From Brian X. Chen's "The True Cost of Upgrading Your Phone" in Thursday's New York Times:
Let’s talk about buying an iPhone for $1,000. Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, once compared this eye-popping price tag to buying a cup of coffee a day over a year. No big deal, right?
But financial advisers see this differently. By some estimates, an investment of $1,000 in a retirement account today would balloon to about $17,000 in 30 years.
In other words, $700 to $1,000 — the price range of modern smartphones — is a big purchase. Fewer than half of American adults have enough savings set aside to cover three months of emergency expenses, according to the Pew Research Center. Yet one in five people surveyed by the financial website WalletHubthought a new phone was worth going into debt for...
The irony of Mr. Cook’s coffee analogy isn’t lost on Suze Orman, the financial adviser who once famously equated people’s coffee habits to “peeing $1 million down the drain.” The seemingly small amount of money that people mindlessly spend on java — and now phone upgrades — could be a path to poverty, she said.
“Do you need a new one every single year?” asked Ms. Orman, who hosts the “Women and Money” podcast. “Absolutely not. It’s just a ridiculous waste of money.”
My take: What are we supposed to do for the next three decades, drink tea and use Androids?