I for one do not welcome our POTS replacing overlords. We had AT&T replace our old POTS connection with a box, for some reason (it's costing AT&T more money!). This box straight up sucks poop through a straw. I hate it. It's prone to crashing, and has to be powered. In our neighborhood, we have Detroit Terribly Engineered for power, and they can't maintain their connections worth anything. What made it so much better over the years was being able to get a corded phone off the shelf in the kitchen, plug it in, and get a dial tone which we then used to scream at DTE. It was a guaranteed bet that it was up, ready to react to your call at the drop of a hat. Does this box replace it? Not even close. It has several problems: 1. The signal strength is weak. Although it's an antiquated technology, I've still had to fire up a fax machine occasionally. The signal coming out of that dumb box is so weak we have to unplug the entire rest of the house in order to convince it that there is a phone connection. 2. It all hinges on the box. As I mentioned before, this box sucks. It's prone to crashing, which can't be resolved unless it gets power-cycled. I don't want to be in a situation where I can't call 911 because some box had a brain-fart. 3. It also needs power to run. This sucks too, because I had to go out and buy a UPS, since AT&T didn't give me one. This will last up to eight hours before finally giving in. With week-long power outages becoming more frequent, I don't want my access to services to hinge on how long the UPS can keep the box going.
Sure, it's harder to maintain a web of copper. But the reliability is what made the landline the landline, so unless they have some magical solution which can give at least the exact same service as before, I want out.