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Spartan Scoop

Spartan Scoop

Inform · Connect · Entertain

Spartan Scoop

RAPIDLY RISING TECH PRICES

I just want a new headset
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Apple Logo

Technology is a necessity of daily life; from the phone in your pocket to the car you drive in, tech is everywhere. Unfortunately it’s also so expensive for all of this it’s mind boggling. Especially considering things are supposed to become cheaper the more infrastructure is in place to create said products. But logic isn’t needed where we’re going.

 

Apple stands out as an example of this trend. They are known for creating expensive products. Recently, they unveiled the iPhone 15 which featured no significant improvement from its predecessors. Starting at $800, the iPhone 15 made headlines when it supported USB 2, an early 2000s technology with speeds reminiscent of those years. Although its camera received upgrades in terms of quality, other features remained virtually unchanged. Surprisingly, this latest iteration retailed for $100 more than the iPhone 14 – making it even harder for customers to justify the additional expense.

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For an actual improvement to the Apple product experience, you need to get the “pro” or “pro max” models. The latter of these costs $1200 which could get you a fairly impressive gaming pc. Don’t forget that every other phone company has started to do the same thing because Apple got away with it. 

Like why is the touchpad the only way to open the glove compartment on the new Cadillac.

GPUs(Graphic Processing Unit) are vital parts of almost any piece of technology, and the ones for PC’s have greatly increased in price. Demand has skyrocketed due to AI companies buying up GPUs for machine learning needs – driving up demand even further. But it’s not just the ones designed for that but even gaming GPUs. Unfortunately, gaming GPUs weren’t intended to handle such intense workloads, leading to supply shortages as they attempt quantity over quality. This tells companies like Nvidia that there is no pressing need to reduce prices more affordably as these GPUs continue selling out at premium prices; gamers become trapped in an endless cycle of high prices and scarcity, further exacerbating this problem further.

 

However, rising gaming prices don’t just affect GPUs. Look at Xbox Series S/X consoles which rely on proprietary memory cards made by Seagate. They have their prices set absurdly high as they’re the only retailer. At least Sony didn’t make people get proprietary cards from them, but you still need expensive SSD’s to expand the storage. Even basic accessories like charging bricks have become expensive over the past several years; many smartphones no longer include them and force consumers to purchase separate fast charging bricks in order to enjoy modern speeds.

 

When it comes to headphones, however, the situation becomes even more dismal. If you wish to use wired headphones with modern smartphones, a $12 adapter must first be purchased. Name-brand Bluetooth headphones usually cost at least $100 while more cost-conscious options start from at least $25 with average sound quality. Gaming headsets are even more ridiculous because they have two components that need to be looked at: audio quality and mic quality. Alternatively you can also just spend over 100 dollars on an external mic so you don’t have to look at mic quality.

 

Speaking of gaming tech, don’t forget controllers. You’re spending at least $70 for a controller made by the company. Somehow Nintendo joy cons retail for $80, despite the fact they have very poor build quality and less features than the rest. At least the Nintendo “pro” controller is set at a more reasonable $70 like the rest. A little piece of advice for anyone looking to get a third party controller, your best bet is going to be powerA for xbox. I don’t recommend trying to get a third party controller on Sony unless you want to spend close to $200 for a “pro” controller.

 

I mean game companies are even making the full console experience at least 100 dollars more. A prime example of this is the Series X/S, where the S is so much weaker than the X that it struggles to play some modern games, to the point where it feels like it’s just a trap for people who don’t pay attention to the specs of a console. Devs of major games like Control and Baldur’s Gate 3 have even said it holds back their games because they have to accommodate the significantly weaker Series S. However this doesn’t just affect developers as the games also run much worse in comparison to the Series X. 

 

Here’s one thing people don’t think about for the tech field: cars. Cars have so much technology that they are a nightmare to self maintenance. Don’t forget that some of them are even planning or even already charging a subscription to even use built in features like seat heaters. At least BMW realized how idiotic this was and decided to not charge for a built in feature. You’d be disgusted to see how expensive new cars already are.

 

It’s not just that companies are charging a lot for tech, but they’re shoving in unnecessary features so they can have an excuse to ramp up the price. The favorite for new cars is touchpads built into the car. The touch pads also have features in them they shouldn’t. Like why is the touchpad the only way to open the glove compartment on the new Cadillac. Unnecessary changes like these only hurts our wallet, especially since it’s one that no one asked for. 

 

Apple yet again comes in strong with the useless feature on the new apple watch, which has little changes from the previous models. Apple “added” a double pinch feature as one of their major features, but it’s not new and the older models could still do it. Not only is it more expensive, but it really isn’t even much different that the previous models.

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Overall tech has been on a rise in cost when even accounting for inflation. These nonstop rises in technology have just made it harder for the consumer to upgrade to new products. Guess until people stop overpaying for tech, I’ll still be using the same headset that I really should replace.

About the Contributor
Matt Allen, Reporter
LEEEEEEEEEROOOOYYYY JEEEEENKINNNS