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Transcript: Time to give up your land line?

Anchor Intro: According to a recent poll by Harris Interactive, four of five Americans still have a traditional land-line telephone. The others either use a cell exclusively or an Internet phone, known as voice over Internet protocol, or VoIP. Are you ready to cut the cord for good? has some tips to help you decide.

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Voice over 1: It's arguably the most widespread technology the world has ever known: the traditional telephone. But thanks to high prices and newer options, there are those who think its days may be numbered.

Voice over 2: The traditional phone is being threatened by two cord-cutting technologies: The cell phone, now used as one and only phone by 14 percent of American adults.

Voice over 3: And Voice-Over-Internet: routing calls over the Web. Now used by one in seven adults as either a land-line supplement or replacement.

Voice over 4: One word will explain why so many people are answering the Voice over Internet call: cost. Vonage, AT&T and Verizon all offer service for around $25,: roughly half the cost of many traditional land line with the same features.

Voice over 5: And T-Mobile recently lowered the bar by introducing a service for $10 a month. There are catches: You have to be a T-Mobile sSubscriber, sign a two-year contract and pay $50 for a router, but this could mark the first shot in a Voice Over Internet price war.

Voice over 6: Still, before you cut the cord and jump on the Voice-Over-Internet bandwagon, consider the drawbacks of this technology: First, unlike traditional land lines, Voice Over Internet requires electricity. So if your power's out, so's your phone. You've also got to have a broadband connection, and if it's low-quality, your calls will be too.

Standup: Bottom line? While land lines may someday go the way of the buggy whip, today they do have certain advantages. Now whether they're worth the extra money you pay -- that's a call you'll have to make. For, I'm Kristin Arnold.'s corrections policy
-- Posted: Oct. 15, 2008
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