"I'm assuming this is for starting wood fires? Do none of you have resinous trees where you hike?"
Yes this is for starting wood fires, sorry, should have noted in the OP. Yes, I have plenty of resinous trees where I hike. But, I also have lots of rain, dew, mist, and water in general where I hike too. When it is dry out, and I have the time/energy, I won't use any brought firestarter, and just stick to birch bark and/or dried pine needles and such. On other occasions of either damp conditions or lack of time/energy, then having a firestarter is a nice alternative. I would say it's about a 50/50 ratio of using my wax rolls vs. just natural stuff.
I am into bushcraft too, so just to challenge myself, I have actually started a fire under difficult conditions. Once without any matches or lighter using a bow drill, which was fairly difficult, and took like 2 hours from start to finish--gathering and prepping all the materials, making the components, trial and error, etc. Last year in early April, after it has been raining for several days, including on the morning I set out, I started a fire using only my knife and a fire striker. Took over an hour, but I got the dang thing going. Feather sticks are big help.
Oh, and I looked on youtube for cotton ball with p. jelly burn times, and got mixed results. Mostly around 2 or 3 minutes, but I was surprised to find one that lasted for a little over 6 minutes. This has to mean that some people soak the cotton balls with more fuel. Makes me wonder how much fuel a cotton ball can absorb.
For cost, over all efficiency, and less mess I will stick to wax rolls.