Landline phones continue to disappear as consumers in Florida opt for a variety of competitive services, according to the Florida Public Service Commission’s (PSC) annual Report on the Status of Competition in the Telecommunications Industry.
“Affordability and service reliability are essential in a competitive market, and Florida consumers have found both in the services they’re choosing,” said PSC Chairman Gary Clark. “Consumers continue to benefit as technology evolves, and telecommunications companies are gearing up for some big technological advancements, enhancing the customer experience and propelling Florida’s economic growth.”
The 2020 report shows consumers continue to move from landline telephone service to wireless and cable/Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services. The data also indicates that residential migration to wireless technologies continues, while business customers are still migrating to VoIP services in large numbers. Carriers reported approximately 1.6 million total wireline access lines in Florida for 2019, about 15.7 percent fewer than in 2018.
For the ninth year in a row, the total number of business landlines exceeded residential landlines, although both experienced significant drops in 2019. Residential landlines declined 12.6 percent, while business landlines declined 17.5 percent.
In Florida, AT&T surpassed CenturyLink as Florida’s largest wireline residential access line provider. CenturyLink experienced a 20.4 percent decline in residential lines during 2019, while AT&T only declined 4.6 percent. Frontier also experienced the biggest residential loss with a 23.6 percent decline in residential access lines during the same period.
As in past years, wireless, VoIP and broadband drove the telecommunications markets in 2019. According to the most recent Federal Communications Commission (FCC) data, there are an estimated 21.8 million wireless subscriptions in Florida and more than 4.5 million VoIP connections. The FCC also reported a 71 percent subscription rate of 25Mbps or greater fixed broadband connections in Florida in 2017. Cable modem services accounted for roughly 5 million of non-mobile broadband connections in Florida, while mobile broadband connections accounted for almost 20 million Florida connections.
Delivered to the Florida Legislature by August 1 each year, the PSC report compiled data from Florida telecommunications companies for the 12-month period ending December 31, 2019. Access the entire report here.
For additional information, visit www.floridapsc.com.
Follow the PSC on Twitter, @floridapsc.