Ovation: GUEST POST – The Internet Has Made Things Cheaper.
I am a guy who well and truly existed before the internet pervaded our lives. Back then when I first got my email address, my parents didn’t think I required a computer at home. Neither did I. After all, the BASIC and LOTUS 1-2-3 programming practice could always be done with the black-and-white computers at school. I was told MailCity.com would shut my email account down if I didn’t login once in a three month period. So that got me to visit an internet browsing cafe once every three months simply to keep my account active.
How things have changed. Today, I make a living from the internet. I do my shopping online. I don’t get newspapers delivered to my doorstep any more. It’s been ages since I sent an actual greeting card to someone. Heck, I haven’t even visited my bank once in the last one year. Sure the internet has made things easier from the look of things. But what’s amazing is the way it has made things cheaper.
Remember how you would pick your shopping destination based on the newspaper coupons you had collected? Now things just got reversed. I not only browse through the price of the product I need at various online stores before picking a destination, I also make them cheaper by searching for coupons on my mobile or iPad. By the way, shopping online also means you get the product delivered to your doorstep instead of having to wait at the long queues at the cashier. I also save on fuel in the process.
As a kid growing up in India with cousins living in the United States, I remember how we never made a call from India to the US. It was always my cousins who called. I figured it was because international calls are expensive and it works a little cheaper in US dollars compared to the Indian rupee. Today, I have friends and family across five continents and it doesn’t matter who calls. It’s free over Skype anyway.
Entertainment is exactly where the internet has been at its disruptive best, and I am not even talking about piracy and torrents. YouTube has made it so easy to access music and videos from any point in time. Gone were the days when all that one could do to feel nostalgic was to reminisce the great music you listened to as a child. Today, one search on YouTube can help you play the music you loved as a child. The internet has become a platform for movie distribution and if you are someone who doesn’t enjoy going to movie theaters, why not simply buy it online and watch it at home? It is much cheaper this way.
There are a whole lot of other things that have got cheaper as well. I do not visit the doctor any more for simple ailments like a headache or a viral. I google my symptoms to understand the cause. This is of course dangerous and definitely not recommended. But hey, who hasn’t googled their symptoms before making an appointment with a doctor? It definitely gives you a better understanding of your ailments.
The internet has made things cheaper and offers an easier platform to do things. And as someone who must have saved hundreds of dollars by simply moving his purchasing habits online, I couldn’t be happier.
Author Bio: Anand Srinivasan is a software developer by day and a blogger by night. He loves traveling.
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