I grew up around the millennium. Back then CDs, tapes and Windows ME were omnipresent. If I wanted new music I had to drive to a shop and get it. If I wanted to build a website, I had the choice to either learn HTML or use Dreamweaver.
Today, everything is so much easier. SaaS products make our lives easier. Spotify gives me music on the go. WordPress … love it.
But it’s getting increasingly harder to keep track of all your subscriptions. Especially since trials are everywhere. The other day I figured I paid for a service I did not use because I forgot about the trial.
And I am pretty sure this is not just my problem. So how can we keep enjoying modern life with subscriptions, trials and demos everywhere, but still keep everything under control?
Let’s call it “Subscription Buddy”, a service that helps you keep track of all the commitments you get into. Subscription Buddy hooks up with your e-mails, maybe even your bank account and registers all the welcome e-mails, subscription or payment notifications. It matches everything with your payments, just in case, and notifies you when you really pay for a service.
“S.B.” can also be a plugin, who registers when you signup for a service. It records all the subscription periods and can recognise if it is a trial or not. It lets you manage all your subscriptions and notifies you when one is about to expire. So you can cancel or prolong it actively. You will never be surprised again.
If you are not happy with a subscription, Subscription Buddy can write a refund email automatically. If you don’t need that Spotify anymore, it can even unsubscribe you automatically.
Letting it hook up with Google Voice, Alexa or Siri makes it your own personal virtual subscription assistant.
Yes, basically there is a way to keep track of that. But that usually involves manual labour, conscious decisions and time to actually set reminders. An automation, a bot so to say, is a much better and more reliable choice.