September 2, 2002
Dollars and Sense
Wow. It's been a while since I've been here. I no longer recognize many of the frequent authors. I must be slacking again.
But in one of my less slacking moments this afternoon (well, technically yesterday afternoon, now), I decided that I'd had it with my cell phone. So what do I do? I buy another one, of course.
Gotta keep up with the folks at work, after all...
Sitting in front of me is my spiffy new Handspring Treo 300. I must say, I'm impressed so far -- it seems fairly useful. The phone itself is good quality (and even has an impressively good speakerphone), the software is useable (PalmOS rules), and other than a very minor backlighting inconsistency, the display is fairly decent (yes, I'm picky).
So what is it that's PFFTable about this shiny new gadget?
Well, you see, in a fit of thoughtlessness, I "sidegraded" my phone plan. I was on an ancient 1000/1000 minute plan with my last phone (that's "anytime"/"weekends only" minutes, for you technological cave people), and it was ringing in at $90 per month. So now I've got this spiffy new 800/5200(!) plan, for only $50/month. Nice, right?
You see, now we get back to the fact that this is a Treo. It does spiffy web things. To do spiffy web things, you need spiffy TCP/IP things. Spiffy little bytes must transit the spiffy little TCP/IP things.
No problem, I think as I'm signing the credit card thing, it's got 2MB of traffic included! It didn't hit me until I got home just how little data 2MB really is in today's world.
Plowing through the Sprint PCS site (their spiffy new "Sprint PCS Vision" site is down. Heh.), I find my plan documentation and look up "extra traffic". Bah, I think. It's only $0.02 per KB over the limit.
Then I think about that some more, and realize just how sad this is. To illustrate the point, let me ask a question: Would *YOU* pay $20 per megabyte for your home internet connection?
I sure as hell wouldn't.
But I will if I go over my limit on this stupid plan. Looks like it's time to upgrade again.
Ahhhh, such is life in the modern world... Maybe Sprint was using Andersen for their accounting and is quickly trying to recover before anyone notices...
--ZS ("spiffy" is my favorite word today!)
Published: September 2, 2002