Why Have Cable?

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technomage1

Verified Member
Jan 5, 2015
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3,388
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#1
If this is inappropriate for the site, I'll take it down, just let me know. The article about Comcast today got me thinking.

With today's internet options for streaming TV (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc) and the cable companies long and well known history of poor customer service, I find myself stumped as to why anyone would pay for cable now. For $18 a month I get Hulu and Netflix, and along with my Amazon Prime membership ($99 a year) - which I have for the free shipping anyway - that covers pretty much any show I ever want to watch, plus a vast library of past shows. For the only sport i watch - hockey - NHL Gamecenter offers live and on demand games for $25 a month during hockey season. There are other services for other sports as well.

So for half the cost of a basic cable subscription I get a service I can cancel or put on vacation hold or cancel anytime with zero hassle. Some people I know alternate months between Hulu and Netflix with vacation holds that way, though I don't. But the services offer flexibility and customer service level that cable packages don't. Note we've never heard (to my knowledge) from an outraged Hulu or Netflix customer who can't cancel their service or got upsold or lied to because that's not possible with their service. You want to cancel, you go online and cancel. Done in 5 minutes.

I get some rural areas may have poor or nonexistent broadand options and satellite TV may be the only option there. Nor am I trying to critize anyone's choice. If you want cable, by all means get it. I just wonder if I'm missing some great benefit to cable, or if the options we have now may eventually be the death of cable.

Of course, ISPs like Verizon do offer TV packages with Internet now - when I had FIOS I got their TV package for $5 more a month so that's another economical option as well. It's entiely possible that most people are getting their cable this way now - and that's not a bad deal if you are going to get the Internet anyway. My current locations ISP choices are limited, and they charge out the nose for the addition of cable, so I go with what I've described.

So, does anyone out there have traditional cable and want to share why they have it and why it works for them or their thoughts on the subject?
 

mmb

Verified Member
Jan 20, 2015
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#2
I have cable because i have 3 TiVo's w/Lifetime subscriptions which I use to record a vast variety of network series TV shows. I can then transfer them to my laptop to take w/me when I travel which allows me to catch up on my backlog of shows.
I also have a Roku w/Netflix, private library of movies and ShowTime under my son's subscription.
Where in your selections can you see shows of Network series TV which is CURRENT. Where would you watch Downton Abbey, Scandal, Castle or any of these shows?
If I knew how to get these shows I would LOVE to cancel Comcast.
My son has told me I just need to learn to be a season behind but I don't like that option.
 
Likes: AAGK

technomage1

Verified Member
Jan 5, 2015
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#3
The shows you listed are on free television. Downton is on PBS and the other two, ABC. ABC also offers free episodes online if you miss it and they're on Hulu as well. Downton is $20 per season on Amazon if you miss it or live outside a PBS service area.

Even if you have to buy the occasional season of a show you must see you're coming out ahead.

And yes, they're current. I don't really keep track of how long after they air they're up, but the Castle episode that aired on the 16th is up now...but in any event you should be able to record them on your TiVo.
 
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mmb

Verified Member
Jan 20, 2015
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#4
aaaahhh, but i'm in one of those rural areas that doesn't get free tv. we all have to either use comcast/directv or a satelite dish....
 

technomage1

Verified Member
Jan 5, 2015
1,981
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#5
aaaahhh, but i'm in one of those rural areas that doesn't get free tv. we all have to either use comcast/directv or a satelite dish....
So get them on Hulu, online at the networks website, or pay for the occasional show like I noted. No need to pay for more than internet service. Is broadband available in your area?

As I noted in my original post, if you live in a rural area without broadband, then satellite TV may be your only option. But the areas without broadband are shrinking every year. You can check at http://www.broadbandmap.gov what ISPs offer service in your area. Even if it's only Comcast, you can still pay them only for Internet and not TV and still save money.
 
Jan 17, 2015
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#6
If you're out in the sticks, particularly with small, local telephone companies, there are FCC initiatives that can help ameliorate the costs of bringing broadband service to local consumers.

