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American Consumers Cut the Cord

Consultancy Nielsen Co. estimates that 17% of all Americans ?20 million of us — already rely on cell phones to make all calls. They have cut the cord, and are no longer paying for landlines.

Nielsen believes such wireless substitution will skyrocket in the next few months, as consumers try to cut their spending in the face of worsening economy and higher gas and food prices. Ranks of wireless-only consumers will rise to 20% of the U.S. population by year-end, Nielsen estimates. One in five consumers will not have a home phone line by January. That’s staggering.

And that’s very bad news for landline telcos. Clearly, there’s a chance that line losses by companies like Verizon and AT&T will accelerate in the next few months, big time.

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