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« Tap, Tap ... Is This Thing On? | Main | Irenaeus's Existential Moment »

April 16, 2008


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JS Bangs

People still use dial-up?

Chris Jones

Yes, they do. There are (I think) two reasons for this. First, there are still some places in the US (and a lot more places elsewhere) where cable-based broadband and DSL are simply not available. And second, broadband is still significantly more expensive than dial-up. I think we pay about $40/month for broadband access (I'm not sure because it's bundled with our TV service and voice-over-IP telephone service and I am not sure how the (obscenely large) monthly cost breaks down among the three services); while dial-up can be had for ten or fifteen dollars.

That's not a huge cost difference for a middle-class family with a steady job (or two, if the wife works as well); but for retired folks or anyone who hasn't made it into the middle class, it's enough to make a difference. If that steady job proves to be not so steady, you find yourself wondering just how important that broadband connection really is (been there, done that, got the T-shirt).

John H

My parents-in-law still have dial-up, because British Telecom won't be able to get broadband to their house until at least 2010.

I take your point about the expense of broadband and how straitened circumstances might make it look like an unaffordable luxury. But if times were hard and I was forced to choose between broadband and (say) running water... well... I'd need a few minutes to think about my decision. :-)

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