Monday, September 03, 2007

Measuring trends: cells and landlines

picture of snowman
Originally uploaded by glowingstar
From September 2006 to April 2007, the percentage of Americans in cellphone-only households for the first time overtook the percentage in landline-only households, according to Mediamark Research, a firm that has been tracking such data since the mid-1980s.

The milestone is a natural consequence of two trends: a glacially slow decline since 2000 in the percentage of households with landlines, and a steep rise in the number of households with cellphones. Mediamark said 84.5 percent of households now have landlines, and 86.2 percent have at least one cellphone. The data was collected through in-home surveys at roughly 13,000 homes across the country.

Andy Arthur, the study’s author and an analyst with Mediamark, said the number of households with landlines would probably continue to decrease. “But there’s an older group,” he added, “that will never give up landlines, and will never accept the new technology.”

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