Study: More Americans giving up landlines for cell phones
THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE Control and Prevention reported Tuesday that 41 percent of U.S. households use only cell phones and have no landline service. Children were more likely to live in a home that was wireless only than adults, the CDC study showed.
COURTESY CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION
WASHINGTON – Two in five American households responding to a survey by the National Center for Health Statistics said they had no landline telephone service and used cell phones as their only means of phone communication, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday.
The National Health Interview Survey, conducted twice annually, showed that 41 percent of American households had only mobile phones during the second half of 2013, an increase of 1.6 percentage points compared with the first half of 2013 and increase of 2.8 percentage points over the second half of 2012.
A family was considered to have landline telephone service if the survey respondent reported there was “at least one phone inside your home that is currently working and is not a cell phone.” The National Center for Health Statistics, which is part of the CDC, surveyed 21,512 U.S. households for the study.
Despite the uptick, however, the CDC said the increases reported for July through December 2013 were less significant than those observed in previous years. For the same six-month period in 2011, the percentage of wireless-only households increased by 4.3 percentage points year over year, and by 4.2 percentage points in 2012.
Children under the age of 18 were more likely to live in a wireless-only household than adults, the study found. While 47.1 percent of children lived in households without landline service in the second half of 2013, 39.1 percent of adults lived in wireless-only homes.
Among households with both landline and wireless telephones, 33.6 percent received all or almost all calls on their cell phones, the CDC said. These “wireless-mostly” households made up 16 percent of all households in the second half of 2013.
Regionally, the Midwest had the highest percentage of wireless-only households, at 43.7 percent, followed by the South at 41.9 percent and the West at 41.2 percent. The Northeast – which includes the six New England states as well as New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania – had the lowest rate of households using cell phones only, at 24.9 percent.