landline is indeed the top choice for quality among Home Phone
and for what it costs, it should be. A wired connection between you and
the phone company gets you one of the most reliable communications
connections available in the world. The phone companies have
had over a hundred years to get it right. Our number one
point for the landline is the excellent audio quality.
True, it's not HD, but compared to the other Home Phone
alternatives it's truly easy on the ears.
The landline (and it's almost-as-good cable telephone connection) is
regulated by the federal government which requires a certain level of
quality and reliability. These connections also suffer from
an unfair excise tax that drives the price much higher than it needs to
be. Some costs, like 911 support, are justifiable, but too
many governments use phone lines as a source of tax revenue.
Landlines also offer both regulated and unregulated services.
As a result, some calling features like Caller ID, which are
unregulated, are used to
make more profit for the phone company. These features are
offered by most alternative Home Phone services for FREE!
If you already have a landline, think carefully about taking it out in
favor of a cheaper alternative. Don't cut the cord just
because you don't like the phone company. First, look for
ways to cut your Landline cost.
► How to Lower Costs with a Landline
Landline Pros & Cons
Costs with a Landline Home Phone:
Discounts are available when you tie in your Internet, phone and/or
video services together. The savings can range from
significant to none.
might be stuck in a bundle with a charge for your Home Phone service
that has crept up without you knowing it. Ask about splitting
your services to see if you can save by paying for them a la carte, or
by replacing one or more of your other bundled service.
From time to time, phone and cable companies offer a deal that could
apply to any one service or, more likely, a bundle. These can be "For
Life", for 1 or 2 years, or may require a contract.
- SPECIAL USERS:
You may qualify for a discount based on being a Senior, having
low income or other specific circumstances.
regulated phone companies must provide a "basic" phone service for a
state-mandated cost, which can be quite reasonable. Basic
means no Calling Features, a limited number of calls, or, in some
cases, no access to Long Distance.
- EMERGENCY CALLS
Calls to 911 are routed to the nearest emergency dispatch
center and most likely they will know your location automatically.
Because the phone has a 'dial tone', you'll know when the line has been
cut by zombies.
- MOST PLUG-IN
DEVICES WILL WORK
wired landline is normally compatible with devices
that exchange data including fax machines, alarm systems, credit
card machines, satellite modems, medical alert systems, and even dialup
- CALLER ID
Incoming Caller ID on a wired line normally displays as much ID
information as is available. Outgoing Caller ID is more
detailed than most services.
- POWER OUTAGES
During a power outage your landline will continue to work. If
your home phone unit plugs into an electrical outlet you may lose phone
service unless it has a battery backup. It's always good to
have a simple wired phone for use in power outages.
phone lines have been required to provide as close to 100% reliability
Since all the necessary equipment is maintained at the phone
company's central office there's nothing to break at your end of the
- PREDICTABLE CALL
When you enter your number and make a call, there are few surprises.
The call goes through subject to the status of the line at
the other end.
If you have an emergency you aren't dependent on a cell phone battery.
If you have
visitors or a baby sitter, they will have access to emergency services
who will know the location of the emergency.
HAVE A "HOUSE" PHONE FOR THE FAMILY
No need to carry your cell phone in your pocket at home. You get a
'dial tone,' which may be a big deal for older relatives or visitors
using the phone in their home or yours.
phone company usually needs more knowledgeable customer service
personnel, but there is no guarantee those people sit in the US or
speak understandable English. You are permitted by law to ask
a stateside customer service representative.
- LANDLINES CAN BE EXPENSIVE
per-month expense can be significant with a landline. While
basic service can be relatively economical, there's no limit to the
price the phone company can charge for extra features, and how many
fees government can add. Choose a single
feature like Caller ID and it could boost your phone bill as much as
- LANDLINES AREN'T PORTABLE
You are limited to using your phone line in one location.
- INSTALLATION REQUIRES HELP
Unlike other Home Phone alternatives, the Landline may need to be set
up including a visit from a technician. There are
normally significant charges to activate a landline whether or not
somebody visits your premises.
- CALLING FEATURES AND LONG
DISTANCE CONNECTIONS ARE CHARGED EXTRA
Some phone companies offer bundles that include features and long
distance charges but don't expect the ones you want to be included
without extra charges.