We had a big response when we asked if you still use your landline. It turns out that many of you would be lost without yours – even some who’d rather use a mobile.
John Ward is among those who uses a landline not his mobile when he needs to make calls and is happy to otherwise rely on other, slower ways to communicate:
‘Nearly all the calls I make are by landline, but the total number is quite low. I have a mobile phone but it’s usually in a jacket pocket somewhere and it’s for the occasional communication when out and about – usually by text. I still send handwritten and typed letters. Very few communications in my life are urgent I am pleased to say.’
Can’t get a signal
But lots of people do like to be able to make contact in a hurry, which is why poor coverage can be such a disadvantage for mobile phone users.
Alan explained it’s not just a problem in very rural areas:
‘Those of us living in the countryside (less than four miles outside of a town) have to suffer the problems of totally rubbish broadband speeds and also virtually nil mobile phone (unless you want to hang out of the window waving your mobile around). So for millions of us the landline is invaluable and will be for a long time yet as the telecoms industry is only interested in urban areas.’
Power cuts make a landline essential for Rosalind Nelson:
‘I live in a rural area with overhead phone and electricity lines. We get constant power cuts because of lack of investment by the power company so when it goes off our cordless phone doesn’t work so we have a corded one, too. We both have mobiles but the coverage in our area is iffy to say the least, so we’d never get rid of our landline. If we had no landline and couldn’t get a signal with our mobile, we’d be left with nowhere to go as we also have no neighbours and are miles from the village.’
Mobiles aren’t always user-friendly
Mobiles can be handy, but Ann Brown doesn’t find them as easy to use as a trusty landline phone:
‘I find the corded landline more comfortable to hold; mobiles and cordless phones tend to slip up the side of my head and I can’t hear properly. To explain, I am 85!’
David Seale has tried to get used to mobiles a number of times:
‘I’ve tried and tried. I can switch it on after three or four attempts. It can take me about ten minutes to make a call on a mobile. I now just keep one in the car for emergencies.’
Quality is key
Some of you simply find it’s nicer making a call on the landline, including JC:
‘Sometimes the mobile signal is so bad, I have to call back on the landline.’
Richjenn14 finds mobile phone calls too unreliable:
‘For those of us who want to make reliable calls, mobile is a constant nuisance, and the signal seems to be getting worse rather than better.’
How often do you use your landline?
It’s clear that many of you still use a landline – as is shown by the results of our poll. Of the 2,350 people who voted, 40% said they used their landline at least once a day, while 33% used it a few times a week. Just 6% of people rarely use their landline and only 2% don’t even have one.
Not everyone needs a landline
A few of you did feel you could happily get by without a landline, such as Wimbledon:
‘I have a landline for broadband internet. Otherwise no use for it. Mobile package has plenty of minutes and data included. Phone is on you all the time and no need to remember any numbers. Annoying how line rental keeps on climbing.’
Peter Fisher explained he doesn’t need to use a mobile:
‘Most of my calls are over Facebook messenger or Skype… I pay £30 a year and calls to UK landlines over Skype cost no more. I also use mobile Voip, add some money and calls to UK landlines are free. Landlines are expensive for calls, as are mobile phones. It would be good if one could have a data connection only, no calls. Facebook calls are the easiest. Just press a blue phone in the app!’
Are you living landline-free, or is your local mobile signal too shaky to depend on?