9 reasons people keep their landline

Tori Nonnet profile image September 29, 2023 | 4 min read

On the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, there’s a popular account called, “Why you should have a cat” (handle: @ShouldHaveCat). With more than three million followers, the page keeps visitors engaged with endearing and unusual photos, GIFs and videos, showing the many sides of feline friskiness and human interaction. Not everybody has a cat, or thinks they want one. But this account could change your mind.

The same “think twice” perspective applies to telephone landlines. Sure, our smartphones keep us connected 24/7, and entertained if we’re sitting at a red light for 30 seconds and can’t bear the boredom. We learn the latest celebrity news almost faster than a star’s family or friends do. Yet it’s all a bit exhausting, no?

Landlines to the rescue!

Once upon a time, when you wanted to speak with another person and doing so face to face wasn’t feasible, you called a landline phone. If they weren’t home (or were indisposed, or just didn’t feel like talking on the phone right then), there was usually an answering machine that clicked on and requested you leave a message. Then, when your friend/relative/former college professor came home, they’d see the blinking light and feel a tingle of anticipation: Someone called!

It’s akin to receiving a snail mail letter, another rarity these days.

So let’s assume we’ve piqued your curiosity. There are more than a few good reasons to keep a landline‚ or even to install one again if you disconnected the one you used to have.

(By the way, when we say “landline,” we’re not suggesting you go whole hog analog—unless, of course, you relish a trip down memory lane and are a fan of outrageous phone bills. “Landline” in this case is somewhat vestigial, like a human tail or wisdom teeth: in lieu of copper wires, today’s home phone lines use VoIP technology, piggybacking on your internet service.)

Landed: 9 top reasons to have a landline

More than 500 members of Ooma Nation, a special group for our customers, who love their landlines shared exactly why a landline phone is quite the good idea. Here are some of our favorite responses:

  • It is apparent every time I use my home phone, how relaxing and pleasant a conversation can be, compared to the glass/plastic smartphone slab pressed to my face. Just had an hour-long chat with my brother over the weekend, and an ear-coupled device with handle makes the experience of conversation so enjoyable—I would forget that if not for my home phone. And the call quality is crisp, bright, loud and free from static or interference so that one might think the other person is right next door. I am really pleased with the performance and value this service offers; I never have to even think about the technology behind it, though if I do, it is quite impressive. ~ Pete
  • My son was hospitalized and literally the only number he had memorized was our house phone. SO glad we have it! ~ Jesmelric
  • I’m a 911 dispatcher and I know firsthand the importance of 911 being able to see your physical address location when you call. If you can’t speak, they can still find you! ~ PurpleInk
  • My son tried to get me on my cell, which I turn down at night. He couldn’t. But he got me on my Ooma phone, which is always on. ~ Jane
  • I live abroad and move yearly, but with Ooma I am able to maintain a regular, long-term phone number for official purposes. I can follow up with my bank, the government, etc., and easily be reachable regardless of the country where I am. ~ Anna
  • This is the number we usually give out to businesses (i.e., dentist) or for contests. This practice results in fewer spam calls to our cell phones, which do not have spam blockers. ~ Mark S.
  • There are times I just don’t want people calling our cell. The home number is a place for those calls that are not urgent or are for both my wife and I. And if they go to voicemail, it’s not urgent. It gives our cell phones a rest. ~ Owen R.
  • My elderly parents memorized my phone number 30 or 40 years ago. It was no problem then. Today it would be impossible. I want to be available any time they need help, which is becoming more and more frequent. They can dial my number from memory any time they need me. Learning a new one would be almost impossible. ~ Cathey W.

And speaking of cats, anyone who lives with one knows they have a somewhat invasive habit of accompanying their human to the bathroom. Yet isn’t a cell phone even more intrusive? How many times have you been in a public restroom when someone else is in there talking—on their cell phone? While engaged in a very private activity. Totally tacky.

An Ooma Nation member agrees:

  • The worry of carrying your phone everywhere, even washroom isn’t worth it (sic). Mobiles are a fad. People will return to landlines in hoards & Ooma will be there. ~ Alex

While we don’t imagine cell phones will disappear any time soon, we certainly appreciate Alex’s perspective and props!

So hang on to that landline. Having an emergency phone for kids too young to have a cell phone, or for elders who have your home phone memorized but can’t learn a bunch of new numbers, or to have one handy number to give employers, or for filling out forms … for all these reasons and a whole lot more, landlines remain a good investment.

A landline may not be as cute and cuddly as a kitten, but it is far more dependable. And it will never follow you into the restroom, or talk to you in one.