Is 5GB of mobile broadband a month enough for most people?

First off:
1024 bytes = 1 KB (kilobyte)
1024 KB = 1 MB (megabyte)
1024 MB = 1 GB (gigabyte)
1024 GB = 1 TB (terabyte)

It’s hard to peg the average size of a web page (so, one person’s profile on Facebook, for example). Easy to say a range between 80 and 300 KB. (This is an interesting page: Average Web Page Size Triples Since 2003.)

Very broad and arbitrary size ranges for other kinds of files:

Photos found on the internet: 100 KB – 2 MB
Higher-resolution images: 2 – 15 MB.
Song files run between 2 – 15 MB.
A half-hour of video, maybe 150 – 175 MB.
A 90-minute movie, 500 MB – 1 GB

So, to the question:

5GB is fine for phones with internet (c.f. articles 1 & 2).

On a computer, however, 5GB may or may not be fine (c.f. article 3 is from a geekier perspective).

I go waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay past 5 GB a month. I ain’t even going to guess a number. If you only look at static web pages — ones with no videos — and nobody sends you emails with pictures or videos in them, and you don’t download any music or audio-visual material… you likely won’t hit 5GB.

Here’s the important question for your carrier: Is there a way to monitor how much you’ve used up to the current moment in the billing cycle?

1. Beta News: Sprint says 5 GB per month should be enough for most

2. Yahoo! Answers: Is 5GB enough for a normal use on a laptop for broadband access using a USB Card?

3. Buzz Out Loud Lounge: Would 5 GB be enough for you?

A rare prediction

I’ve been reading books on the iPhone with the free Stanza application. And right after I heard about this excellent program, Amazon purchased Stanza, and the guess is that it intends to replace its own Kindle reader for iPhone with Stanza.
I was surprised at how much I enjoyed reading on the iPhone. Because one can change the font, the font size, the font color, the background color, and even the margins of the page, it’s an experience far superior to, say, reading an article on a web page in Mobile Safari.

While Amazon’s new version of the Kindle is selling way better than the original model, it now seems to me a fair bet that Apple has already been playing with this idea. And so, while I never like to try to guess Apple’s plans — and certainly never to bank on them — I’m going to officially throw in with all the folks who are assuming that Apple will announce some form of media tablet this summer. I think they’re even going to get into selling eBooks, although it would seem smart of them to get in bed with Amazon on that deal.

All of this gives me high hopes for the publishing industry, which has suffered greatly in recent years. I also hope that electronic distribution will save authors and publishers from the chains of the big book retailers such as Barnes & Ignoble and Borders, who have had a chokehold on the industry for too long. Unfortunately, small bookstores will get probably even more screwed in the process.