Nearly half of U.S. homes use mobile phones only

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NEW YORK (AP) — Nearly half of U.S. households only use  mobile phones, according to new federal statistics that show more and more people are cutting the cord on landlines.

Now, only about 8 percent of households have just landlines, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday.

More than 47 percent of American homes use only  mobile phones. About 42 percent have both.

A dozen years ago, a mere 3 percent of U.S. households used only mobile phones. Given the trend, officials believe more than half of U.S. homes will be wireless within the next year.

"The tipping point is approaching," said CDC's Stephen Blumberg, the report's lead author.

The preliminary data is based on in-person interviews in more than 21,000 homes during the first six months of this year. The researchers found:

—Not all homes have phones: More than 3 percent have neither a landline nor a cellphone. That percentage has been rising slightly over the past three years.

—Poor adults are much more likely than higher-income people to have only cellphones.

—Younger people rely more on wireless, too: About 71 percent of people in their late 20s live in households with only cellphones. Only 19 percent of people 65 and older use only cellphones.

—The Midwest is the most wireless region, with 52 percent of adults there living in cellphone-only homes. The South and West were nearly as high. In the Northeast, only 32 percent live in cellphone-only households.