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April 24, 2005

Really, what IS enough?

"You never know what is enough unless you know what is more than enough."
-- James Agee (1909-55), American writer, critic

Recently in commentary about privacy I noted some surprising statistics about the growth of internet-enabled devices. 10 to 1 these devices are now apparently outselling PCs.

While there are numerous issues created by this massively growing user base - here is where the rubber hits the road; These things are cool! And apparently, we can't live with out them - to the tune of about $243 per month.

I came acros the following sidebar in Wired Magazine today - the May 2005 editon - entitled Subscription Overload!.

The gist is that our evolving digital-lifestyles - Web, Music, TV, Movies, News, Phones, etc. - well, it comes at a cost:

• Cable/Satellite TV (Comcast Gold): $87.94
• Broadband Internet (SBC/Yahoo DSL): $19.99
• VOIP Phone Service (Vonage Premium): $24.99
• Mobile Phone Service (Cingular): $39.98
• Satellite Radio (Sirius Standard): $12.96
• Streaming Music Service (Rhapsody): $9.95
• Mobile Headlines (SPOT watch): $9.95
• DVR Service (TiVo): $12.95
• DVD Service (NetFlix): $17.99
• Online News Site (Salon): $2.92
• Online Game Service (Xbox Live): $4.17

Rough Total: $243.78

This doesn't even count costs related to the popular Blackberry/Treo fad, digital photo processing, and GPS services via handhelds and our vehicles.

Sadly, my personal monthly usage is not too dissimilar from the above. I don't have Satellite Radio - yet. I've considered it, but doubt I can get this past the wife, given all the other tech indulgences.

I've got satellite TV, Comcast broadband, VOIP phone service through Lingo, Cingular cell phone, avid TiVo junkie, ex-NetFlixer, and would love to have Xbox and Xbox live.

Enough about me, how's your list shape up? How's that make you feel? You're probably too busy with your "connectedness" like me to tell - but at this moment, mine makes me feel guilty. Cut back by 50% and save nearly $1500 per year. Insert standard financial blurb here about how much that becomes in 20 years.

My point, I suppose, is that the market here is real - it is you and me, and everyone else - it is global - and it is huge. Maybe you already knew this, but me - well, I've just noticed in the brief time today between my blog updates, digitial camera downloads and online banking where I took an "offline" break to read Wired. Okay, I'm not THAT bad - but you get the idea.

The gadget generation seems to be really led by babyboomers, followed by Gen X, Y, and Z. My kids don't know life with out a TiVo. Their future utility bills will likely include most of these things and who knows what other future services.

So, it is a fun and interesting tech-filled life we can lead. For today's technology and service businesses - opportunity abounds. For consumers, even in third-world countries, life is good.

See you online!

Posted by gcrgcr at 10:39 PM | Comments (0)