Smart Phone Budget Monster

Cellphones Are Eating the Family Budget

More than half of all U.S. cellphone owners carry a device like the iPhone, a shift that has unsettled household budgets across the country. Government data show people have spent more on phone bills over the past four years, even as they have dialed back on dining out, clothes and entertainment—cutbacks that have been keenly felt in the restaurant, apparel and film industries. The tug of war is only going to get more intense. Wireless carriers are betting they can pull bills even higher by offering faster speeds on expensive new networks and new usage-based data plans. The effort will test the limits of consumer spending as the draw of new technology competes with cellphone owners' more rudimentary needs and desires.
Comment: I want one. I priced an IPhone 5 this week. It's not the entry cost of the device that bothers me but the $ 100 per month (give or take) monthly fees.


  1. This is something that has baffled me for quite awhile. I never cease to be amazed at the money people will spend on cell "phones" (really, computers). I got my first smart phone 6 months ago, but only because my employer offered to raise my reimbursement amount to cover the data plan, plus some. Since the cost of the device was on me, I purchased a re-certified Motorola Droid Bionic for $20 total out-of-pocket expense.

    It was tough enough on our budget before, paying the $80 total for two lines. I've said it several times over the last few months: if I was paying my entire cell bill with no reimbursement, I'd feel I was wasting my money - I don't use the data on the phone nearly enough to make it worth it. It's certainly convenient at times, but that's about the extent of it.


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