans start at around 15 USD a month, cell phone plans start at what, 39 USD? So, total dollars spent is meaningless except as a metric for potential businesses to see how much money they can make. It's similar to comparing box office dollar amounts between years -- if the ticket prices is higher in one year than the other, then total dollar comparisons don't reveal anything about usage. A better metric would be the number of land line accounts vs. cell phone accounts

Revenue vs subscriber #'s (1)

Ritz_Just_Ritz (883997) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738848)

It won't be long before the actual subscriber numbers mirror this (if they aren't already). I have a number of friends that live in Beijing now (and I occasionally do too) and the VAST majority of them don't even have a land line. People are quite happy to rely on their mobile phone. Recent government stats in China show land line subscribers falling for the first time in the last few months while mobile numbers are still accelerating upwards. I'll likely do the same (punt the landline) at my US residence this year too. My only "hard link" to the world will be the cablemodem so I can enjoy relatively cheap broadband. If the mobile carriers ever figure out how to offer reliable high bandwidth data access, I'll lose the cablemodem too.

It will be nice to save a little money, but even nicer to be able to pick up and move around without dealing with number portability, billing hassles, changing equipment, etc.

Cheers,

Re:Spending as a statistic? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21739202)

numbers won't be good either since a person could have one $15 landline that he never uses and a cellphone plan with 5000+ minutes. that does not mean landline and cellphones are valued equally by that user. bandwidth usage seems to be a better metric.

Whats a Landline (1)

GodCandy (1132301) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738534)

I have not had a land line sense college. The only reason I really had one then was because the dorm had one in it and I didn't have to pay for it. I have always used my cell phone for everything. It is just too convenient. I don't know why anyone would even need a land line if they did not need to fax something to someone (which can be done via the internet for a fee). I cant believe that it has taken this long either. I would have figured that when every member of a family has a cell phone the bill for that would far outweigh the bill for the land line. Ah well, its cool to see us all going wireless.

Re:Whats a Landline (2, Interesting)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738710)

I have a VoIP number, just to have a "local, home" number with unlimited calling. Yet it's often done more harm than good. Everyone I know gets confused beyond belief if I ever call them with more than one number, and yes, even once I explain that one is a cell and one is home.

Has anyone had problems with giving a cell number to hospitals, law enforcement, etc? I was given a speeding ticket and the officer said cell numbers are not acceptable.

Also, are apartments, employers, etc. okay with out-of-area-code contact numbers?

Re:Whats a Landline (1)

cashman73 (855518) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738884)

Has anyone had problems with giving a cell number to hospitals, law enforcement, etc? I was given a speeding ticket and the officer said cell numbers are not acceptable.

I've never heard of that before. If anyone asks for my phone number (I only have a cell) for official business, I just give them my cell phone number. I usually just put that in the 'home' number field if it's a form. Telemarketers, of course, get nothing (if you're a telemarketer, I live in the dark ages and have no phone number! Sorry! ;-)

Re:Whats a Landline (1)

GodCandy (1132301) | more than 6 years ago | (#21765750)

I thought about getting a VoIP line but it has little benefit besides a local number. I have Sprint cell phones with free long distance and my nights begin at 7pm thus 90% of my calls to friends and family fall into that range. Everything else is work related and I am in the office most of the day so I use the phone there.

As for apartments, employers, ect. giving me grief about a long distance number I have not had a real problem besides they tend to write it down wrong because they are not used to the area code.

As for the ticket and the officer giving you grief over the phone number. I cant say that I have ever seen that. I wouldn't see any legal reason that your phone number being in a different area code would cause conflict. Best guess is the officer was being a prick and was trying to find something to harass you about. I was not aware that you even had to have a phone to be a licensed driver in most states.

Hopefully things will change and people will learn that our society is moving away from the old land based telephone and using cellular service for all of our calling needs.

Re:Whats a Landline (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#21765848)

Regarding the officer: He didn't demand a local number, he said it couldn't be a cell phone. (i.e. the problem wasn't the area code) Don't worry, it's normal for me to be given restrictions that others don't have to follow. The officer was, in all other ways, being a prick, so that's a good theory, and if it matters, that was late '03.

And the phone number wasn't demanded with the license. Only after he issued the ticket, when I needed to give contact information, did he ask for a phone number and said it couldn't be a cell.

