What Price Data?
My parents, the Notorious Babs and Big L, declared 2013 the year of the iPhone, thusly granting Her Royal Highness and Odd Number their own royal instruments. I use a flip phone that is reminiscent of Captain James Kirk’s “communicator”.
My texting prowess consists of prose such as “?” Or “ok” sometimes shortened to “k” if I’m feeling arthritic.
Under these conditions, one does not need a data plan. But all of a sudden, I had hungry iPhones to feed and iPhones need data. I consulted with the suave salesman Rico from AT&T to assess what kind of data plan we needed. I did not grow up around data, so my terms might be inexact, but I believe Rico recommended a gigowatt of data.
A few months later, a CPA helped me figure out that our AT&T bill was now consuming a higher percentage of our gross monthly income than our home mortgage. Balderdash! I decided. I phoned Rico and asked him to give us the cheapest data plan money could buy. Rico went down fighting. He told me he needed to record our conversation so the NSA could hear me agreeing that I only wanted .10 nano watts of data even though 7000 megawatts were available for only $10 more per month per phone.
I spoke to the children, who were very understanding. “So, like, could I still stream Pandora all day?” HRH asked. Probably not, I told her, keeping Rico’s dire warnings of data poverty to myself. But for the low low price of $10/month, you could go back to extravagant business as usual, I advised. She reacted to this suggestion with some of the emotions one would expect if we had just informed her Highness that we were enrolling her in the human trafficking industry so Iron Chef and I could go to Hawaii.
I announced that I would find them jobs that would enable them to offset the upgrade. Like what … human trafficking? This is how the children ended up on what amounts to a bread and water diet of the data world.
Admittedly, I don’t understand what kinds of activities consume what volume of data, other than if Chef or I happen to ask HRH or Odd to look something up on the iPhone, anything really — this immediately causes the dreaded data overage that Rico and the NSA predicted ominously.
But just think, big data could be yours for the low low price of one plasma donation per month. Streaming Pandora and spinning platelets one nano watt at a time.
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