land·​line ˈland-ˌlīn How to pronounce landline (audio)
variants or less commonly land line
: a line of transportation or communication on land
especially : a telephone line that transmits signals from one station to another directly along a wire without the use of radio waves
It reminds me of the tipping point several years ago when people realized they no longer needed a telephone landline and would do just fine with their cell phones. Rana Foroohar
often used before another noun
a landline phone a landline network
: a telephone that connects by wire : a landline telephone
Of course, if you're really worried, you could ditch your cell phone for a quaint landline.Kiera Butler

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In the era of landlines, a PR/TT meant getting a record of all the incoming and outgoing calls from a phone. Devlin Barrett, Washington Post, 1 May 2023 The poll of 600 Biden voters and 600 Trump voters, taken by landline and cell phone April 15-18, underscores the uncertainties. Susan Page, USA TODAY, 23 Apr. 2023 For example, our data shows a decline in traditional landline subscribers but an appetite for more fiber. Tim Fitzpatrick, The Salt Lake Tribune, 5 Jan. 2023 Officials from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) confirmed search efforts were ongoing, and that the affected area has no power, landline service or cell service. John Woolley, CBS News, 14 July 2022 Inside the kitchen, the landline phone was missing, and the shelves were nearly bare. Katie Engelhart, New York Times, 9 May 2023 The poll was conducted by The Post and George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government between Feb. 17 and 27 among a random sample of 1,668 Washington-area residents reached on cellphones and landlines. Emily Guskin, Washington Post, 14 Apr. 2023 Alabama lawmakers are considering a bill to add a monthly surcharge of 98 cents to cellphone and landline bills to raise about $70 million a year to expand care for people suffering from mental health crises, including those at risk of suicide. Mike Cason |, al, 26 Jan. 2023 The survey was conducted by landline telephone, cell phone, over the Web and in interviews, with 2,093 surveys were completed. Alexa Gagosz,, 14 Nov. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'landline.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1865, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of landline was in 1865

Dictionary Entries Near landline

Cite this Entry

“Landline.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


land·​line -ˌ(d)līn How to pronounce landline (audio)
: a line of communication (as by telephone) consisting of a cable laid on land
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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