And about apartments/doctors: do people normally give out-of-area code #s when registering their primary contact info? Also, when they set up the voice permission system for the front gate (so I can let people in) they said it had to be a local number. But, like everything else, I'm sure they dont' hold anyone else to that standard.

Can't tell from the article (1)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738590)

Does land-line include cable (Optimum Voice, Vonage, etc.)? I still want to have a land-line, but I'm tired of paying Verizon $90 a month. I plan on switching to Optimum Voice so I can consolidate my bills and save some cash.

2008 sees creators disempowering nazi execrable (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21738634)

no payper gadgets required. it's really no contest, but it would be good for you/us if more of us would help some.

the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption.

we're intending for the nazis to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather'.

http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying [google.com]

fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way

do not be afraid/dismayed, it is the way it was meant to be. consider all of yOUR other options.

the little ones/innocents must/will be protected.

after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit?

for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available.

all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven.

no need to fret (unless you're associated/joined at the hype with, unprecedented evile), it's all just a part of the creators' wwwildly popular, newclear powered, planet/population rescue initiative/mandate.

or, is it (literally) ground hog (as in dead meat) day, again? many of US are obviously not interested in/aware of how we appear (which is whoreabull) from the other side of the 'lens', or even from across the oceans.

vote with (what's left in) yOUR wallet. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable.

some of US should consider ourselves very fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate.

it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc....

as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis.

concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order.

'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (4, Insightful)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738794)

I had both for a long time. But I found the expense of the cell exceeded its usefulness and downsides.

The McLuhan inversion of the cellphone is "the tether" and I intensely dislike being at everyone's beck and call, and PAYING for the "privilege", I ditched the cell.

If you want me - land line at either my home or office. If it's less urgent, then email me. If it requires instant attention and I'm on the clock, then IM me. If I'm not responding, instantly, then perhaps I'm TAKING A SHIT AND WANT TO BE LEFT ALONE.

A cell is no guarantee of access anyway - when I did have it, it was usually turned off.

Then there's the downside. My brother ditched landline for cell. We have a conversation. He walks to the otherside of his apartment and he gets dropped. Last night I call a friend who also ditched landline. The conversation w nt som t ng li e th s. Garbage. I was able to get enough to him to tell him to email me with his questions, oh, and ditch the fucking cellphone.

with my landline, I have infinite long distance all over north america. I have DSL and web hosting rolled into it, and with my "extra services" I think I pay around CDN$100 a month.

And I'm a lot happier being "less accessible".

RS

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738932)

Mmm... still too expensive. Canada is not much better than USA. Now in Hong Kong, I pay $50 (about USD6) per month for my mobile, including 300 minutes calling. I have an IDD plan of $65 (USD 8.5) for 500 mins calling to a.o. USA, Canada, and most European countries. IDD plan is for my mobile and land lines (in my office). That's all. Oh well EU mobiles not included and I do surpass that 500 mins a bit sometimes so pay in the end maybe $500 (USD 60 or so) total for calling. 200-300 mins usage mobile, and about 600-800 mins per month international. Quite managable.
At this kind of prices I don't use VOIP like Skype; costs more and worse quality. I only use it for videophone with my parents so they can see my baby.

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21739366)

The conversation w nt som t ng li e th s

Som t ng li e wh t? Wh t do y u me n by "th s"? Pl s pr vid an ex mpl .

Th ks,
A onym us C w rd

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (1)

B3ryllium (571199) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739628)

You're one of those delusional TELUS users, aren't you? ;-)

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (1)

Frankie70 (803801) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739688)


I intensely dislike being at everyone's beck and call, and PAYING for the "privilege"

That's a uniquely American thing. In most countries, you don't pay for
incoming calls on cellphones - just like landlines.

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (1)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740032)

Well, I'm in Canada, but I know what you're saying. My point is: paying for landline only is cheaper than paying for both, and the quality of cell is so bad, a landline is required. Therefore: I am PAYING for the privilege of the tether, regardless of the (non)cost of incoming calls.

RS

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21740632)

I did the same, for similar reasons a few years back.

Some personal relationships suffered, but others thrived.

Most people on hearing that I've ditched the cell say "How brave, I'd love to do that". Some say I'm crazy.

Truth is, I miss it... perhaps two or three times a year.

The things you notice, not being an insider though: no one wears watches anymore; time is malleable - social arrangements are less tied to particular times and more negotiable, e.g. before: meet at 8pm, now: I'll call you when I'm near. Because of this flexibility/negotiability, people will break prior engagements more easily.

