The report suggests nearly a third are only used once a month, whereas many are never used at all. In fact some of them have even turned into unofficial public urinals.
The iconic red telephone booths in the United Kingdom are nearing the end of the line. The most familiar feature on Britain’s streets are now no longer cost effective to British Telecom (BT). In the digital era, as the mobile phone is spreading its web all across the Britain, the purpose of some 92,000 booths, which were serving in UK, are no longer valid and therefore thousands of them are due to be scrapped. As per the report by Hindustan Times, the cost of maintaining the booths has reportedly gone up to £6 million a year. The report also suggests nearly a third are only used once a month, whereas many are never used at all. In fact some of them have even turned into unofficial public urinals. Also the cost for each call made from them is 60 pence – which is considered to be sufficient for several minutes and texts on a mobile. Therefore British Telecom decided to scrap 20,000 booths even though nearly 33,000 calls a day are still made from them.
According to communications regulator Ofcom’s guidelines, the boxes will need to be removed. A spokesperson from BT told The Guardian that in the last 10 years, the use of the phone booths has dropped by 90 per cent. The spokesperson said, “BT is committed to providing a public payphone service, but with usage declining by over 90% in the last decade, we continue to review and remove payphones which are no longer used.”
The famous design of the telephone booth by Giles Gilbert Scot was first introduced following a competition in 1924, reported CNN. More than 90 years later these British classic phone boxes have now become obsolete and are now just a popular backdrop for thousands of selfies for the people and tourists.