The CDC’s report on wireless substitution – aka canceling your land line for a cellphone – is out and we discover that one in five U.S. households have cut the cable, an increase of 2.7 percent over six months ago. Another tidbit: one in every seven American homes (14.5%) took all their calls on cellphones despite having a landline.
The report polled 12,597 families for 23,726 adults total – there were 8,635 kids under the age of 18 – which makes it a fairly strong sample size. A few other tidbits:
* More than three in five adults living only with unrelated adult roommates (60.6%) were in households with only wireless telephones. This is the highest prevalence rate among the population subgroups examined.
* Nearly two in five adults renting their home (39.2%) had only wireless telephones. Adults renting their home were more likely than adults owning their home (9.9%) to be living in households with only wireless telephones.
* Men (20.0%) were more likely than women (17.0%) to be living in households with only wireless telephones.
* Adults living in poverty (30.9%) and adults living near poverty (23.8%) were more likely than higher income adults (16.0%) to be living in households with only wireless telephones.
It’s interesting to note that these groups self-select along income and gender lines. I know plenty of folks – mostly my older neighbors – who had a land line “just in case” but switched during the New York blackout of 2003 because those “just in case” phones died.
I suspect these numbers will only rise in the next few years. An entire cohort of college kids are landing in their own apartments – college kids who probably haven’t used a land line for most of their lives. Also, why is the CDC tracking this? By figuring out how many kids have been using cellphones since they were in the womb we’ll know if all the brain cancer we’ll all get in about ten years was caused by our Motorola RAZRs and iPhones.
Do you still have a landline?