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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,952

    Dumped the cable

    Actually I dumped AT&T Uverse tv - still have the internet. I did like it, and enjoyed the DVR, but I finally realized that almost everything I watch I can get on either NetFlix or Hulu...then I found a wireless internet video streaming device that works with both services and my Bravia tv...and pulled the trigger and plug

    I've spent most of my adult life without cable and it felt quite freeing to do this. I can still get weather and news on the internet and as it turns out, there are quite a lot of services available to me through this device. I have three free months with Hulu, and a free month of Netflix, but even if I were paying for both it would be less than a third of what I was paying for AT&T Uverse.

    More money for bike stuff and more time for productive things - like riding, hiking, reading, and needlework

    I thought that this might be of interest to someone else who might be considering the same thing. Of course you need a decent internet speed to make it worthwhile but still...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    2,845
    I've never had cable - it's never been worth the expense. Most of the shows I watched were available with bunny ears. I do use hulu a lot lately.

    My little brother got me a bluetooth player with a network connection for Christmas - so I can stream hulu and various other things on it.

    I do have dslr, but it is incredibly slow. I've been trying to upload a video to youtube for about the last 20 hours. It's only 85% done. Of course, noone is going to watch my 15 min video, even the people that are in it - but I'm too far to cancel it now!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,952
    Yikes, that IS slow! At least you are close to it being completed, relatively speaking. I think that there is local interference. I was quite pleased with how easy it was to set up the internet media streaming device I purchased - I have had problems with wireless sometimes but it was easy to set up.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    I'm the only one allowed to whine
    Posts
    10,576
    One of these days I suppose I'll buy a TV.

    At the moment, though, I don't really see the point; and I certainly don't see the point to buying cable.

    Just about everything I want is available on the internet or on DVD through Netflix.

    I haven't tried Hulu. I think I tried once, but my computer is too old to handle it. (just like it's too old to handle streaming from Netflix)

    It's funny, but my iPod is able to handle what my computer can't! I've watched streaming Netflix on my iPod a couple times now.
    "If Americans want to live the American Dream, they should go to Denmark." - Richard Wilkinson

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    I'm addicted to "Big Love." There, I said it. After this season I can let go of HBO.

    American motorcycle racing isn't even worth watching any more. MotoGP is available commercial free and with better commentary online. Through last season, Americans couldn't legally get World Superbike/World Supersport without subscribing to SpeedTV (but there were ways to get around that... and I don't know what streaming options they have on their website).

    I really don't follow bici racing, but you all probably know better than I do where to get your viddy fix without TV...
    Last edited by OakLeaf; 01-09-2011 at 04:48 AM. Reason: ACK! I can't believe I put an apostrophe there!
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jacksonville area of NC
    Posts
    847
    I have a satelitte dish which I love. Most of what I actually watch is live sports events and that you can't really get without satelitte or cable and I much prefer satelitte, plus the package I have you can't get with cable anyway and it's something I totally love. We upgraded to the top Dish Network level so we could get VS tv channel to watch IRL and Tour De France and hockey. Also Speed Channel is the only place we can watch Formula One, and we need the DVR for that since getting up at 6am is too early. Then again I also hate my internet/phone company, it's unreliable, which is bad since I need it for work.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,952
    I dumped cable long ago, though to be fair I've gone between having cable and not for 30 years. My current solution of rabbit ears and a wired connection between my Roku and wifi router works very well. I highly recommend a wired connection as that will always be both more stable and faster. At least at the present time.

    For content I've rabbit years, Amazon Prime, Curiosity Stream (a $5 month Roku channel with a nice range of documentaries - some of which are quite good) and a $7 month limited access to Great Courses Plus via Amazon (add on channel - provides access to over 100 college level courses and there are enough that interest me it's worth it). I also usually have an Acorn channel (either Roku or Prime add on channel) for 4.99, just not right now.

