Tech Made Simple

Hot Topics: How to Fix Bluetooth Pairing Problems | Complete Guide to Facebook Privacy | How to Block Spam Calls | Snapchat Symbol Meaning

We may earn commissions when you buy from links on our site. Why you can trust us.

author photo

FCC Votes on Rules to Transition from Copper Landlines to VoIP

by Fox Van Allen on August 07, 2015

Old copper landline phonePersonally, I don’t have a home phone line. My parents do, however. Copper wire landlines are valuable in case of emergency because they carry their own power. Even if my parents lose electricity (as often happens in the woods where they live), they still have a more reliable way to communicate with 911 than their smartphones. After all, mobile 911 networks have been plagued with serious problems (Verizon was recently fined $3.4 million over an April 2014 failure of its mobile 911 service).

This week, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to impose new rules on Verizon and other companies that maintain copper phone lines. Specifically, carriers must now notify you at least 3 months in advance before shutting down a copper network. Carriers also need to seek FCC approval before discontinuing, reducing or impairing service to an area. Replacement services must be offered at comparable prices to copper service, too — your phone company can't charge you more for VoIP just because it phased out your copper network.

“Today’s updates to our copper retirement process … will accelerate and facilitate the transition from copper-based, analog services to more efficient fiber- and IP-based networks and services,” says FCC chair Tom Wheeler. “It is a move from legacy services, to the innovative services of the future.”

In a separate measure, the FCC now requires carriers to provide backup power generators (at your expense) to maintain phone service in the case of prolonged outages. This is important for customers who have been switched over to VoIP (Internet-based) service. VoIP requires power to work, so if your home is dark, you won’t be able to use your home phone to call 911 without some kind of emergency power source.

[Old style telephone via Shutterstock]


Internet Calling, News, Phones and Mobile, Blog

Discussion loading

Home | About | Meet the Team | Contact Us
Media Kit | Newsletter Sponsorships | Licensing & Permissions
Accessibility Statement
Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookie Policy

Techlicious participates in affiliate programs, including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, which provide a small commission from some, but not all, of the "click-thru to buy" links contained in our articles. These click-thru links are determined after the article has been written, based on price and product availability — the commissions do not impact our choice of recommended product, nor the price you pay. When you use these links, you help support our ongoing editorial mission to provide you with the best product recommendations.

© Techlicious LLC.