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Landline prices increase as usage falls


The cost of having a landline telephone is significantly increasing, as more homes turn to other forms of communication and disregard the landline.
The UKs three biggest landline providers, Sky, BT and TalkTalk are introducing price increases from early December, by up to five times the rate of inflation.

Latest figures from Ofcom show that consumers spent three billion minutes fewer on their landlines in the year to June 2014, a reduction of 12.7% in one year alone. As a result, operators lost out on £85m of revenue compared with the previous year.

Experts believe people are steadily increasing their mobile use and also predominantly using social media, Skype and other services to speak to loved ones or business contacts.

James Barford of Enders Analysis told the BBC:

"Call volumes are declining. People are using Facebook or WhatsApp, or even email if they're a little old-fashioned, so operators are having to recover their costs from increased line rental."

BT, the UKs largest operator, has argued that the rise was only a result of their regular annual price review, not because of falling usage. A BT spokesman said:

"Whilst call volumes are going down, the number of landlines is going up."

The number of landlines in homes has risen, according to Ofcom, but the number of business lines has fallen dramatically. People are spending longer on their mobiles, with the total number of minutes increasing by 2.3% in the past year.

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