Household landline phones are the next dying piece of technology, according to current trends.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been surveying phone ownership since 2004, as part of one of its health studies. The CDC’s figures show that US households have gone from 90% landline usage a decade ago to landline-only and cell phone-only households now at parity with each other. At the current rate, cell phone-only households should eclipse homes with landlines sometime this year.
Statistics site Statista has created this infographic charting the data:
Creative Commons infographic by Statista (CC BY-ND)
I haven’t had a landline phone in four or five years. It didn’t make sense to pay for two phones when I receive few phone calls. Of course, I get heavy usage out of my smartphone as a data device.
As for landline phones’ future, they’ll remain a staple in offices everywhere. For now, they’re more convenient and cheaper than supplying office desks with smartphones. Cable companies also now offer VOIP phone service as part of “triple play” packages (along with cable TV and broadband). This has had some success.