10 Gadgets That Really Should Be Obsolete By Now


Dial-up Internet

Surely if you had any sort of choice, you’d ditch dial-up.  ©Comstock/Stockbyte/Thinkstock
Surely if you had any sort of choice, you’d ditch dial-up. ©Comstock/Stockbyte/Thinkstock

In the United States, around 3 percent of people still use dial-up services to access the Internet. By contrast, nearly 70 percent have high-speed broadband access [source: Kessler]. Their online experiences are, shall we say, profoundly different.

When you're connected via a quality broadband connection, you're able to stream audio and video to multiple HDTVs and your computer at the same time, while you're also surfing on your tablet and smartphone. By contrast, if you're stuck on a dial-up connection, sometimes it takes several seconds for a single web page to load in your browser.

Holding onto dial-up may even cost you potential income. More than one set of researchers has found higher earning potential in households that have broadband Internet access as compared with those that still use whistling, buzzing modem [source: The Garside].

Those people tend to be older, less educated and living in homes with lower than average incomes [source: Pew]. They also may be in areas (like rural hideaways) where access options are extremely limited. Regardless of circumstances, dial-up Internet is a throwback, and not one we want to use again.