According to new figures released by a US government agency, more households in the country use mobile-only phones than landlines.
Although it’s a relatively small survey, and conducted by a department other than the ones directly involved in telecommunications, it indicates what looks to be an irreversible trend.
More people are choosing not to have a “home phone” in the traditional sense – one that is fixed to the address they live at. Instead, they are opting to have only mobile phones.
The findings was part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Health Interview Survey, and questioned 19,956 households – and it does have a margin of 1 percentage point.
But it may be somewhat surprising nonetheless to find that 50.8 per cent of houses and apartments in the US, according to the survey, now have only mobile phones.
Only 45.9 per cent were found to have landlines, with the a small number having neither.
Stephen Blumberg, the study’s co-author, says the survey was done to find out correlations between the type of phone service a person uses and their lifestyle, including whether or not they have health insurance.
“Wireless-only adults are more likely to drink heavily, more likely to smoke and be uninsured,” he said, adding: “There certainly is something about giving up a landline that appeals to the same people who may engage in risky behavior.’’
Other stats of interest found by the survey include an indicator that the younger you are, the less likely it is that you have a landline.
More than 70 per cent of adults aged between 25 and 34 live in households with wireless-only service, according to the survey.
This is a higher percentage than found in the 18-24 age category, but that may be explained by the higher proportion of younger people living with parents and other family members.