Of course, this is all anecdotal, and could be down to me. But I don't think it is.

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (1)

cuantar (897695) | more than 6 years ago | (#21742166)

I've noticed something of the opposite, as well: because cell phone clocks are synchronized with the cell towers, nobody's personal timepiece is five minutes slow anymore. The result is that 12:00 means 12:00 sharp. A minute late is late enough to be offensive, because nobody has an excuse now.

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#21746348)

Well, I have a cell phone, and I just turn the ringer off most of the time. I do like the convenience of making calls from anywhere, but I don't necessarily like sharing that convenience, if you know what I mean.

Landlinewise, I have AT&T/SBC's Callvantage VoIP service ... so far I gotta say I've been happy with it. I connected the D-Link box they provided to my house wiring and it works like a charm. Comcastoff had me up to $86/month (!!!) for phone service (started out at $39.95 a few years ago) and they just kept jacking it up: finally I was sitting there one day paying my bills, when I remembered what a coworker had said about his Callvantage setup. Now I pay about $60 for my broadband connection, and $24.95/month for VoIP, and I haven't looked back.

What I found very useful about my Callvantage service is that a. you can configure whitelists on their Web site: only numbers on that list will ring your phone and b. it can automatically forward calls on that list to another line (my cell phone) and send a text message to the cell with the Caller ID info in it. I never bother to give out my cell phone number anymore. Don't need to.

The only other option I have for local service is SBC, and they're no better than Comcast. Matter of fact, last time I moved they billed me $350 for installation plus the regular setup charges ... according to them, the tech spent eight hours wiring my house. As it happens, my place was wired back in 1971: he came in, checked for dialtone, and left. What a crock. Of course, not to be outdone, I once had a Comcast technician wire my lines backwards (reversed both the lines and ring and tip!) and just leave bare wires hanging in midair. Old Ma Bell is long gone, I'm afraid. Dead and buried.

Also, as a software developer I still occasionally have to deal with modem-based stuff, so I couldn't go all cellular even if I were so inclined.

Re:Gave up Cellphone, long live landlines (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21776280)

If you want to only have a landline because the cellphone's a tether that's certainly fine.. but here's how I view the cellphone.
          In terms of cell phone etiquette, there seems to be two ways to handle it. One, (which I guess you're stuck with if you're actually "on call" for a job) answer every call and deal with it. THAT'S a definite tether. The other way (which I subscribe to) is to not answer a call if I don't fell like it. The caller should not expect you'll answer just because they call (the same way landlines are treated). If they break that etiquette and are like "Ohhh, I totally called you why didn't you answer?!?!" I can then say "Yeah, my phone didn't ring" or "I didn't hear my phone ringing" depending on which I prefer.

          Second part of this, the trick to a cell phone is to get the right provider. I suppose the market players in Canada are different, but in general in the US it seems in most markets there will be like at least 4 or 5 cell phone competitors (Almost any market will have at least 2 of Verizon Wireless, Cingular, or Alltel, plus a few local providers.) Usually at least one of those providers will run a really top-notch network for call quality etc. And usually at least one provider will have a totally hosed network, i.e. dropouts, garbling (usually if it's GSM), or the infamous CDMA "Charlie Brown's teacher" effect (with CDMA, either because the signal is too weak, or in the case of overloaded CDMA sites because the noise level is too high.) The trick is to pick out one that works well. Personally, with the CDMA cell provider I have, the first ring on my outgoing calls will sound ridiculously choppy while something gets it's shit together, and the rest of the call will sound perfect.

my only landline (1)

cashman73 (855518) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738832)

The only landline phone I have is in the office at work, so thankfully I don't have to pay for it. I'd have to look on the phone to tell you the number, though (then again, I don't know my own cell phone number, either, but that's a different story, as I never call it ;-). I use my cell phone for everything, and inter-office communication is done by email or direct face-to-face contact.

already been true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21738960)

I think this has been true in the developed world for a long time. Second tier tech countries like the USA are just now starting to emulate the rest of the world.

Landmines? (2, Funny)

beders (245558) | more than 6 years ago | (#21738996)

I bought a job lot just after the first Gulf War, haven't spent a penny on them in years...

Re:Landmines? (1)

Pike65 (454932) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740242)

Got to admit, that's how I read it at first too.

