There’s a lot of things we’ve lost as part of new and improved technology, one of which is the novelty telephone. Sure, lots of people still have home phones, but even among them, increasing numbers of people are cutting their phone company loose in favor of internet-based VoIP phone services. Not thinking much of it, I brought my son a burger phone, you know, like the one the Belcher’s have in their apartment on Bob’s Burgers? Or maybe you’re more of a Juno person? It was silly and cheap, so WTF, right? Well, we are in that group of people who still have a home phone, but have long been customers of Ooma, one of the many aforementioned VoIP services. Plugging in the novelty burger phone, I quickly realized that Ooma’s VoIP service doesn’t quite work the same way as traditional service over copper, so the dumb burger phone was a no-go as it needed that traditional landline dial tone to function. One disappointed kid meltdown later, we had to look up videos on how phone lines work, so that was super fun.
Yesterday I called up my local cable company in hopes of setting up a landline. Not that I really need one or anything. People can reach me just fine on cell, but I like the idea of only being reachable while at home. Just like in the olden days. We’ve gotta do what we can to loosen society’s grip over our hyper-connected, over-stimulated lives. But apparently my cable provider isn’t offering that anymore?!?
A study published in May by the Center for Disease Control (of all people!) found that for the first time in American history, the majority of households are cellphone-only (50.8%). This statistic was compared to the feeble 6.5% population of strictly-landline users, with the remaining being a mix of the two (or even neither). Well, that’s truly a bummer, because I had the perfect ‘analog rig’ already picked out… read more >