An article in my archives drew my attention - the Sydney Morning Herald’s Lucy Bettersby wrote fewer people than ever before are retaining their telephone landlines. Now it is 2019 – no surprise at all.
Lucy Bettersby explained that about 14 per cent of mobile-phone users no longer have a fixed-line telephone at home (2011), as indicated by a survey of 18,000 people by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
The fascinating aspect of this is that of those choosing to keep their fixed telephone line, a third said it was convenient or cheaper than mobile, and just 13 per cent said it was because fixed lines offer better quality or more reliable service.
And I discovered, today, 2019, I am in the 93 per cent of respondents who no longer keep a fixed line for an internet connection. Sometimes, that internet is used for telephone calls, and not a conventional handset.
As wireless connections become more widespread, the 7% too, will not need a landline; as 'smart phones' are able to access the internet. The mobile phone, for the past ‘so many years’ has been used to download the internet, email, text and watch videos. Land lines have not been necessary.
Therefore it has comes as no surprise that much of what comes across my desk, regarding such issues, reveals that it's common in many third world countries for people to do business and banking by mobile phone.
Those who have never before been able to access such services themselves now no longer have to pay a 'middle man' for their connections to the business world outside their village in areas where there has never, ever been a landline in sight.
During 'Around the Tables' mission meetings in Sydney a few years ago, my wife Delma and I had morning tea with a 'twenty something' and this young person did everything from the internet to email to text on her mobile.
We were shown video clips on her mobile phone, she responded to emails during the morning tea, she sent a number of texts, and she checked a couple of web sites for us to clarify some information. This is now the norm.
She explained that a 'mobile phone package' can be purchased at the end of which period that mobile phone is automatically replaced with the next generation mobile. Having done the sums it's cost effectiveness to a land line is significant, let alone having internet access in your hand bag.
All this is showing just how savvy many mission people in this arena, and it's not only in the province of young people, it's something many older people in mission have taken on board.
Many of our young writers are IT nerds (geeks) and this is the world of mission today – this is their world. They are competent in it. Missions today all have such young people, it has changed the face of mission. The one thing I find awkward is that I prepare my presentations to the young writers on my lap top but they appear differently on a mobile phone screen due to compact.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html