The first ZDnet journalist that writes an intelligent, honest, and in-depth article about how awful the carrier industry is in the US, I will instantly become one of their fans. *Until they go and write something incredibly awful shortly after.
In an economy where people have to make really hard decisions, why can’t the media start showing people how to save a bit of money every month? My sister-in-law is moving away to a remote part of the state to finish up her college degree. She hates her Metro PCS phone (that supposedly has coverage for talk/text only) and is going to start paying probably double every month for Verizon- she’s cool with the service. I have to have my wife talk to her about using Straight Talk (aka Verizon’s network in that location) since she knows I despise paying high rates for my cell service. She would save $50 a month, which for a college student, is a lot of money.
I bought my Lumia 710 off-contract at T-Mobile. Since I don’t watch videos/movies or stream music, I don’t care that I only get 100mb at 4G/HSPA+, plus I’m on WiFi most of the time I want to watch a quick YouTube video. I pay $50 for unlimited, talk, text and web. Even if I did do lots of streaming, I could pay $60/month and get 2gigs of 4G and still be saving a considerable amount of money. Including the cost of my phone, I’ll still save close to $1,000 over two years.
It’s interesting to me to see the marketshare of phones in Europe and other countries that make you pay full price for a phone, but give you more flexibility and better rates on your service. I believe I read a week or two ago that Windows Phone in Russia has more marketshare than the iPhone. If carriers had to compete on service quality and rates as opposed to the phones they carried, customers would have a double win.