10 Best Landline Phones Consumer Reports 2019 – Top Rated

e spent over 40 hours testing, researching and evaluating cordless telephones to find the best landline setup for your home or small business. Overall, we recommend the Panasonic KX-TGE433B cordless phone with answering machine. It’s easy-to-use with large buttons and a brightly backlit screen. Plus, it packs in extras like call blocking, emergency backup power and talking caller ID. We’re also fans of the simple VTech CS6719 – which is a great value option if you’re looking for something basic. At the other end of the spectrum, the Panasonic KX-TG7875S has more features than any other phone we reviewed and is better suited to business integration than other phone sets.

Top 10 Landline Phones
Bestseller No. 1
PANASONIC Expandable Cordless Phone System with Answering Machine and Call Block - 2 Cordless...
1736 Reviews
PANASONIC Expandable Cordless Phone System with Answering Machine and Call Block - 2 Cordless...
  • ONE TOUCH TELEPHONE CALL BLOCK - Register up to 150 numbers with one-touch Call Block on the cordless phone...
  • BI-LINGUAL CALLER ID - Talking Caller ID audibly announces caller information in either English or Spanish...
Bestseller No. 2
Panasonic KX-TGF382M DECT 2-Handset Landline Telephone
965 Reviews
Panasonic KX-TGF382M DECT 2-Handset Landline Telephone
  • Sync up to two smartphones to make and receive cell calls with Link2Cell handsets, Intelligent base unit....
  • Get talking ID alerts from Link2Cell handsets when texts are received
Bestseller No. 3
PANASONIC Corded / Cordless Phone System with Answering Machine and One Touch Call Blocking – 2...
1690 Reviews
PANASONIC Corded / Cordless Phone System with Answering Machine and One Touch Call Blocking – 2...
  • EASY-TO-USE PHONE BASE - 3.4-inch high-contrast LCD easily adjusts back and forth for maximum readability....
  • ONE TOUCH TELEPHONE CALL BLOCK - Register up to 250 numbers with one-touch Call Block on base unit & cordless...
Bestseller No. 4
AT&T EL52313 3-Handset Expandable Cordless Phone with Answering System & Extra-large Backlit Keys
6659 Reviews
AT&T EL52313 3-Handset Expandable Cordless Phone with Answering System & Extra-large Backlit Keys
  • Enjoy a speakerphone that can keep up with your calls. Increase participation by allowing both ends to...
  • Easy-to-read LCD on the cordless handset. High-contrast black text on a white background provides for an...
Bestseller No. 5
PANASONIC DECT 6.0 Expandable Cordless Phone System with Answering Machine and Call Blocking - 3...
1645 Reviews
PANASONIC DECT 6.0 Expandable Cordless Phone System with Answering Machine and Call Blocking - 3...
  • BI-LINGUAL CALLER ID - Talking Caller ID audibly announces caller information in either English or Spanish...
  • ONE TOUCH TELEPHONE CALL BLOCK - Register up to 250 numbers with one-touch Call Block on base unit & cordless...
Bestseller No. 6
AT&T EL51203 DECT 6.0 Phone with Caller ID/Call Waiting, 2 Cordless Handsets, Silver
1490 Reviews
AT&T EL51203 DECT 6.0 Phone with Caller ID/Call Waiting, 2 Cordless Handsets, Silver
  • Enjoy a speakerphone that can keep up with your calls. Increase participation by allowing both ends to...
  • Easy-to-read LCD on the cordless handset. High-contrast black text on a white background provides for an...
Bestseller No. 7
VTech CS6114 DECT 6.0 Cordless Phone with Caller ID/Call Waiting, White/Grey with 1 Handset
5503 Reviews
VTech CS6114 DECT 6.0 Cordless Phone with Caller ID/Call Waiting, White/Grey with 1 Handset
  • DECT 6.0 Digital technology, Caller ID/Call Waiting, Backlit keypad and display
  • 30 name and number phonebook directory, 30 name and number Caller ID history, Voicemail Waiting Indicator
Bestseller No. 8
AT&T CL82407 DECT 6.0 Expandable Cordless Phone with Answering System & Smart Call Blocker,...
983 Reviews
AT&T CL82407 DECT 6.0 Expandable Cordless Phone with Answering System & Smart Call Blocker,...
  • Digital Answering system with voice guide records up to 22 minutes
  • HD audio with Equalizer for customized audio
Bestseller No. 9
Panasonic Bluetooth Cordless Phone KX-TG7875S Link2Cell with Enhanced Noise Reduction & Digital...
3458 Reviews
Panasonic Bluetooth Cordless Phone KX-TG7875S Link2Cell with Enhanced Noise Reduction & Digital...
  • Ideal for Home or Small Business Use: single-line phone with five cordless handsets can link up to two...
  • Answering Machine with Message Forwarding: Digital Answering Machine feature allows you to get voice messages...
Bestseller No. 10
VTech CS6529-4B 4-Handset DECT 6.0 Cordless Phone with Answering System and Caller ID, Expandable up...
523 Reviews
VTech CS6529-4B 4-Handset DECT 6.0 Cordless Phone with Answering System and Caller ID, Expandable up...
  • * 50 name and number phonebook directory
  • * Wall-mount bracket included

