Latest Podcast



Featured Articles

Ofcom says mobile contracts should ditch inflation-related price rises

Ofcom says mobile contracts should ditch inflation-related price rises

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom wants to ban inflation-related rises in phone and broadband contracts. Instead, it says any potential mid-contract price rises should be set out in pounds and pence.
Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating

Global smartphone market is set for recovery, says new forecast

A new forecast from research specialists Canalys shows the smartphone market is set to recover next year. Worldwide shipments declined by 12% last year but that decline is expected to slow to 5% this year.
Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating
Vodafone and Three plan to merge their UK businesses

Vodafone and Three plan to merge their UK businesses

New Hutchison/Vodafone network would be biggest UK operator

Vodafone Group plc and CK Hutchison Group Telecom Holdings Limited have agreed to combine their UK telecommunication businesses, respectively Vodafone UK and Three UK. The merger will create a large new network operator to compete with Virgin Media O2 and EE.
Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating

UK mobile payment service Paym to close in March 2023

UK mobile payment service Paym will close on 7th March 2023. The service, which allowed users to make and receive payments using their mobile phone numbers, was launched in 2014.
Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating
Qualcomm legal action moves forward in the UK

Qualcomm legal action moves forward in the UK

Which? seeks payout for Samsung and Apple smartphone owners

Consumer protection organisation Which? has been given permission by the UK's Competition Appeal Tribunal to represent Apple and Samsung smartphone buyers in a legal case against chip manufacturer Qualcomm.
Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating
RSS

Opinion Articles

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The landline phone may be fading... but its number still remains

Mark Bridge writes:

In last weekend’s Sunday Times, Ali Hussain asked "Is this the end for the landline phone?"

He pointed out that the average mobile bill almost halved between 2003 and 2008, while landline bills fell by less than a fifth – which has meant the average mobile bill is now lower than the average landline bill. He went on to list fibre-optic broadband, mobile broadband, mobile calls, VoIP calls and satellite phones as alternatives to using fixed-line phones.

If only life were that simple. Yes, there are alternatives to fixed-line phones... but there always have been. And some of the alternatives aren't all that practical.

First of all, mobile data costs haven’t fallen as dramatically as call costs. Sure, they’re on their way down – but out-of-bundle data usage can be painfully expensive. As can sat-phone calls.

Secondly, mobile data speeds still struggle to catch most home broadband services. And having a landline phone also guarantees you 100% coverage for calls, something even a femtocell can't always promise.

But I think the real reason the landline phone isn’t dead yet is trust. Stick a mobile number on the side of your trade van – especially if you use magnetic signage – and many people will label you a fly-by-night. Print a mobile number on your business card without adding a landline and you might as well print it on toilet paper, according to some business people. It's one of the reasons (apart from cost) that non-geographic numbers are unpopular. No landline equates to "no fixed abode".

Much of this trust and mistrust is misplaced, mind you. Skype is one of many telecom companies that’ll sell you a geographical ‘landline’ number without you needing to even set foot in your chosen town. I can have a virtual office in central London – and San Francisco – without getting out of bed. Yet we still trust landlines ahead of mobiles.

Having said all that, most of today’s first-time mobile buyers don’t think of telephone lines as things to trust. Instead they're a barely-necessary utility. And before too long we won’t be dragging numbers around with us, either. We’ll have dot.tel domains or something similar that’ll route calls to our chosen device wherever we are and whatever we're using.

Even at that point, the landline phone won’t reach the end of the line. (Sorry, couldn’t resist it). But it will become invisible. And that’s something the mobile phone companies need to be ready for as well. Meanwhile, the landline has definitely faded - but, like the Cheshire Cat's smile - its number remains.

Reliant Regal van

 

Print
Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Rate this article:
No rating

Categories: OpinionNumber of views: 10338

Tags:

Leave a comment

This form collects your name, email, IP address and content so that we can keep track of the comments placed on the website. For more info check our Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use where you will get more info on where, how and why we store your data.
Add comment

Recent Podcasts

The week's top mobile news stories: Vodafone expands, EE celebrates and Europe prepares

Podcast - 19th March 2014

We begin this week's programme by looking at Vodafone's acquisition plans in Spain before moving on to discuss universal mobile chargers and 4G roaming.

There's also time to talk about UK mobile coverage, EE's new customer tracking service, contactless transactions and a smartphone camera that can identify objects hidden behind something else.

Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating

Johan Lodenius of MediaTek talks about wearable devices, smartphone evolution and the importance of driving costs down

Podcast - 13th March 2014

This year's Mobile World Congress was notable for the number of product launches by handset manufacturers. To get a better understanding of smartphone manufacturing, we spoke to Johan Lodenius of semiconductor company MediaTek.

He gave us a simple overview of how 'fabless' manufacturing works, discussed developments in smartphones and wearable devices, contemplated the end of the PC era and talked about the importance of driving costs down.

Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating

Mobile payments, new smartphones, wearable devices, connected cars, CeBIT and David Cameron

Podcast - 12th March 2014

This week's programme opens with a quick look at David Cameron's commitment to 5G technology and the Internet of Things, which was made in a speech at CeBIT.

Iain and Mark then move on to talk about the other big mobile news headlines from the past few days, including the forthcoming Paym m-payment service, new HTC and LG smartphones, the growth of Chinese handset manufacturers, wearable devices, in-car connectivity and damaged iPhones.

Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating

The rise of OTT messaging and the future of SMS: we talk to Stacy Adams of mBlox

Podcast - 7th March 2014

Messaging was very much on the agenda at Mobile World Congress this year, following Facebook's announcement that it was planning to acquire WhatsApp in a 19 billion dollar deal. So if the future for this type of internet-based 'over the top' messaging service looks good, what does this mean for SMS?

To find out more, we spoke to Stacy Adams of mBlox to learn what was happening in the messaging world, to find out how SMS is being integrated with mobile apps - and to discover some of the other ways SMS was being used by businesses today.

Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating

We talk about 4G LTE coverage and device sensors with OpenSignal at Mobile World Congress

Podcast - 6th March 2014

Even at Mobile World Congress, the relevance of the mobile network operator can sometimes be forgotten. So for a different perspective on this year's event, we spoke to Samuel Johnston from British mobile crowd-sourcing firm OpenSignal.

Samuel discussed the announcements from MWC14 and OpenSignal's latest report into 4G LTE coverage around the world, as well as giving us an exclusive insight into OpenSignal's next research subject.

Author: The Fonecast
0 Comments
Article rating: No rating
RSS
First567810121314Last

Follow thefonecast.com

Twitter @TheFonecast RSS podcast feed
Find us on Facebook Subscribe free via iTunes

Archive Calendar

«July 2024»
MonTueWedThuFriSatSun
24252627282930
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930311234

Archive

Terms Of Use | Privacy Statement