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Wireless Carriers

Smartphones: Like cigarettes, only better

Pop Quiz: What fits in your pocket, annoys others not partaking, is addictive, and costs more every day?If you answered cigarettes, you’re right. But another correct answer is smartphones.We’re not the first ones  to make this comparison. But from an investment point of view, it’s useful.The similarities between smartphones and cigarettes came to mind recently. I was reading a Wall Street Journal  article  describing that while the conventional wisdom is that aggressive competitive moves by T-Mobile (( TMUS )) and Sprint (( S )) ought to be driving prices down, mobile-phone bills continue to climb. According to the story, the average monthly revenue per postpaid user across the U.S. wireless-service industry has climbed from $55.80 in the first quarter of 2010 to $61.15 at the end of 2013. That’s a nearly 10% increase.What other technology-based service or product has risen in price during that time? Cable TV? Nope, going down with “cord cutters.” Tablets? Not with Samsung (( SSNLF )) ...

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