Now most of us have mobile phones, an odd situation has arisen where the only reason many people really need a landline now is for their internet connection. Some don’t bother having a landline phone at all, they use a mobile for calls and texts and the landline is used exclusively for plugging the router into. If only there was a simple way to get broadband at home without using a landline. Well, there already is, there has been for a while now, mobile internet, and with the advent of 4G in more and more places, reliable mobile internet at speeds to rival wired connections.
Internet provider Relish have taken the next logical step and now provide a simple, unlimited 4G broadband connection in your home without the need for a landline and without any mucking about with tethering your phone.
You can get anything from a one month contract upwards, Relish promise unlimited usage with no caps or traffic shaping and if you order before 4pm in central London, you can be up and running the next working day.
So how exactly does it work? It’s simple really, Relish provide you with their Plug and Play indoor hub. It plugs into any electrical wall socket, but not your phoneline, and works just like any router, except it’s picking up your internet connection wirelessly using 4G instead of through a landline. So no need for wiring snaking round your house, no microfilters, no installation, just plug in the hub to any socket in the house and you’re online.
The hub cab connect up to 25 Wifi-enabled devices and it has two network ports as well so potentially you could run 27 devices off the hub, a real money saver if you are sharing a house. Since line rental alone averages at around £16 per month, with Internet Service Provider and calls to pay for on top of that, it’s hard to imagine why anyone would want to keep a landline now.
So what’s the catch? Well the big one at the moment is the Relish network area coverage. Relish only offer their service in certain areas, ostensibly central London, but they do have plans to expand the network in the future. The concept of large scale landline free broadband is still in its infancy, but other companies are making similar moves too, so in time we may even see a competitive market with costs coming down to a fraction of what it used to cost to have a landline and a contract with an ISP.
It raises some interesting questions. Will broadband without a landline spell the death of the old fashioned landline? If less and less people use landlines, will it make them prohibitively expensive? And most worrying of all, what are they going to do with all the telegraph poles?
[Image via Russ Payne]