Your landline might not be there for you when the power goes out
December 05, 2018
More than 40 percent of Americans still have a landline, at least according to a 2017 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People keep them for convenience, reliability and emergencies so they can still make calls if the power goes out due to an earthquake, fire or other disaster. But only about 20 percent of households have good old copper phone lines, according to the trade group USTelecom. The rest are digital connections or voice over internet protocol. AT&T has been pushing for almost a decade to drop analog landline service and move to an all-digital network for landlines. Telecom companies say it's a lot cheaper to operate just one network. But are IP phone lines as reliable as the old tech? Molly Wood talks with Joan Engebretson, executive editor at Telecompetitor, an industry publication focused on broadband and telecom.