Wife recently switched all of our "communication channels" (my term, for lack of better words) -- phone, cable and Internet -- to one provider.
Wife handles all of these matters because I am woefully inefficient at doing so, and also lacking the patience required to maneuver through all of it. Where once talking on the telephone and having one installed in one's home was a relatively simple process, it now involves "bundling" and other such nonsense. A phone wired into in one's home is now called a "land line" and more and more, folks are opting not to have one and making their cell phone their primary point of contact.
I can remember an antenna on top of my parents' house that enabled us to watch three channels of network television, before we advanced to "cable-vision" which gave us the same thing plus Public Television, and a much clearer picture. When Wife and I married we used "rabbit ears" until we got cable when our first child was born. We needed something to do in the middle of the night when we were up with him and reception was too sketchy. Now of course there are hundreds of channels available via either a "dish" or "cable," although there is very little of any quality on any of those channels.
Last but not least, the Internet comes into our home via mostly wireless devices now, whereas once various wires and cords were necessary.
Of course this is a gold mine for the companies that provide these services.
Wife got tired of our cable and Internet provider overcharging us every month. It got to the point of being ridiculous. When she would call them they would always apologize and credit back the overcharged amount, then assure her they would fix the problem. Only the problem never got fixed.
She talked to our telephone provider and they gave her a sweet deal that included everything, at a substantial savings. We made the change about a month ago and it's been fairly smooth sailing ever since. Of course our old cable and Internet provider did everything but offer to come cook Thanksgiving dinner if we would stay with them, but Wife stuck to her guns. Since she is a kind and merciful person, she became very sad during the parting conversation, but let's face it: they caused it. If the new guys start the same shenanigans, we'll look at going back.
Here's the big news involving our new service: it includes a new "smart phone" for yours truly. I now am the owner of an iPhone 4S. A couple of years ago I wrote a piece here about all the modern services in which I did not take part. I have now succumbed to this one.
So far I like it. It's much easier to use than I thought it would be.
But please do me a favor. If you see me walking down the street looking at that silly phone and ignoring everything and everyone around me, stop and yank it out of my hand. Thank you.