Why I Don't Like Subscriptions

22 December, 2020

Why I Hate Subscriptions

> (Me): Hey Google, play Taylor Swift songs.
> (Google Home): Choosing songs is only available to Spotify Premium subscribers.

Today almost all consumer services are based on a subscription model. On average, Amazon Prime members shop about 25 times annually while non-Prime members 14 times a year. It's a proven model to trick consumers to consume more and regularly. Now think about why Netflix doesn't offer a plan for a day or one movie. When you pay a flat fee, you don't control the consumption and naturally consume more.

To gain financial independence, one should do quite the opposite - producing a passive income (more on that in 2021). Monthly subscriptions make it harder to leave 9-to-5 jobs to start your own business.

I have been doing what Pavel Durov recently wrote about: consuming less and producing more. I highly recommend reading it if you already haven't.

When I needed a localhost tunneling service, instead of subscribing to Ngrok's monthly plan, I built one myself, now many other people are using it too.
And instead of subscribing to Spotify premium to listen to songs on my Google Home, I am building an app for Google Assistant using MusicSpider's API and giving a talk at a conference on that topic.

For the exact same reason, I built my own blog website instead of writing on Medium, sick and tired of Medium's banner to sign up for a subscription.

For a developer, any premium feature is an opportunity for a side project. Although it may not be as popular or as successful, it's a great experience and an excuse not to pay for the subscription.