Mobile boom forces BT to stop building call boxes

People aren't using payphones, so BT is going to stop building them

A steep drop in revenue has forced BT to stop installing new public telephone boxes around the UK, the company announced Sunday.

BT Payphones, a subsidiary of BT, lost 37 percent of revenue in the last two years and blames the decline on increased use of mobile phones. It has decided not to add to its existing 141,000 callboxes, and will instead concentrate on maintaining and upgrading the network.

The company plans to convert many of its payphones into multimedia kiosks. Six hundred Multi.phones, which offer email, text messaging and Web browsing were launched last week, and will be sited in shopping centres, rail stations and airports across the UK.

Earlier this month BT launched an advertising campaign urging the public to use its callboxes.

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