While it may seem that traditional landlines are going the way of the dodo they are still popular with a lot of people, especially when you take into account people that actually like using a phone to talk to people. It is quite often cheaper to use a landline than a mobile for regular calls, especially with all the deals providers have on offer. For example if you combine your broadband, phone, and TV with TalkTalk you can get free unlimited calls to UK landlines 24/7.
So what do you look for in a phone if you want to make the most of all them free minutes? In general most people buy digital cordless phones nowadays, which are often referred to as DECT, which stands for Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications. In general if you buy from a known company you won’t go very wrong but it helps to read reviews and take certain factors into account such as:
Great sound quality – Most DECT phones will generally have good call quality but it is important to check reviews first, just to be sure. Call quality will also be directly related to the range of the phone. Most retailers such as John Lewis have a review system for you to check other people’s opinions of the phone first.
Range – The distance your phone is from your receiver will have a direct effect on call quality, most phones have a 300m range, this includes the cheapest phone from John Lewis, and their most expensive phone. It is worth noting that this is the outdoor range, the indoor range is normally more like 50m
Easy-to-use – Some phones have dozens of functions, and while this can be great it can also increase the complexity of use, some phones are so advanced they are touchscreen only. If you are a technophobe it may be worth keeping it simple.
Answering machine – As these phones are restricted to home use it is easy to miss calls. It is generally worth looking for an answering machine. Answering machines are available on both cheap and expensive phones and often are only a few pounds more expensive than the non-answering machine version
Multiple Devices – If you have a particularly large house it might be worth investing in a multiple pack so you can have phones in different rooms.
Other Features – Often, the more expensive the phone the more features it will offer which can be quite useful for some people. Common features include: built in phone book, the ability to send and receive text messages, night time features (disable ringtone). BT even have a phone that can block withheld numbers and international calls along with 10 other numbers, which is very useful for avoiding nuisance calls.