By Stephen Schenck | September 26, 2012 4:58 PM
Whether it’s because of sky-high data rates, all-in-one family plans, stupefyingly-overpriced SMS billing, or just having more lines than we need, Americans are paying out the wazoo for our smartphone service. Individually, we may notice rates going up, or that we seem to be getting less for our money, year after year, but just how bad has it gotten? Some new data from the Labor Department is out, revealing just what we’re paying for phone service, and how it relates to other household expenses.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone to learn that from 2007 to 2011, the average US household’s cellular bill grew. Where a family might pay $1110 a year back in 2007, that figure’s more like $1226 today, a 10.45% increase.
That might not sound so bad, until you look at other spending trends. In contrast to cellular bills, Americans cut back on their spending towards clothing, entertainment, vehicles, and dining-out over that same four year period.
Sure, it feels like we’re getting a lot more for our money now than we did back in 2007, with high-speed data and ever-improving coverage, but will we ever get to a point where our phone bills remain relatively constant, or – god forbid – actually start falling back to previous levels? Unless something changes soon, we might have to start digging further and further into our food-and-clothes budgets to keep up with the latest smartphone plans.