Just when I thought I'd finally escaped that thrice accursed bell curve : (

F*ck landlines (1)

jsepeta (412566) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739100)

to hell with sbc/ameritech/whatever they call themselves. their service was crappy, their rates too high, and now that i'm paying $200/month to f*ckin' t-mobile, there's no money left for a landline.

Our household has more cells than landlines (1)

Secrity (742221) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739156)

It used to be that most households had one phone line. For a little while during the dialup ISP era, there were some homes that had two phone lines. Our household got rid of the second phone line long ago when we got broadband cable. We are now back to one land line, that is used mostly for conference calls, many of which are REALLY long, and my partner and I each have a cell phone. I also have an employer provided Crackberry.

The landline is a basic unlimited local phone line and other than toll free calls we don't place long distance calls on it. We each have very basic $30 a month plans that include 500 anytime minutes, free after 7 PM, and unlimited data. So, for about $90 a month we get three phone lines; two of which, for us, includes essentially unlimited free long distance. I can remember paying more than $90 a month for a single land line and long distance charges.

For now, we will not give up our land line and corded phones. A few years ago we found out how long cell phone service and broadband cable service lasts after the power goes out -- it is less than a few hours. During a three day power outage we had the only working telephone in our condo building; some people only had cell phones and the ones who had land lines only had cordless phones. We had neighbors who wouldn't even say 'hi' before the power outage all of a sudden feel a need to get to know us -- and our phone. After about the first day, we also had people come by asking me if I could make their useless, and now dying, cordless phone stop beeping.

Hills and Kids (1)

pickapeppa (731249) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739172)

The only folks I know that still have a land line are people who have kids old enough to use the phone but too young for a cell phone, or people who live in places without service by accident of geography. 'Cell' service is (slowly) improving. I no longer have to walk up to the street to use my phone at my folks house in hilly Pittsburgh. I reckon before long personal land lines will be like Barney DVDs, something that disappears from the home when the kids get old enough.

mo3 down (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21739206)

ias the grou-p that

Corporate Landline use? (1)

Frankie70 (803801) | more than 6 years ago | (#21739592)


To be sure, when corporate cell-phone use is counted, overall U.S. spending surpassed land line spending several years ago, analysts said


What about when corporate landline use is counted?
I would think corporate land-line would be far more than corporate cell use.
Also think about the number of international & interstate conference calls happening
through land lines.

Re:Corporate Landline use? (1)

arkane1234 (457605) | more than 6 years ago | (#21744986)

Corporations are going the VoIP route, also.
I know where I work, or entire 10K+ employee base uses VoIP.

Landmines (1)

stephenmowry (1117519) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740188)

I originally misread the title of this. I thought it said: "2007 Sees Wireless Spending Outstrip Landmines". I was like, "Hmm, that sounds interesting...". You can imagine my disappointment after discovering it was about Landlines. YAWWWNNNNN...

VoIP? (1)

mike449 (238450) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740408)

I wonder how they counted VoIP services. As a landline?
The share of VoIP is substantial in Ontario, to the point where Bell Canada has to run landline commercials and is offering their own VoIP "home phone".

Hmmm.. (1)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 6 years ago | (#21740582)

No landline at home: 0$

Cellphone bill: Greater than my landline spending.

Yup. TFA is correct.

ps- It is great to not have the phone ring at some inopportune time with a telemarketer, especially when they are calling to offer me a home loan BECAUSE I JUST GOT A NEW HOME LOAN.

Sorry, different rant.

Proud to contribute (1)

Sheepless (783722) | more than 6 years ago | (#21741062)

I'm proud that my initial iPhone bills will contribute to this effort. AT&T FTW!

Pretty damn miserly myself (1)

Average (648) | more than 6 years ago | (#21741306)

The choice of cable vs DSL is clear as day here. The ma-and-pa local cable company isn't cheap has a strict download cap. Past it, they charge like hell per MB. Plus, I have no interest in cable TV (particularly when the most-basic TV plan is $630 a year after taxes... hell no). DSL is pretty reasonably priced.

As such, I need a landline for my DSL. I actually use it a fair bit. I trimmed it as much as possible (there was a fee to have a long-distance provider... I finally convinced them I wanted no long distance ability at all).

For cellphones, I average about $120 a year of spending on Tracfone. I don't even use the 800 minutes a year that gives me. I know 15c/minute sounds bad, but a normal plan is, what, $450 or $500 a year after taxes? With the Tracfone, I get unlimited incoming SMS, including email->SMS. This, I use as a "server is down" automated pager.

And, I pay for Skype unlimited.

