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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

landlines, thing of the past?

I wonder how many people like I don't really find my land line all that useful anymore. I question why I pay $20/month for something I don't really use that much. When you have a cellphone, SIP, Skype, and you can even call on Twitter it seems like it is enough. I was told that even after you cancel your land line 911 service tends to continue to work. Tempting to save that money. Internet connection is invaluable, but a landline and cable TV isn't for the next generation.

It makes me wonder if Google Voice lets you transfer your land line, to a free Google Voice that then transfers the call to Gizmo which the bought, how many land lines will be lost? Cellphone only households are at 18% already.


Eric Hagerstrom said...

911 doesn't work on a disconnected landline. The plain old telephone gets its power from the central office through the local loop. No powered circuit, no dialtone. 911 will always work on a cellphone because the "local loop" is powered by the cellphone itself, not from the "central office"

RalfEriX said...

I had just heard this from LJ, but it seems like there is a mandate in California for it, not your state.

Anonymous said...


That is correct.

When one cancels the line, it's rare for the CO to pull the pair from the punch down. So one will still get dial tone and be able to call the operator and/or 911. However once the pair is pulled, you will no longer have dial tone.

What one needs to do, is request a line from the phone company that only connects to 0, 611, 911. I forget what this is called.


Why would you cancel your land line? How would you get DSL? The dry loops don't have dial tone. As such you wouldn't be able to call 911. Keep the $20.00 a month line.

Have you ever called 911? Have you ever called from a cell vs land line? It's a painful experience calling from a cell phone. I have called from both land and cell, in real emergencies and found the land line experience to be vastly superior.

Feel free to chat with @BrianHumphery ( ) about this if you need further confirmation.

Patrick D. said...

My Father was a Supervisor for Pacific Telephone.

At one point he was responsible to make sure people identified by the appropriate governmental agencies had access to communications when everyone else was prevented from getting a dial tone so the lines would not become overloaded and, thus, were available for Emergency workers to use. As a part of that, he had to verify that the emergency power supplies had been checked so the lines would work when the electrical grid was down. With fiber and cell becoming the norm, I'm not sure there has been any effort to maintain that capability.

Perhaps an official speaker from either A.T.&T. or Verizon or both could be invited to one or more of the meetings we attend.

RalfEriX said...

However if I keep my DSL, 911 will work as I will have the pair, you can now have DSL paired with wireless, rather then a landline.