Student or Learner
Can someone please explain the difference between 'on the phone' and 'over the phone'?
Here are two sentences:
1. He gave me the news on the phone.
2. He gave me the news over the phone.
What's the difference?
Also, here is one of the differences I believe to be true:
We can say "He is on the phone" but not "He is over the phone." If we want to use 'over', then we need to further expand on the sentence, like "He was fired over the phone". What I'd like to know is if this is true or not?
*Not a Teacher*
In the example you've given, I would use "over the phone".
However, either one would work.
The two phrases are generally interchangeable, with the exception of instances such as "He is over the phone." as you have already mentioned.
Information, conversations, and transactions can be exchanged or conducted both "on" and "over" the phone.
Over the phone to me is similar in meaning to by means of the phone.
PS *(metaphorically - a person 'on' the phone is really somewhere else, connected by the telephone network, but the metaphor of telephone communication has the person on it rather than just speaking via it)