Posts filed under ‘rounding up’

Those 500 cel minutes you paid for…

“Grab your ankles, y’all might feel some, eh… pressure”!

No cord,  yet I’m still tied to my phone

I now can see that the only way I’ll ever get even close to the 500 minutes for one flat rate that my cel provider has promised will be if I was to make one call and time it very carefully: Push SEND to start that call and talk for 499 minutes and 59 seconds, and then quickly push END.

This is a result of the gift of “rounding up” that the phone companies have given themselves, your 1 minute and 7 seconds call will show up as 2 minutes. Multiply that by almost every call you make and consider it to be your holiday all year round gift to Ma Bell or whoever you happen to be using (or more correctly, who is using you).

The more short calls you make the worse it gets for your total expenditure, as each call potentially offers the phone company another $ gift donation. You’d think that there could / would be a windfall profits tax in there somewhere, but you’d be wrong.

I’ve had mobile phone service since 1978, going through the permutations from MTS (mobile telephone service) and IMTS (improved mobile telephone service) in my car, then one of the first cel phones in the form of a 25 pound briefcase “mobile” (perhaps it’s mobile if you’re a weight lifter) phone.

It looked a lot like this

True, it was better than the 60 pound trunk mount IMTS monster that preceded it, but with a very limited life span on operation from the enclosed batteries. Next came the Radio Shack 1.6 watt carry around that was about the size and shape of an old school lunch box, which begat the Motorola Brick, then (in the late 1980′s) things finally got lighter and smaller.

early hands free option

Hands free, the early days

As I recall from many years ago, the bill for my first cell phone had the charges shown in 6 second increments, so that call mentioned above with a duration of 67 seconds only cost me one minute and two tenths, not the two minutes it would be today. Again, do the math.

I suppose I could live with most of the thieving sort of crap associated with the communications industry, I just wish their customer service people could work on finding a way to get their accent of India filtered out.

Don’t like it? Don’t call me, I’ll call you, but it’ll be after 9 p.m., before 6 a.m., or sometime on the weekend when it’s free. That reminds me, did you know that cel calls used to be free before 8 a.m. or after 6 p.m.? However, some bean counter figured out that by pushing that time back an hour would generate x million dollars more income for,  eh… nothing during a given physical year, and so it went until now when before 6 a.m. and after 9 p.m. are the accepted norms for us lemmings. BOHICA indeed!

The ownership of any and all photos, opinions, and quotes above (including my own) belong to the material’s creators, credit is given when known, but because success has a million parents and failure is an orphan, blame is not.

December 24, 2007 at 6:04 am 1 comment


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