Majority of US Homes Cell Phone Only

cell phone only householdsThe majority of U.S. homes are now cell phone only households – with no land-line phone. As the popularity of smartphones soars, land-line phones are starting to disappear. A ccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics, 50.8 percent of American homes did not have a landline telephone but did have at least one cell phone. Just 10 years ago, only about 15 percent of households were wireless only. Of the remaining households, 39.4 percent had both a wireless phone and a landline. Only 6.5 percent were landline only, while 3.2 percent were phone-free. With one exception, the data shows the younger the age group, the more likely they’re living in cell phone only households without a land-line phone:

  • 61.7 percent of 18 to 24-year-olds were without a landline
  • More than 7 in 10 adults aged 25–29 (72.7 percent) had only a cell phone
  • 71 percent of adults between 30 to 34 years-old were wireless only
  • 62.5 percent of  35-44 year-olds were without a landline
  • 45.2 percent of 45-64 year-olds live in cell phone only households
  • Only 23.5 percent of those 65 or older were wireless only
The CDC report notes that income level defintely a deciding factor when it comes to giving up the landline. Adults living in poverty (66.3 percent) and near poverty (59.0 percent) were more likely than higher income adults (48.5 percent) to be living in households with only cell phones.
Geography also plays a role in the decision-making process.
  • Adults living in the Northeast were more likely to be cellphone only than those living in the Midwest (53 percent), South (55.5 percent), and West (53.4 percent).
  • Adults living in metropolitan areas (53 percent) were more likely than those living in non-metropolitan areas (47 percent) to be living in wireless-only households.
While the increase in cellphone only households has slowed a bit in recent years, by the end of the decade, land-line phones may very well become an endangered species.

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