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Old 03-13-2015, 08:38 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by utrecht View Post
I dont know how Sirius stays in business. Pandora and iHeart Raido are free and much better (as long as you have an aux jack or blue tooth in your car).
We dropped our subscription this year because we can get streaming to our iOS devices plugged into our vehicle radios. So far that streaming is free and covered under our cell bandwidth allowance.

Sirius/XM are too expensive compared to the Internet streaming models.
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Old 03-13-2015, 08:45 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by JoeWras View Post
Is anyone else getting tired of companies trying to jam a subscription model down your throat?

Seems like about a decade ago, the MBAs discovered that the best way to squeeze both customers and businesses is through a subscription model. No more buy once and forget.

Sure, this has been around forever with "razors and blades", or more recently, "printers and cartridges." But I'm talking a new, closer level of interaction. Monthly or yearly fees, whether you want them or not.

Pick your poison:
- Amazon Prime
- Costco membership
- Google play
- iTunes
- Netflix
- Turbotax
- Quicken (3 yrs now, what's next?)
- Satellite radio
- Dollar shave club, or new guy, Bevel
- Mobile phones
- Termite inspections
- Prepaid auto repair
- Grass service
- Water softener service
- Furnace service

The newest one I got was from Terminix. They called me up and wanted to know when they could schedule my "attic inspection." I'm like, "What attic inspection?" Apparently, they are just trying to get people on an attic inspection yearly service. I inspect my attic myself, once per quarter, thank you very much. Don't need your guy to pop in with his flashlight.

And about those furnace/ac inspections. I think there is a lot of fear here that they employ. Yes, it is not a bad idea to get a pro to check every few years, maybe every 5. But keep CO monitors in your house regardless. You can inspect and clean much of what they do anyway. And from what I saw from a "complementary" service I got when my unit was only 6 months old, I was horrified. The guy disabled all the safeties to "test the safeties". This heated up the heat exchanger to red hot. I don't think that is good for the system! Not the right way to test!

Now I'm off topic. But it just seems like some new recurring charge is popping up in my life and I'm not happy about it.
and the rest of the people want you to take a survey
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:09 AM   #43
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My favorite was "Slacker." You would purchase a proprietary MP3 player; one that Slacker would download your music to when an Internet connection was available. You could than play the music without access to cell tower or Hot Spot. This was good when driving in areas with no (or spotty) cell service... or boondocking back in the woods. We went for three days once without service and never heard the same song twice. Then when we got back to civilization a whole new set of songs were installed.

Aw, but alas. The device had a non-replaceable battery (required even if plugged in) and when it came time to replace, Slacker changed its service to be more like Pandora. (They still -- five years later -- have not gotten their act together.) FWIW: Slacker Radio Stations | Free Internet Radio | Slacker Radio

I, therefore, have to use my cell phone as a MP3 player when on the road and the car radio when in big cities. Rarely do I use Pandora and Spotify on the road but use them all the time at the stick house... along with KUVO.ORG and WWOZ.ORG.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:24 AM   #44
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and the rest of the people want you to take a survey
I just sent a note to Marriott (through the Web site, not to their No-Reply e-mail) and told them to stop bugging me with surveys every time I stay in one of their properties. I always add a review to TripAdvisor because I value the information I get when I'm planning travel. What do I get for filling out a survey from Marriott or Hilton? Nothing- not even 500 lousy loyalty program points.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:57 AM   #45
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and the rest of the people want you to take a survey
Oh no, my other pet peeve!

Surveys are veiled marketing devices. I skip most of them.

Speaking of recurring issues. I cannot stop the Red Cross from bothering me about donations. I've tried, but they persist. But here's the thing: I give every 8 to 12 weeks religiously. I call them. But it isn't enough. They want to call me.

I think it is time to go to my local blood bank and skip ARC They are not getting the message. I don't want their calls!