Why Trust Us 

We put in over 40 hours examining features and specifications, reading online reviews and comparing the performances of the top phones available to find the best ones. We began our testing process by researching the most popular cordless phones on the market. After some shopping and sifting through dozens of online reviews, we narrowed our contenders down to the best eight prospects and got our hands on them for some testing. Our lab conducted battery life tests to evaluate the charge time, talk time and standby time for each unit.

Some things you can only learn with hands-on experience, so in addition to conducting thorough, well-informed research, we also got up close and personal with the products and consulted telecom industry insiders to make sure these phones live up to all they promise.

To test, we went through the setup process for each cordless phone to establish its ease of use score. This process included setting the date and time, turning off key tones, adding a few entries into the phone book, adjusting the ringer volume, trying out the handset locator function and recording a message on the answering machine. We timed all the phone’s charge cycles and standby times. We also took each phone’s design into account, which we judged by the display, button layout, how comfortable the handset was to hold and overall attractiveness of the device.

How to Choose a Cordless Phone

There’s a wide range of possibilities when it comes to choosing a cordless phone. There are simple phones that are great for emergencies, and complex systems that can make a great addition to a small business. Whatever you’re shopping for, these are some things to keep in mind.

Price
A basic cordless phone can cost as little as $20, but features like an answering machine, talking caller ID and emergency backup power increase the price. For simply making and receiving calls, an inexpensive phone like the VTech CS6719 works perfectly. But if you want something nicer with ease-of-use features like a headset jack or Bluetooth connectivity, expect to pay more than $50.

Number of Handsets
Most cordless phone systems are expandable, so you can have multiple handsets on a single line by connecting just the main base via telephone jack. Handsets come with your initial purchase, but you can buy individual accessory handsets to expand your system. The products we tested can have five to 12 total handsets. If you wanted, you can keep one in every room of your house. Extra handsets usually come with their own charging cradle.

Backup Power
Phone lines still work when the power goes out, but many cordless phones lack any backup power features, making it impossible for you to make calls. If you have frequent power outages or if you don’t have a charged cell phone as a backup option in case of an emergency, look for a phone that has an emergency backup battery.

Features and Settings
Features like handset location, handset-to-handset intercom function, caller ID, backlit displays and speakerphone are standard across all the phones we tested. Other features, like a built-in answering machine, headset jack or talking caller ID can also be extremely useful, particularly for home offices. Phones like the Panasonic KX-TG7875S are packed with customizable features and settings, including cell phone integration and call blocking. These phones are great for business but may be a bit too much for a humble home phone.

How Do Cordless Phones Work?

Cordless phone systems all follow a similar form factor: one main base connected to your telephone socket and one or more handsets that connect to the base wirelessly. Basically, cordless phones combine traditional telephone and radio technologies. The base acts as a transmitter/receiver and translator, sending and receiving signals send back and forth between the base, the handset, and the phone line.

Most cordless phones, including all the ones we tested, now run on DECT (Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications) 6.0 technology. The differences between this type of phone and others (2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz phones) include better range, better sound quality and less interference, as it uses a frequency band specifically set aside for cordless phone use.

Landlines vs. Cell Phones

Most people in the United States do not have landlines, according to this survey by the National Center for Health Statistics. Mobile phones have replaced landlines over the past decade, and the trend continues, with more Americans living in mobile-only households each year. About 45 percent of adults still use a landline phone, so traditional phone service is far from obsolete. However, the country is becoming more mobile-oriented.

Cell phones have a few advantages over landlines, including mobility and accessibility. Most people who have landlines have cell phones as well, making the landline an added, unnecessary expense for many people. Even with cordless setups, landline phones are locked to their locations. Most people carry their cell phones with them so they don’t miss important calls, messages, emails or news. And because smartphones continue to offer new conveniences, it often makes more sense to choose a smartphone over a landline.

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