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Drop a Line

Your phone jack just isn't needed anymore.

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This story appears in the June 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

It's a truly nascent trend, but you may already know someone who functions without a traditional phone line. The 1996 Telecommunications Act may have forced the Baby Bells to allow competition, but according to Bruce Kushnick, chairman of consumer group TeleTruth (www.teletruth.org), the Bells still collect an extra $200 per year from each household compared to other telecom companies.

With competition driving telecom prices down for all but Bell land line services, about 1.7 percent of the buying public have dropped land lines for a combination of broadband access and mobile phones, reports Charles Golvin, senior analyst at Forrester Research. By 2006, 5.5 million households will have given up second land lines and 2.3 million will have shut down their primary lines.

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