Landline phone use halves as mobile data use jumps tenfold :
The popularity of messaging apps and the dominance of the smartphone mean the landline is being used less and less.
British phone users are ditching dialogue for data, according to a survey by Ofcom.
Its research shows that landline telephone use has halved, while mobile data use has increased tenfold in the past six years.
Smartphones, broadband, social media, and nuisance calls have all contributed to the demise of the landline.
The survey confirms that younger people prefer to use messaging services, such as WhatsApp and Snapchat, rather than use their phones to talk.
Basil Kronfli, a phone expert for website TechRadar, told Sky News: “It’s becoming less and less important to have a physical presence for your phone.
“If you’re a business it makes sense, it verifies you as a trusted business – but for the individual, a smartphone can do everything a landline can and much much more.”
Ofcom – the broadcasting and telecoms watchdog – also says the research shows an age divide through differing attitudes to landline dialing codes.
Many younger people are either unaware or don’t care that the codes identify the geographic location of the caller.
Older people are more likely to recognize, and trust, the codes local to them.
Liz Greenberg, head of numbering at Ofcom, said: “Some of us can remember a time when we stored phone numbers in our head, rather than our mobile. But the way we use and feel about telephone numbers is changing.
“In the future, as more calls are made over broadband, dialing codes won’t need to be fixed to a particular part of the country. So the question is – could area codes become a thing of the past?”
Ofcom says they are investigating how landline numbers can be better managed, particularly for business use.