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Seattle Bubble Forum Archive • View topic - Dump the landline?

Dump the landline?

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Dump the landline?

Postby dls » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:01 pm

This may seem a foolish question to some of you, but, I'm considering dumping my landline phone and just going with my cell phone. I have Verizon for the landline, and Verizonwireless for my cell. VZwireless has greatly improved their service in my area (Edmonds projects) and I doubt I've use my landline more than 1-3 times in the last 6 months. I've also plenty of experience that VZwireless has good coverage in the metro/non-metro (Roger's Pass, MT!) areas if the western US. Are there any reasons to keep the landline (~$33/month) other than habit?
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby Dave0 » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:36 pm

absolutely, dump it. The only reason I have a landline is because one of my roommates doesn't have a cell phone and refuses to get one. I never use my landline. I know plenty of people who don't have a landline and nobody even notices.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby Charles Dean » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:40 pm

No point in having a land line. Dump it. No one keeps them anymore.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby rose-colored-coolaid » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:53 pm

For a single person who already has a cell phone, the only reason to keep a landline is for emergency purposes. Ideally, it would be a phone with a physical cord to the box. Cell phones still work when the power goes down, but if you have a fire or similar emergency the 911 system is still the best way to get help. Only do that if the backup (a phone you can't lose in the couch cushion) is worth $20 a month to you.

If you have a family, it can be more debatable. Does everyone need their own cell phone? Each costs more than a landline (especially one with no long distance service). If you can restrain your family to two less cellphones than residents then keeping the landline might be economical.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby sniglet » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:59 pm

We dumped our land line about 8 years ago and went with Vonage, for IP telephony. By and large it's been great. The calls are dirt cheap, and it makes moving a breaze. Our phone number travels with us wherever we go.

Unfortunately, in the last couple months the voice quality has just gone completely down the tubes and we are wondering if we shouldn't go back to a land line again. I don't know if Vonage is just falling behind on maintenance or if something is happening on Comcasts network that is hurting VOIP, but whatever it is our Vonage service has become attrocious.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby buyStocks » Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:27 am

sniglet,
If you haven't already look into QOS on your router(I'm assuming your using internet etc. on same broadband as your VOIP). I'd suggest using the free Tomato firmware on a cheap router. I heard it works great to prioritize your VOIP over other stuff.
Also, I'm stuck with a voice line for two reasons. One is I need a traditional fax and other is my condo entrance intercom connects to it.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby PublicEnemy#1 » Wed Jan 21, 2009 4:51 am

I dumped my land line about 6 months ago and have no regrets. Have you seen things like this?

http://www.xlinkgateway.com/

http://www.phonelabs.com/prd05.asp

I have been considering getting one of them (haven't yet though, anyone here using one?) and then disconnecting the lines coming from the phone company box and setting one of these up at the phone jack nearest to the best reception point in the house.

Then I can hook up my old rotary phones again and have them ring through when calls come in.

;)

As an aside, I am on a no contract pay as you go plan through Virgin for $25.00 a month so I get the cell for less than what the land line used to cost me.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby Lake Hills Renter » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:48 pm

I dumped my landline a few years ago and haven't looked back snce. I get internet through cable, and use my cell phone for calls. No need for a landline at all.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby explorer » Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:38 pm

It really depends upon your situation. I will not give up my landline: Cheaper, better quality, reliable, and I can check for messages anytime and from anywhere. Not to mention that landlines are far superior to cell phones in emergencies. Cell lines can get overwhelmed very quickly. If you have DSL, you will still need a landline too. Naked DSL is not any better price wise, yet.

I have a cell phone that I use for long distance calls, and when I need it away from home. e.g. travelling, personal business, etc. I have the Virgin Mobile plan that only requires topping off for $20 every three months. Calls are .25 cents per minute for the first 10 minutes, but in two years, I have never even come close to using them up, and they transfer when you top off.

Works for me. Saves me lots of money too.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby lamont » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:23 am

I've got DSL since I run services and don't want to deal with playing games with dynamic DNS with cable modem or fios and dealing with them actively trying to firewall me so i can't do that unless i buy their expensive business-class service.

As a result I've got a $20/mo landline phone. It still comes in useful for when I'm on 10-hour long conference calls to work and to keep those off my cellphone minutes.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby redmondjp » Fri Jan 23, 2009 8:53 pm

OK, here are a couple of reasons why I keep my landline:

1. 911 service knows the address for my home phone number, no doubt about it. If I have a stroke and can't talk, all I have to do is dial 9-1-1 on my home phone, leave it off the hook, and emergency service will respond directly to my address. That is not always the case with other "home" phone services. And a crapshoot with a cell phone at best (who knows which 9-1-1 call center your cell phone call will actually get to first).

2. During a power outage, the ONE means of communication that will continue to work is an ANALOG phone line (not fiber, not DSL, see below). You need to keep at least one corded phone that does not require any AC power to operate--the phone draws all of its power from the phone line. The kind of phone that almost nobody uses anymore (still available at stores for under $20, however, and widely available at your nearest thrift store--if you have a land line, you need one, somewhere in your residence).

All other phone line technologies, fiber, DSL, internet, ALL require AC power at the residence. I have looked into getting FIOS phone (Verizon fiber to the house), but the backup battery they provide with the D-to-A converter that has to be at the house will only operate for a few hours. I was without power for 24 hours during the December 2006 storm here in Redmond (some people up the hill between 132nd Ave NE and 140th Ave NE were without power for an entire WEEK), and my analog phone continued to work, allowing me to communicate with all other members of my family, and that was a great comfort.

Now if you have a giant honkin' UPS or a slew of lead-acid storage batteries at your house along with an AC inverter (I have that as well), you may be able to keep your "hi-tech" phone line up and running for a bit longer than a few hours, but why do this when the telephone central switching station (a block from my house) has a whole basement full of DC batteries, along with a backup power generator, to keep that system operating.

And, if you ever go to fiber for your phone line, the phone company will permanently disable your copper-pair service so you can never go back to it. Why? Because there are federal laws that say that they have to allow other communication companies access to your house over their copper-pair wires. Guess what? NO SUCH laws exist for the fiber! The phone company has got you right where they want you!

Call me a stuck-in-the-past fuddy-duddy if you wish, but the modern communications systems widely in use today do not have the capacity, redundancy, and reliability of the good-ol' Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS), AKA Ma Bell. This is not really obvious until something bad happens like a giant storm, or a virtual storm happens to the internet-based system.
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Re: Dump the landline?

Postby rose-colored-coolaid » Sat Jan 24, 2009 8:28 pm

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