2015 Cell Phones vs. Landlines in Central PA Households

2015 Cell Phones vs. Landlines in Central PA Households
October 2015
Category: Business

Do you remember the days before cell phones? When you made phone calls from landlines or the almost now non-existent pay phones? Or even the days when cell phones first hit the market and they were giant, 5 pound blocks or in bags the size of brief cases? How about the days when a phone was used for making phone calls only, computers were used for internet and email, cameras were used to take pictures, etc.? These days existed not that long ago, and let's ask ourselves - did we ever really think that cell phones and technology would really come as far as they have now? Now we can use our phones for just about anything we want, anywhere we want to. We can FaceTime a friend, while sending text messages to others, while ordering a pizza, while activating our home security systems and starting our cars, while taking a selfie, and tweeting about it all at the same time. 
The world of cell phones and other mobile devices has grown tremendously over the last several years. Why is this important? Well, if you are a business and you have not implemented a mobile marketing strategy yet, you need to get to it. In 2013, we faced a paradigm shift where more people accessed the internet via a mobile device than on a desktop or a laptop computer. 2015 has been another major year of change in that this is the year when the Millennial generation (also known as the most "Techy" generation) has now become the largest demographic set in the workforce. With these shifts and changes, naturally the advancement and integration of technology is going to continue to grow more and more.
But, what does this landscape look like for Central Pennsylvania? We've gathered some facts and stats comparing cell phones and landline telephones for the region. See below.
cell phones versus landlines
Looking at the data based on households in the region, 93.7% have at least one cell phone (that is roughly 854,000 households in Central Pennsylvania) versus 62.5% of households that have landlines (approximately 570,000). Of the total Central Pennsylvania households, 37.2% have a cell phone ONLY with no landline versus 5.9% that have a landline ONLY with no cell phone.
Judging by this information alone, we can conclude that the cell phone market has definitely outpaced that of the landline phone market in the region. However, if we take it one step further and compare purchasing habits of consumers over the past 12 months, this conclusion becomes a little more clear. In the past year, 73.4% of households in Central Pennsylvania purchased at least one cell phone. That is just about 669,000 households! Compared to the 4.4% of households that purchased a cordless landline phone in the same time period, these numbers are much more significant.

The graphs above show some comparisons of cell phones versus landlines based on Central Pennsylvania households. Graph A is the comparison of total cell phone and landline ownership in the region. Graph B displays the comparison of households that have a cell phone ONLY versus those that have landlines ONLY. Graph C is the comparison of household purchases of cell phones and cordless landline phones in the past 12 months.

use of landlines over time (2008 - 2014)
In 2008, approximately 84% of households in Central Pennsylvania had a landline. From 2008 to 2011, this percentage decreased to 74% and has since then continued to drop to 62.5%. The graph below shows a comparison of households in each of the nine Central Pennsylvania counties who had landlines in 2008 (blue bars), 2011 (red bars), and 2014 (green bars).

additional facts and info on central pennsylvania's cell phone market
  • 98.2% of households that own cell phones, have at least one smartphone
  • 31.7% of households have one cell phone, 37.2% have two cell phones, and 24.8% have three or more cell phones.
  • Only 6.9% of households do not own a cell phone at all
  • 44.2% of households in the region have an average monthly cell phone bill of $100 or more. Approximately 31.8% pay between $50-$99 per month, while 24.0% pay up to $49 per month. 

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