Tag: value

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My Tidal Time Ends

As explained yesterday, Google Store Father’s Day sale specials spurred along my decision to abandon Apple for Pixel devices and supporting services, nothing more. I had contemplated such a move for some time before acting, which brings me to revealing another change: Leaving behind Tidal.

I have subscribed to the high-fi, lossless music streaming service since its rebranded launch under Jay Z (and partners) ownership: April 1, 2015. A few other times I cancelled, mainly because of monthly cost ($19.95), but resubscribed during the billing cycle. Why? I can hear the difference, particularly in vocals, which pulled me back. Every other option makes muddy audio. But I have finally decided to, regrettably, put value before fidelity. 

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Google Music tempts Me from Tidal

My love affair with Tidal nears dissolution. The second month’s renewal is five days away, and divorce is nearly certain now. Mid-month I asked: “What Good is Tidal HiFi if Content won’t Play?” Matters are better and worse since. I no longer have the song stalls in the webapp running from Chrome OS. But track jumping behavior now afflicts Nexus 6—not just its tablet sibling.

On the phablet late this morning, I switched over to Google Music for a quick refresher comparison between identical tracks. I most certainly can hear the difference between 320kbps MP3 and Tidal’s 1411kbps Free Lossless Audio Codec. But the aural benefits are valueless if I can’t listen. Google Music invited me to resubscribe, with half a year free; it’s some kind of promotion for Nexus 6 buyers. How could I refuse no billing until after Thanksgiving? November feels forever away. 

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You Could Buy So Much More Than Apple Watch

As Apple Watch hype increases and the preorder date (April 10) approaches, a question gnaws me: Why would anyone spend so much money on the device? A buying poll I posted on BetaNews now exceeds 1,000 responses, which is large enough sample-size to get some sense of the readership’s intentions. Two percent of respondents—that’s 14 people—plan to buy the Edition model, which price ranges from $10,000 to $17,000. No disrespect, but talk about money to burn! Forty-five percent of respondents plan to purchase any Apple Watch, while another 5 percent of you are undecided.

So I wonder: What could you buy instead of Apple Watch? I intentionally single out the big spenders, settling on $13,000 as mean between $10K and $17K, being it’s such a lucky number and Apple looks to make lots of luck—eh, money—from the smartwatch. Before continuing, an important reminder: Functionally, there is no difference between the cheapo timepiece ($349) and its massively-expensive sibling. The price difference is all bling. 

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No Wonder Free is the Expected Cost

Last month, I read frighteningly insightful analysis “How the Internet Killed Profit“. Ah yeah. Facilitated in part by the Google free economy, many things that were profitable suddenly aren’t.  There’s little financial gain giving away valuable content. Free isn’t necessarily bad, just a myth—the great Internet lie that reinforces the justification no one needs to pay for anything.

But as I explained five years ago in post “The Problem with Free“: “Free and the Internet go oddly together, and not necessarily well together…People will pay for anything for which there is perceived or actual value. Free is an acceptable price when there is perceived or actual value”. Pay or free are the same because value matters more. The 2009 analysis responded to Chris Anderson’s assertion that on the Internet “free really can be free”. He is misguided. 

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When Less Means Spending More

Over the weekend, I picked up a new computer for my wife. She had used a Dell Dimension PC for about a year and half and could have continued doing so. But she’s not as computer savvy as my fourth grader or me. Increasingly concerned about viruses and spyware, I had long considered moving her off a Windows XP PC and onto a Mac. Since I’m giving up my main domain and she was losing her e-mail address, I reasoned now was the right time for the Mac. She would get a new computer and .Mac e-mail address.

Ideally, a $799 eMac should have suited her needs. With a 1GHz PowerPC G4 processor, 256MB of RAM, 40GB hard drive, and DVD/CD-RW combo drive, the computer packed plenty more power than she needed for her main activities of doing e-mail and surfing the Web. For $200 more, I could have set her up with a faster processor, 20GB more storage, and a DVD burner. What’s not to like?