Payphones Survey: Most Don't Use Phone Booths But Feel Safer Knowing They're There

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Posted Dec 26, 2012
Anne Pilon

Payphones were once widely used across the country, but since cell phones have become so common they haven’t been used nearly as much. However, recent disasters and emergency situations such as Hurricane Sandy have proved the usefulness of keeping payphones around when cell phone towers fail. And so cities like New York are trying to increase the number of payphones available, but in order to make them more useful on a daily basis they are beginning to add new features like internet hotspots. Could payphones start making a comeback thanks to newer technology?


Payphone Use

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 85% of respondents said that they have used a payphone at some point. However, 61% of those respondents said that they have not used a payphone since they first got a cell phone. 21% said that they have used payphones rarely since receiving a cell phone. 7% said they sometimes use payphones, even though they own a cell phone. And just 2% said that they still use payphones often, even though they own a cell phone. Another 9% said that they do not own a cell phone.

Emergency Situations

In general, 52% of respondents said that they definitely feel safer knowing that payphones are around in case of emergency situations. 38% said that payphones make them feel somewhat safer. And 11% said they don’t feel any safer knowing payphones are around in case of emergency.That might be due to the fact that just 4% of respondents said that they know of many payphone locations around their home. 25% said they know of at least one or two payphone locations specifically. 38% said they know there are no payphones located around their home. And 32% said they just don’t pay attention enough to know where any of them are.

Public Wifi

And as for new technology helping these payphone kiosks stay relevant, 8% of overall respondents said that they often go to public places to use wifi or internet connection. 23% said they sometimes do. 27% said they rarely do. And 42% said that they never go to public places for internet access.You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Payphones from FlickrWhat do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on December 22 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

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