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Telephone landlines in Florida down 14 percent since 2014

Posted at 7:04 AM, Aug 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-08 09:33:08-04

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- There are fewer and fewer people using telephone landlines in Florida, with state figures showing a 14 percent drop since 2014.

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The Public Service Commission says there were about 3.3 million wired phone lines in Florida at the end of 2015. And looking back to 2004, the Orlando Sentinel reports there were 11.8 million telephone landlines in Florida.

Customers say they ditch landlines for multiple reasons, including cost savings, the rise of quality smartphones and simply having busy lives.

Landline advocates say they make 911 calls go smoothly, as emergency agencies can track a phone's exact location. They are also invaluable during a widespread power outage, when charging a cellphone might become impossible.

The shift appears largely generational, with older customers keeping landlines and younger ones cutting the cord.