Our itty bitty phone co-op offered fiber access in town about 10 years ago. We're *way* out of town, but a couple of years ago, they brought fiber to our little pocket of houses. And one gig internet service for *way* less than the Big Boys want in the Big City 20 miles from here, who have been begging Google for fiber.
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#7
I was thinking about going to Internet service ($70), Hulu ($9), HBO to go ($15) & Netflix ($10) but then I wouldn't have the DVR to record shows. They would all be on-demand. I would have to write down my own personal TV Guide and refer back to that to pull my shows up.

I had to go with the $70 internet because of the area I live in. There are not many ISP's that service my area.

Then I saw a direct TV offer that brought me right inline with what I was planning on spending with the above scenario. And it offered a 2 year contract and came with DVR's.

When this plan expires I will reconsider my options, hoping that my area is serviced by more ISP's and/or at a lower cost.
 

AMA

Verified Member
Dec 11, 2014
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#8
I would be prfectly fine with no tv, except Turner Classic Movies does not exist in the internt except in very limited ways.

It's the only channel I watch. Edit: I have Amazon Prime and that has anything else that intrests me.

Sorry, e keyboard problms.
 

Michelle Friedman

Administrator
Staff Member
Director
Sep 19, 2015
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#10
I would love to get rid of my cable. My husband has forbid it because of MSNBC, CNN, cable sports events and local news. So I pay for cable and I pay for Netflix and we get Amazon Prime because of the shipping benefits. If we could pay separately for those stations and events I would quickly get rid of the burden of a big cable bill each month!
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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New York
www.promalvacations.com
#11
My stepdaughter got rid of her cable and went only to using the online options.

My wife went insane when she was down there staying with her daughter because there was absolutely no news on the t.v. thanks to not having cable. She had no idea what was going on in the world. She told me she had to read the local newspaper online to have a clue of what went on in the world. And the fact that her daughter lives in the backwoods of Virginia, the only local news in their newspaper was who got arrested for passing bad checks. No world news.

By the time my wife returned to babysit again, basic cable was back.
 
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jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
6,264
6,324
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San Francisco
#12
When I met my husband, I had never owned a television. I'd throw it all out the window now ... but the sports, the boy has to have his sports. And I do record a few shows for my own enjoyment. Between the Library and Netflix, the entertainment niche is filled; and the internet has all the information I've ever even thought of asking about.
 

kenish

Verified Member
Sep 1, 2015
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KSNA
#13
Cutting the cord: $70/mo to ditch 100 channels I don't watch and 3-4 I watch a only few hours weekly.

Antenna to get over-the-air signal: $90 one time

Getting together with friends, or mountain biking / hiking, or traveling, or researching a fascinating topic: Priceless ! :)
 
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Aug 28, 2015
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New York
#14
I would love to get rid of my cable. My husband has forbid it because of MSNBC, CNN, cable sports events and local news. So I pay for cable and I pay for Netflix and we get Amazon Prime because of the shipping benefits. If we could pay separately for those stations and events I would quickly get rid of the burden of a big cable bill each month!
I once called to cancel my wireless and premium channels bc I was annoyed that my partner wouldn't get off his computer. The next thing I know, Time Warner said to keep everything and it just wouldn't charge me for those services anymore (the cable part). The offer was too good to refuse. I would try this. Apparently removing this stuff is often more costly to the provider then just discounting your bill going forward.
I have also experienced this with my NYT subscription. I have been trying to cancel my digital one for a year but every time they come back with a great offer. This last time they told me to keep it for another 6 months for free.
 
Aug 29, 2015
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#15
Cutting the cord: $70/mo to ditch 100 channels I don't watch and 3-4 I watch a only few hours weekly.

Antenna to get over-the-air signal: $90 one time

Getting together with friends, or mountain biking / hiking, or traveling, or researching a fascinating topic: Priceless ! :)
We dropped to broadcast basic cable some time ago, but an antenna picks up nothing. The nap of the land and distance just prevents us from picking it up.
 
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