AT&T, Verizon Will Replace Landlines with Fiber Optics

Traditional landlines in California are ceasing operation, waiver that AT&T applied for Verizon & stated they're working on copper wire.

Traditional landlines in California are ceasing operations due to the waiver that AT&T applied for Verizon and AT&T have previously stated they are working on new infrastructure for copper wire in the coming years.

People currently using landlines need to hang up the call and move on, as the services are going to be discontinued.

Part of the process undertaken by the service providers involves removing the old copper wire-based system lines, known as Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS). This includes transitioning to more advanced and swifter technology, which, however, does not support the concept of landlines.

A significant shift by providers towards fiber optics is occurring, along with ethernet access and the withdrawal of old equipment, mainly copper wires. Recently, this process has begun in France and the UK.

Consumers are faced with a decision: they must decide whether to give up owning a landline or face the consequences of higher costs in their bills. The alternatives might not be as dependable as traditional landlines, and replacing the outdated equipment with new technology could be a significant task.

“We’ve seen a precipitous decline in demand for telephone services provided over our copper networks,” an AT&T spokesperson mentioned to CNN. “We are focused on enhancing our network with more advanced, higher speed technologies like fiber and wireless, which consumers are demanding.”

What Happened to Landlines?

AT&T spokesperson stated that “not canceling landline service in California” and reassurance was made that no customer will lose access to voice service regardless of having the waiver accepted by the California Public Utilities Commission.

It is recommended that US service providers offer alternatives for customers who still use landlines, to either convert to digital or analog signals, or switch to fiber optic or wireless technology, such as LTE or 5G.

People over 65 and small business owners in the US will likely be impacted by the move away from copper landlines.

“The impact is pretty wide – certainly seniors or people living in areas where reliable power is a problem … so areas prone to hurricanes have a higher incidence of analog service than, say, Pennsylvania,” stated Lisa Pierce, which is the research vice president at the market research firm Gartner.

The change may also have a greater effect in some areas than others. In a statement to CNN, Patrick Blacklock, the president, and CEO of the Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC), expressed “serious concerns” about AT&T’s application and requested that the California Public Utilities Commission reject it.

“Traditional landline telephone service is the most dependable communications tool currently available in rural communities and is vital to reliably accessing 9-1-1,” he said. “It is essential to retain affordable, safety net services especially in disaster-prone areas with fewer market options and comparable service quality that copper-based landline phone service provides.”

Over the years, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has allowed phone companies to decrease charges for people who choose to switch to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) systems. This supports the idea of integrating voice with multiple other internet-based services.

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