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Neal Augenstein, wtop.com
WASHINGTON – If you pay the bills, you know your smartphone is a money pit.
Not even counting apps or accessories, you are paying more and more to use and enjoy the ever-growing number of things possible on cellphones.
And that’s causing many families to cut back on other things to feed their smartphone habits.
Labor Department data released this week shows spending on phone services rose more than 4 percent last year, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Wireless carriers working to develop faster network speeds are reaping the benefits of increased data usage.
Surfing the net, streaming video and playing games chews up data, for which customers usually pay.
Families with more than one smartphone can easily pay $4,000 yearly, far more than they pay for cable and home Internet.
The Labor Department figures show Americans spent $116 more on phones last year than they did in 2007.
It appears people are reducing spending on other items to compensate for what they’re spending on their phones.
The amount spent on dining out fell by $48 a year, clothes spending dropped by $141 and entertainment spending dropped by $126, according to the Labor Department report.
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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)
Photos and stories by the Associated Press from 70 years ago this week.