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Long Distance Calls
Technological developments over the last 50 years have enabled people to communicate by telephone from locations spanning the globe. Long distance phone calls started as a luxury afforded to only the wealthy or well-connected, but now prove relatively useless to those with current internet and cellular service. The practice of calling long distance enabled great advances in business and politics. The ability to stay connected with offshore employees or allies in a foreign land proved immeasurable for many of the parties involved.
Long distance calling exploded onto the public scene as telephone service providers focused more on research and development. Establishing a competitive pricepoint generated much of the marketing most associate with long distance capabilities. Phone companies offered long distance calling capabilities from a pay-per-minute format to unlimited long distance plans. Though big sellers initially, these offers became less appealing with the development of the internet and cellular phone service.
Cell phones essentially neutralized the benefits of long distance calling from a land-line provider. The capabilities via satellite and transmissions not bound to the wires of analog phone providers result in a clear communication with no delay to nearly any region of the civilized world. Most cell phone providers offer contracted rates as a flat fee for blocks of minutes, eliminating the need for long distance service outside of the cell phone plan. Satellite phones work in a similar fashion to cell phones for long distance calling. These units, however, proved less successful in bad weather and subject to periods of inaccessibility.
Once the technology of telephone service advanced past rotary phones into a digital format with transmissions successful over an extreme range, long distance from a major phone service provider proved unnecessary. Currently, progress is being made in strides in the area of internet phone communications. Internet phone service offers yet another less expensive alternative to the long distance plan. Internet providers often incorporate phone service with long distance calling into contracted rates for service. The competition from strictly internet phone providers should push these rates lower still. Communication over long distances is more accessible and manageable than at any other point in time.