And maybe that is the root of it. Too many people wanting to call me and sign me up. To Midpack, who told me to say "NO". I did say "NO" to the Red Cross this morning. I should be happy, right? Nope, because she just kept talking, so I had to hang up on her too. I guess that is the part II. Ignore them.
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Old 03-13-2015, 10:16 AM   #46
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And maybe that is the root of it. Too many people wanting to call me and sign me up. To Midpack, who told me to say "NO". I did say "NO" to the Red Cross this morning. I should be happy, right? Nope, because she just kept talking, so I had to hang up on her too. I guess that is the part II. Ignore them.
I don't disagree, it's just harder to say no to some organizations than others, and I am not suggesting it isn't very annoying in some cases. I am willing to be more stubborn than any organization that's bugged me so far.

I used to give to St Jude Childrens Hospital regularly (a very worth cause IMO), but they wouldn't stop "soliciting" us far too frequently. I warned them several times and sadly we stopped giving to them as a result, never resumed.

I used to be a customer of West Marine, but they would not stop sending me catalogs and excessive junk mail. It took three mild but firm confrontations with them, they'd stop and then resume after weeks/months. Ultimately I cancelled my membership/quit buying from them to make them to stop. There are plenty of other providers who will sell to me without burying me in useless junk mail.

There are local charities I give to regularly, but I refuse to even give them my name - I don't care about charitable giving tax deductions anymore. I get to help them, but they never bother me (obviously).

I am sympathetic to your views, I guess I am just more determined than they are and subscriptions, surveys, etc. are minor annoyances in the overall scheme of things IMO...
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Old 03-13-2015, 12:23 PM   #47
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We dropped our subscription this year because we can get streaming to our iOS devices plugged into our vehicle radios. So far that streaming is free and covered under our cell bandwidth allowance.

Sirius/XM are too expensive compared to the Internet streaming models.
I used to be a big fan of SiriusXm but after a while, the value wasn't there for me. Now, I am able to DOWNLOAD songs from Amazon Prime Music to my phone and stream it via Bluetooth in the car...all without using my cell data plan (which is good since I use Ting and try to limit my data use). Also, since adding Amazon TV, I am able to use Amazon Music through my entertainment system. For me, Amazon Prime is about the best subscription plan available. Also, for every package that is *guaranteed* to be delivered in two days and isn't, I get a free month.

As for the subscription plan on software, I think this will become more and more prevalent. Folks like me will run software into the ground before upgrading...Windows XP is still my favorite OS yet isn't really supported anymore. If the software developers get people on a subscription plan, then the good old days of keeping software for YEARS will be over. Of course, there are things like Google Docs that make it "free" and you can avoid the subscription plans.
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Old 03-13-2015, 12:48 PM   #48
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I used to be a big fan of SiriusXm but after a while, the value wasn't there for me. Now, I am able to DOWNLOAD songs from Amazon Prime Music to my phone and stream it via Bluetooth in the car...all without using my cell data plan (which is good since I use Ting and try to limit my data use). Also, since adding Amazon TV, I am able to use Amazon Music through my entertainment system. For me, Amazon Prime is about the best subscription plan available. Also, for every package that is *guaranteed* to be delivered in two days and isn't, I get a free month.
I need to look into the Amazon music. Didn't know you could download like that. Man, this w*rk thing is cramping my style! No time!

I loved XM back in the day. And it was a good value. Now the only thing I like are the countdown shows on 60s, 70s, 80s on the weekend. Sirius changed the programming formula and it stinks. Might as well make use of that $99 to Amazon and drop XM. (BTW, just charged my card with the new fee last week. Ouch.)
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Old 03-14-2015, 12:39 AM   #49
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I already have an extensive collection shared across all my iOS device, any of which can be plugged into the car stereo. In fact the car has it's own iPod - a little square one that you can't get anymore. It holds all my music!

I found that on my common XM channels I never seemed to hear anything new.

I got a refund for part of the year, and now this is available for buying Internet streaming content!
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:25 AM   #50
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In fact the car has it's own iPod - a little square one that you can't get anymore. It holds all my music!
Both our cars have SD card slots in them for music.

It's pretty easy to dump a bunch of mp3 (or m4a) files on to a card and pop it in there.
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