Goodbye Pay Phones

 PhotoFrom Slashdot:  AT&T is decommissioning their pay phones.  Video killed the radio star, p2p, Skype, and now this?  Probably a somewhat overdue capitulation on AT&T’s part given the ubiquity of the mobile phone.  I commented in a previous blog post about encountering a decommissioned pay phone — clearly they are on their way to becoming an historical curiosity, though perhaps they will live on in small numbers in dense urban areas and/or as a result of public outcry related to public safety and/or accessibility concerns.

  • The thing that I found impressive in this wasn’t that pay phones were going away, but that the peak of the pay phone market was in 1998. It’s impressive how quickly something so ubiquitous has gone away.

  • I think a few payphones will probably remain, since they are likely profitable, and serve a public-access need, like this one I ran into recently: