Life on the Wired Side

Brooke Van Allen, Journalist

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If you’ve recently thought about cutting the cord on your landline, you are not the only one. In fact, according to recent U.S Census Bureau data, just over one third of households no longer use home phones. Various families claim they’re simply a waste of money, and that they’ve been completely replaced by mobile phones. On the other hand, there is much information to support a steady need for them.

“Elders need them for safety reasons, as they can’t figure out how to work a mobile phone,” explains homeowner Lisa Van Allen. She goes on to point out how she feels comfortable that her parents have their landline to call her with if they’re ever in a dangerous situation. Of course, as generations of those “technologically behind” begin to fade out, and more advanced generations grow up, this need for home phones will be completely inapplicable. Aside from senior citizens, why should a family such as my own not cut the cord?

Many will answer this question by relating back to the scenario of an emergency. 911 calls. When you dial 911 from a landline, the dispatcher can generally see your address right away. The same can’t always be said for cell phones, and how many seconds can you really afford to lose if you’re in a dire situation? Dispatchers claim that there is always a bit of “fuzziness” on location from a mobile call, and it can take up to an extra 30 seconds to receive information on your location from a cell tower. For some, this is simply a risk they don’t see a reason to take.

Among the one third of people whose families have decided to rely solely on their iPhones for communication, is Casey Ciemniewski from Burlington.

“Why do you need a home phone when you can reach in your pocket for one? Every time our landline rang it was a toll free call or solicitor, we just didn’t see a reason to keep it,” said Casey. Casey and his family even have the same line of thought as 25% of businesses today that are rapidly phasing out desk phones. Having a landline is becoming more and more obsolete with every iPhone update. Cutting the cord is just another seemingly clear way to save money.

Although there are many benefits to continuing to live life on the wired side, don’t overlook the possible profits of going mobile. In this day and age, cell phones have almost completely taken over. If you feel like your phone line is tying you down, it might be time to ditch the landline. Whether or not you want to jump on the mobile bandwagon is up to you, hopefully reading this article will help you to make the best choice.

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