POTS-only households drop to 8 percent as millennials opt for wireless, CDC says

While landline voice service has been the bedrock of the communications industry for over 100 years, new statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed that only about 8 percent of homes have a landline-based voice service.

The CDC said that 47 percent of homes use wireless phones as their only voice line and don't purchase a traditional voice service, or plain old telephone service (POTS) from a local telco.

What this shows is more households are dropping POTS in favor of a wireless voice service -- a trend that continues to be reflected in the quarterly reports of the major telcos like AT&T (NYSE: T), CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ).

In 2014, the amount of wireless-only households rose sharply and the CDC expects that they could make up the majority late this year or early next year. Over the past three years, wireless-only households have grown nearly 12 percent.  

Perhaps not surprisingly, the age of residents has a correlation on wireless-only use. Among households that had individuals aged 24-34 present, 68 percent to 71 percent use only wireless services.

At the same time, 3.4 percent of homes have no landline service at all. CDC said that many residents living at or near the poverty level lived in a home where the cell phone was the only phone.

Nearly 85 percent of adults that lived with nonerelated roommates lived in a house where cell phones were the only voice service. Finally, residents that rented an apartment or a home were more likely than a homeowner to use only a wireless phone.

CDC wireless substitution survey

For more:
- The Hill has this article
- see the CDC report (PDF)

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