    The Roku has quite a lot of free content. That with the above works for me well. Frankly I've little time for tv and I am happy with the above. Taichi, reading, and other things take most of my "free" time.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,828
    There actually are only a handful of shows that I watch regularly. Those are the ones that I typically record on the DVR. However I do keep the TV on a lot to drown out the noisy neighbors. For that, I put on a channel that generally does not annoy me and just leave it on for as long as needed. Mostly I use the Food Network for background noise, and as a result I've found a few shows there that I like. I'm not much of a cook but I do pick up a few good tips now and then. And I really like to see the interactions between the contestants on some of the cooking competitions on Food Network, especially with the kids.

    So, I'm working on step 1, getting a new router. After that I guess I will sign up for some free trials for some of the streaming services, to see which might work out for me. I have pretty much decided which Roku model to buy, though I'm still confused about how it works. I need to see one in action, I think. I've thought about how I might hook up Roku or a similar device with a wired connection. Right now the modem and router are on the opposite side of the room from the TV -- I think I did that so that the router would be centrally located in the apartment. I think I might already have a really long ethernet cable, though, and if not I could buy one. I could run it around the room along the baseboards and it would be pretty well hidden by my furniture.

    I looked at the PBS website last night as well as the site for one of my local stations (I get one from northern VA, which is located a mile from my house, one from Maryland and another from Howard University in DC.) It looks like I can get access to lots of programs on demand if I make a donation, which I am happy to do. I still have to figure out how I can watch F1 races, practice and qualifying. I know I can get the channels from services like SlingTV and Playstation Vue, but it's not clear if I would have the option to watch on-demand after they have aired live.

    I have a sneaking suspicion that my internet bill will go up if I drop the cable TV. Also I might end up needing to upgrade to a faster internet option, but hopefully with a better router that won't be necessary.
    Last edited by ny biker; 05-04-2017 at 01:53 PM.

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
    - Red Trek 6000 mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver Trek 2000 road bike
    - Two awesome and worn out Juliana saddles

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Twin Cities, Minnesota
    Posts
    487
    My SO, Don, who passed away January 21, 2017, was so into TV! He had TV's in every room. Two in the computer room and that doesn't count the two monitors that also could be used as TVs.

    So he had the best cable package and TIVO package you could buy. Since he passed away I have removed all the TVs except the one in the living room which I want to sell - I have no use for 55" inch curved tv -- and the one downstairs. As soon as the contract is up, the cable TV is going bye-bye! I rarely watch TV and what I watch is available on the basic channels that I don't need cable for.
    kajero
    2013 Trek FX 7.6 WSD
    2012 Specialized Ruby WSD
    2004 Schwinn (I think that is the year)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,981
    How sad and am so sorry Kajero for your loss.

    I haven't lived a home with any tv for past 7 years. I don't subscribe to Netflix and seldom watch shows on 'Net.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Twin Cities, Minnesota
    Posts
    487
    Shootingstar -- thank you for your condolences.

    I don't know how to get Netflix or any other of that streaming stuff on Don's fancy TV. I tried to but all I did was mess things up so badly that I had Don's son come and fix it. So all I do is watch very basic television because three remotes are too hard for me to figure out. Oh wait, there are four. One for the TV, one for the cable company, the apple TV remote -- which is beyond me, and the Harmony remote for the sound bar. Of course the DVD player has a remote but seeing as I can't quite figure out to use it without messing up the TV, I don't use the DVD player.

    I CAN figure out the ALEXA he bought. I just tell her to play public radio and she does. And she doesn't cost anything!
    kajero
    2013 Trek FX 7.6 WSD
    2012 Specialized Ruby WSD
    2004 Schwinn (I think that is the year)

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Twin Cities, Minnesota
    Posts
    487
    Quote Originally Posted by Catrin View Post
    Of course you need a decent internet speed to make it worthwhile but still...
    Comcast raises your rate for your internet service if that is the only service they provide. Still, my bill will be less without cable TV, the $7 rate increase this month, and the $3 for sport shows that I NEVER watch. I am not sure if the $7 is for cable TV or for everything which would include internet service.

