Online services I pay for

I currently pay for the following online services.


  • What: regular TV on iPad.
  • Why: for in bed & on couch - less hot/cumbersome than laptop and can put on while using laptop.
  • Love: portability; queue (though you get that with regular Hulu).
  • Hate: some shows still Web only; has ads; endless buffering.


  • What: daily newspaper on the iPad.
  • Why: initially bc sister works there (graphic designer), but now bc it is fun to read before going to bed at night.
  • Love: UX, i.e. nice browsing and readability features; good graphics.
  • Hate: can't go back to older issues since I don't pick it up every day.



  • What: 3-way video calling.
  • Why: hate going to meetings in person.
  • Love: way more personal phone.
  • Hate: often peoples' Internet connections aren't fast enough.


  • What: free, two-day shipping on many Amazon products (no minimum, overnight for $3.99).
  • Why: going to the store is a hassle.
  • Love: shipping is so fast (often just one day).
  • Hate: how much stuff on Amazon is not prime-able.


  • What: online email.
  • Why: solved my Gmail issues (slowness, sending limits).
  • Love: 2-step authentication (though can get that on regular Gmail).
  • Hate: can't add free (lower) accounts once paid for higher ones; switching between accounts a pain.


  • What: online code repository.
  • Why: easy private collaboration; could use my servers, but it has issues built in and don't have to share credentials/resources.
  • Love: easy segmented collaboration.
  • Hate: dealing with pull requests.


  • What: Internet-based home phone.
  • Why: free after you buy device
  • Love: subscribed to premium for emailed voicemail and automatic blacklist detection.
  • Hate: faxing doesn't work well.

  • What: online fax.
  • Why: my home fax doesn't work very well.
  • Love: easy.
  • Hate: feels expensive.


Amazon Web Services.gif

  • What: cloud services.
  • Why: initially wanted easy failover and scaling capacity; now run as primary host.
  • Love: spin up new nodes in minutes.
  • Hate: dealing with EBS issues; instances fail more than (I think) they should.


  • What: virtual (shared) servers.
  • Why: shared development resource.
  • Love: cheap, root access, no bs.
  • Hate: larger plans expensive.

dns made easy.png

  • What: managed DNS.
  • Why: speed, uptime, built-in monitoring, failover and global traffic redirection.
  • Love: just works, cheap, great support.
  • Hate: web interface is a bit clunky/confusing.


  • What: web site monitoring.
  • Why: external notifications when things go down.
  • Love: response time reports (from around the world).
  • Hate: expensive; will prob let expire since I have three other monitors now.


  • What: server monitoring.
  • Why: gives alerts when on-server things go awry.
  • Love: Android notifications; alert types (exact process, system resources); great support.
  • Hate: new alerts don't remember your default (usual) settings. 

Jungle Disk.gif

  • What: online backup.
  • Why: peace of mind.
  • Love: can do network drives; set and forget; can use own S3/rackspace credentials if desired.
  • Hate: nothing, though thinking of moving my music files to Amazon for the streaming ability.

Full disclosure: amazon, DNSMadeEasy, Linode, Ooma, Hulu links above have embedded affiliate codes (and in some cases discounts). Just did that for the fun of it (don't really expect/care if I made $5 or whatever).

Update: there are some good comments on HN about other services people pay for.

Update2: there are more good comments on Lifehacker.


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