As we reflected last year:
According to a 2017 U.S. government survey, about 44% of households still own traditional phones, down from 53% three years before—but still much higher than, say, the share of those buying vinyl records, another cultish throwback.
Rotary-dial Mickey still works
For many, the reason is pragmatic. Cell service is spotty in large, rural stretches of the country and even the hills of Los Angeles. Rocky elevation disrupts communication with cell towers, which are also often banned in environmentally protected areas. You can rely on a landline when the power is cut, or during an emergency like a hurricane that causes cell blackouts. And cellphones offer no real escape from harassment and distraction; we’re all being beckoned all the time, everywhere—if not by an actual voice on our cellphones, then by texts, emails, swipes on dating apps.
I'll still keep the AT&T landline. Old-fashioned single-purpose phones still operate on it, and because it has a separate power source the landline may still work when cell, WiFi, and electrical services are out.About 20% of the time the cell-phone calls at home are faint or are filled with static. When we try again on the landline, it's clear as a bell.
If we were pinching pennies, we'd probably cancel the service because $60 per month is expensive insurance. In our current circumstances, however, we'd rather have peace of mind.