So, my annual pay for phones (including some mobility, and all the long-distance I want) and sorta-broadband internet is $660 a year including taxes. And, no cable TV bill. Could be worse.

Ditched the landline 10 years ago (2, Interesting)

morrison (40043) | more than 6 years ago | (#21741444)

About a decade ago now, I cancelled my landline service when the first dual-band cell phones came out. Being in the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area, coverage was pretty decent although there were pockets of poor signal strength. Overall, though, it was more than good enough for my purposes 99% of the time even given how mobile I am, traveling around to conferences around the country. I did have a a few arguments with some businesses a decade ago where they couldn't comprehend how someone would not have a "home phone" and that I only carried a cell phone. I argued with my neighborhood pizza place that recognized the phone prefix as not being a "home phone" -- the prefix was a dead give-away as a cell phone at the time (they wouldn't take orders from cell phones due to prank cell calls). Even that and arguments with my bank, though, were resolved easily enough once I convinced them that I was absolutely serious.

My reasoning for dropping the landline was simple. If I want to talk to someone, it makes sense to call a *person* and not a *location*. It makes no sense to me to call a location when you're looking for a person unless you know you can't call them directly or you are absolutely sure where they are at. So by only having a cell phone, my friends and family could call me and know that, if I answered, they would be talking to me. If I didn't answer, I was either not available or simply not interested in talking to them at that time. Even with only a cell phone, the phone is primarily for *my* convenience, not the convenience of others (and I expect no differently of others unless it's a business). I find it absurd that some people feel compelled to answer their phone when it inconveniences them.

The last point to share was that the phone was a good one (and damn expensive). A lot of my friends in the same area had utterly *horrible* reception primarily because they bought crap phones or even accepted the "free" ones that were comp'd with the service. I think it's still just as true today and a reason why a lot of people haven't yet converted or don't like dealing with cell phones. You get what you pay for and too many people pay more attention to the short term up-front cost than the long term maintenance and reliability. Get the high-end phone.

Save yourself the money on the landline. Buy the best cell phone you can find. Spend more quality time with them in person.

FWIW, the telemarketing calls stopped almost instantly. Took five years before I got a single telemarketer call and by then I knew exactly who gave out my number (Comcast) and they got an earful in return. None since.

Landline is expensive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21741866)

I'm actually surprised by this since I pay way more for my landline than cell phone. The PUC has made Verizon offer landlines at low cost, and Verizon has retaliated by making it nearly impossible to sign up. At first I just used my cellphone, but sometimes I would miss calls or get poor signal so I decided to get a landline. Well after two weeks of inaction from Verizon I finally called another company, who was happy to have me as a customer...for twice as much money. I ended up paying almost $50 a month for service. I was so pissed I nearly filed a complaint with the public utilities commission, but I didn't really have the time to follow through on it.

I have to laugh (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 6 years ago | (#21742540)

Really.

Talk about a wet dream for telephony companies. Getting people to pay for the minutest they use. Getting people to pay for ring tones and the like. Getting people to pay for stuff they can generically access with a simple internet connection and then get them to pay MORE. Better yet, get them to pay for multiple phones for one family.

Worse, there are people who think this has improved their lives. More money tossed out the door. Sorry, but life hasn't changed, people still get by just fine without being available to others 24x7. However marketing people did wonders and suddenly many people not only feel as if they cannot live without a cell phone but they actually feel entitled to them and some go so far as to think others are entitled to them as well... as in that the government should supply those cannot afford them!

Laughable. Keep paying for it guys. I have a pay per minute plan, I normally spend around SEVEN dollars a month at most. Suddenly I am 300 to 500 dollars richer than my friends and I still am in contact with all of them, just in a more sensible method.

Cell infrastructure is weak during emergencies (1)

zstlaw (910185) | more than 6 years ago | (#21743356)

I wonder how long it will be before cellphone infrastructure is no longer overwhelmed every time there is a natural disaster / large accident / local news story.

Right now it is essentially a critical piece of infrastructure that is the first thing to become unavailable in a disaster. And while land lines allow some people's call to get through even when the switch is overwhelmed, a cell tower tends to let no one through when overwhelmed so the backlog of people wanting to get through never gets any better.

Seems like a recipe for disaster to me.

Reading about the recent disasters I noticed in several stories there was no cell coverage available in the wake of the disaster. I wonder how long it will be before additional bandwidth for emergencies will be legislated.
Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?