More and more of the region's residents are ditching landline phones

NO USAGE: Telstra shop workers Jordan Stewart and Jacie Cockburn with a landline phone, which is less and less being used by residents.

NO USAGE: Telstra shop workers Jordan Stewart and Jacie Cockburn with a landline phone, which is less and less being used by residents.

FOR JENNIFER Welsh, who moved to Wagga late last year, connecting a landline phone was the least of her worries.

The 39-year-old designer is constantly on the move and relies on her mobile phone to keep in touch with her colleagues and relatives. 

While she had a home phone installed as part of her internet plan – she doesn’t even know her own contact number.

“I’ve probably used it about three times since it was put in,” she said.

Her attitude towards the traditional landline represents a growing divide between older and younger Australians who are more and more abandoning the home phone. 

“It’s really just an added expense that we don’t need,” she added.

A report released in October has suggested that just one third of regional Australians – in areas like Wagga – still use a landline for telephone calls. 

It was revealed that up to 54 per cent still own a home phone – but many many of those go unused. 

A spokesperson for Telstra – the dominant service provider in the Riverina – maintains that landlines will be required as long as there are areas without reception. 

“I think that is an indication that with the vast mass of Australia we are never going to get full mobile coverage,” Telstra southern area manager Chris Taylor said.

“There is always going to be a need for landline use.”

A sign that Australians are increasingly using mobile phones for communication, the telco in recent years beefed up its data network to cope with increased mobile demand.

In Wagga, the network was “supercharged” with 4G capability because usage has doubled since data was first rolled out.

Mr Taylor said the landline network would be maintained into the future, with multiple technologies still feeding off the copper wires.

“We see the landline as complementing other technologies such as broadband. A lot of people will access Wi-Fi off the landline network,” he said.

Wagga resident Jennifer Shaw said on Facebook that landlines gave telemarketers an avenue to harass her and her family. 

“There’s not really a need for them anymore,” he said.

“When I had mine our family were just annoyed by telemarketers.”

It coincides with the closure of the 2G network nation-wide.

It’s really just an added expense that we don’t need. - Jennifer Welsh

It goes offline December 1.

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