    I don't understand why Comcast is not considered a monopoly and is not broken up the way Bell telephone was a gazillion years ago. I am sure they have great lobbyists in Washington!
    kajero
    2013 Trek FX 7.6 WSD
    2012 Specialized Ruby WSD
    2004 Schwinn (I think that is the year)

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,828
    Quote Originally Posted by kajero View Post
    Comcast raises your rate for your internet service if that is the only service they provide. Still, my bill will be less without cable TV, the $7 rate increase this month, and the $3 for sport shows that I NEVER watch. I am not sure if the $7 is for cable TV or for everything which would include internet service.

    I don't understand why Comcast is not considered a monopoly and is not broken up the way Bell telephone was a gazillion years ago. I am sure they have great lobbyists in Washington!
    They are a monopoly in my neighborhood, but Verizon just recently signed agreements with the condo associations there to install FIOS. It will take time for the infrastructure to be in place but at least it will be another option. Satellite TV is not an option for me due to strict condo rules regarding installation of the dish.

    Until this past winter I rented a modem from Comcast and had my own router. I replaced the modem with one of my own, not sure which specific model but it was an Arris Surfboard modem. I found a page on the Comcast website with a list of modems that work with their system, and chose a highly-rated one from that list. I had to call Comcast for them to activate it, otherwise it was easy to set up. (Then they continued to bill me for their old modem for two months after I returned it, and didn't refund the money until I called and demanded it. )

    More recently I replaced the router. I had thought it was fairly new, but found a receipt indicating it was actually several years older than I remembered. And it used older technology. After poking around online doing research, I bought a new Linksys dual band MIMO router which is working well. I connect to one band with my pc, tablet and phone and use the other band for the Roku. The Roku has an ethernet port for a wired connection, but so far it's working fine on wifi.

    (There is a Micro Center store near me, and they tend to have good customer reviews for many products, which I rely on when making purchase decisions. They also have excellent tech support if you have any problems setting up a new device.)

    I'm very happy with the Roku and would use it even if I decided to keep the cable TV. I'm actually using the youtube app a lot, watching training videos related to my job as well as putting on music videos when I get ready for work in the morning. I also love the AccuRadio app -- many many music genres to choose from, free and no commercials. I am somewhat happy with Playstation Vue for watching live TV. I'm able to watch most shows I like, but am not thrilled with some aspects of how the dvr works and also can't seem to pause live TV or rewind it if I want to replay something. The Comcast dvr records any show while you are watching it so you have the ability to pause and rewind.

    Next I plan to try Hulu or Netflix. Hulu has released a live TV streaming service with dvr that I want to try, but it's not available for Roku yet. I also need to find a source of TV listings since there is no on-screen guide for Playstation Vue with the Roku. I like to scroll through the guide for certain channels to see what they will be airing, and select things that look interesting to record on the dvr. I've found some very interesting movies and documentaries by doing this, things I wouldn't have known about otherwise.

    I also will be getting a digital antenna so I can watch local news and PBS live.

    I haven't actually cut the cord and canceled the cable TV yet, but have not thought of any reason to keep it. I'm only delaying the decision because the channel lineup I get is no longer offered for new customers; if I get rid of it and ever decide to go back to cable TV, I will be stuck with a more expensive plan that includes tons of channels that I don't want.

    I don't know yet how much I would save by getting rid of cable TV since that depends on what other services with monthly fees I decide are worthwhile. And that can vary, for example I could pay extra for live streaming TV with sports channels during some months of the year and drop to a less expensive tier without sports during the off-season.

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
    - Red Trek 6000 mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver Trek 2000 road bike
    - Two awesome and worn out Juliana saddles

 

 

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