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What if Owning a Home was Like Owning Quicken Software?

I opened up my Quicken 2006 Software today to catch up on reconciling some bank statements, and downloading credit card charges and stock account info. I was greeted with this message:

After April 30, you will no longer be able to access the following through Quicken 2006:
– Downloads of your bank, credit card, credit union, or investment account transactions.
– Online bill pay activity, stock quotations, news headlines and technical support.

How you can stay connected:
To continue using online services, you need to upgrade to Quicken 2009….Click the “Buy Now” button and follow the online prompts.

In other words, the Quicken software I purchased and own has expired. I must either decide to make due with a crippled version with which I must now hand enter all my transactions, or succumb to the extortion known in the software industry as the “forced upgrade”.

What if our future homes work this way? In 20 years everything will be computerized in new homes. What if one day, on the third anniversary of purchasing your new home, you pull into the driveway, activate your garage door remote, and a sweet female voice comes on through your on-board auto/home information system informing you.

After April 30, you will no longer be able to access the following features and functionality of your home:
– Garage door remote operation.
– Automatic sprinkler system.
– Central air and Heat system.
– Commode in the guest bath.
– Hot water.

How you can continue using the features and functionality of your home:
To continue using your home comfort features, you need to upgrade to Home Convenience Package 2030.1.b. Press the $ button on your control panel and an operator will be happy to take your credit card information and reinstate the desired features of your home.

I can imagine the screaming in the house from upstairs: “Dad, there’s no hot water and the toilet won’t flush”. And Dad will turn to wife, “For crying out loud Marge, I thought you were going to call and upgrade to the Premium Plumbing 8.0 Hot and Happy service package!”.

Then of course, with that new package you’ll be forced to get rid of your 3 year old water heater and purchase a new, more efficient model, even though the old one still works just fine.
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Posted by Steve
9 years ago