Please hold: Verizon's $5 phone plan still up in the air


Yesterday, reports about Verizon's $5 landline offer were popping up all over the Internet. I'm surprised the Google search for it didn't hit Denny's free breakfast offer numbers. I mean, $5 for landline service? Sweet deal.

Well, not yet.

The Wall Street Journal, which broke the story, noted that the $5 plan will be offered closer to summer. However, a Verizon executive, who asked to remain unnamed, stated that the third-party source providing information to the WSJ reporter made an error and there is no set time table for the roll-out of the plan.

Bill Kula, Verizon's director of media relations, confirms that no firm plans to offer the $5 or $10 voice plans have been made. "We're merely considering a wide range of offers now and are looking at different types of plans that encourage people to continue using their landlines," he says. However, discussions regarding the offers have been going on for at least two months.

The $5 service in question would allow for unlimited incoming calls and the ability to place a call to 911 and to Verizon's customer support line. The $10 service in consideration would also include unlimited outbound local calls. Both services are basic connection plans and exclude features such as call-wating, call-forwarding and caller ID. These plans, if introduced, would be offered to customers who live in areas where Verizon wireline services are offered: 25 states (plus Washington D.C.), or approximately 32 million households.

According to Kula, Verizon has seen a roughly 8% landline phone service loss every year, for the past five to eight years. The company hopes that by purchasing the basic telephone plans, customers would be motivated to order Verizon's high-speed Internet and digital entertainment services as well. Kula stresses that individuals do not have to subscribe to Verizon's wireless or broadband services in order to take advantage of the $5 and $10 plans, if they are introduced. Therefore, consumers, regardless of who your cable or cell phone providers are, you can purchase Verizon's voice plans with no hassle.