In this day in age, we are all connected. Connected to social media and thus the world, connected to our phones which house multiple ways to connect, which are then connected to the world wide web where all of these connections are housed. To further matters we have now started to connect our phones to devices we wear to track or productive we are each day. Or to a watch that does everything your phone does, but in a more convenient size.
These wearable devices have never been of any desire to me. I don’t need my phone to tell me how unfit I am, nor my bracelet. But let’s talk just a minute about the advancements that have been made in getting our televisions connected. Or maybe I should just say our program viewing connected and therefore hugely broadened. We can now go online with our TV. I know what you’re thinking, this is no new news. I am fully aware of that, but it is fairly new to me.
Let Me Explain:
See, until a little over a year ago I lived in the country. Living in the country is great. You could yell and not worry about your neighbors hearing you, you could allow your kids to pee outside and no one would see. You could go a little extra time between cutting your grass and no one would care. You never had to worry about any drop-by company because nobody was ever in the area so letting the household chores go a little was okay too. In October in this small town, the kids roll yards for fun. Most parents are okay with it and I am too. But let me tell you when we lived in the country we NEVER had to worry about getting rolled. Nobody was coming all the way out there to do it.
There was little to no cell phone coverage there either. I remember when we first got the PS4 we had to take it to town to my husband’s work just to download updates and the free game that came with it. And even inside the city limits, at that time, the internet was slow. I’m talkin’ “leave it there overnight to download” kinda slow. So naturally, when we finally moved to town the very first thing I wanted to do was play an online game which I had waited forever to be released that I still couldn’t play because it was entirely online. I thought it was so ridiculous before we moved. Why would any company make its fans who aren’t fortunate enough to live somewhere that the internet isn’t a given? So yes, I let go of my ill feelings about that situation and played hours upon hours of this game as soon as our home was connected.
Then I discovered something else, connected television. Oh, my goodness!!! I knew I watched more than the average person before we moved. This was because we really didn’t have anything else to do. At least, that is how I justified it. But now, I think we may be taking things to a whole other level. We have two internet providers. One is only 6mbps, but I have it bundled into my tv package and after much finagling, it is the same price per month that I paid for tv only. The other is a smaller company, but they offer 24mbps.
So here’s how this plays out. The 6mbps is the kids’ internet. They use their PlayStation for gaming and streaming and it is also the only one they even have the password to the wifi for. The 24mbps is ours. We stream our tv with it and our wifi is on it as well. Unless the kids aren’t here. Then we live like the rest of the world and have really decent wifi with our phones connected to one and streaming with the other. At what point do I decide that we pay far too much to stay connected? If you factor in our cell phone bill we pay more than most people’s car payment on a brand new car. It’s insane really. And it’s all for streaming. It’s all in a hope to not have to see the dreaded “buffering” circle come up on our television screen and halt our binge watching.
I wonder how many other families can watch the entire new season of their favorite Netflix show in one weekend. Or worse, three seasons or more. Does everyone else fork out all of this money for Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime, Directv, and the proper equipment to run it all? I think myself a saver on things like groceries and always say we have to save money where we can until it comes to being connected. I would go broke maintaining that.
Maybe it is because my body doesn’t allow me to do much these days. Maybe I can blame this too on my rare disease. Maybe I’m blaming too much on the aforementioned disease. Who knows? I don’t intend to figure it out because I like my connected television too much. Nobody can take that away from me.