This Is our Village

Tuesday, May 2, 2017


Whether the Village finally selects Comcast or Atlantic Broadband to be its TV cable communications provider, the following are two things to keep in mind in deciding whether to take their Internet or telephone options:

1. Taxes and Fees:
If you are comparing rates with your current Internet/phone rates after taxes and fees, add 15 percent to the CC or AB offerings to approximately cover their taxes and fees. You want to be comparing apples with apples.

2. POTS telephone line:
There is a value, especially to the elderly, in maintaining a POTS telephone service. POTS simply stands for "Plain Old Telephone Service" and refers to the old phone service you may have had in the past with AT&T or Ma Bell or other such telephone companies when your single phone line carried BOTH the electrical current (at a very low voltage) and the phone conversation. Remember those days? Some of us still have such a POTS phone service.

An advantage to keeping a POTS phone service is that you are less likely to lose service in a storm. Were you here during the three hurricanes of 2004-2005? Many of us in the Village lost power for a week or ten days in two of them, but our POTS telephone service remained working. "But I have a cell phone and that works when the power goes off," you may say. Yes, it usually does for a while, but then the cell phone needs to be recharged, and how are you going to recharge it if you have lost electric power? Unless you have the right kind of battery backup device, you won't be able to.

Aside from storm damage, remember that we are in an age of potential cyber attack where the electrical grid could be down for days (and let us hope only days). Today even POTS is not 100% safe from failing, but it is the closest-to-100% way to stay in touch with your friends and the outside world.

One further point. If you have POTS and your telephone instruments are hooked up to answering machine devices, because these devices are plugged into electrical outlets, you probably won't be able to use the attached phones if you lose power. The solution is to have one of your phones connected directly into a telephone jack.

1 comment:

  1. I will never give up my land line phone (POTS). During the big blackout in August 2003 up in New York, my land line cord phone was the only thing that worked. I constantly get made fun of that we still have a land line phone even though I have a cell phone. I have a family member that retired from Verizon up north and said that once you get rid of your land line phone you can't get it back.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.