More than one in five households in Canada have cell phones as their only form of telephone service.
In 2013, 21% of households reported using a cell phone exclusively, up from 13% in 2010, according to data from Statistics Canada.
Exclusive cell phone use is more pronounced in young households where all of the members are under 35 years of age. In 2013, 60% of these households reported using a cell phone exclusively, up from 39% in 2010 and 26% in 2008. Although exclusive cell phone use is less common in households composed only of those aged 55 and over, it is on the rise, up from 2% in 2008 to 6% in 2013.
Total cell phone use, whether used exclusively or in combination with other types of phone service, continues to grow in popularity in Canada. In 2013, 83% of Canadian households had an active cell phone, up from 78% in 2010.
Differences in total cell phone use were observed across provinces. The proportion of households with an active cell phone was highest in Alberta (91%), British Columbia (85%) and Ontario (85%). In each of the Atlantic provinces, the proportion of households with an active cell phone was 80%. The proportion was lowest in Quebec, at 76%.
The share of households with a traditional landline fell from 66% in 2010 to 56% in 2013. In Quebec (43%), the percentage of households with a landline was lower than in any other province, while the proportion using telephone service by cable modem (37%) was almost twice the overall Canadian rate (19%).
Telephone service from Internet providers (voice over Internet Protocol, such as Skype) was still relatively rare in 2013, with 3% of households reporting its use.