Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

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SuperSaver
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Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by SuperSaver » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:34 pm

We cut the cord years ago. Just pay for high-speed internet ($49.99/mo), plus Hulu ($12/mo).
We also have an over-the-air antenna and receive free local HD channels.


We've been happy with this, and watch alot of TV on our iPads. We borrow families/friends Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime logins for free. Our fave channels are Bravo, NBC, etc. Not sports-junkies.

I was surprised to hear at lunch today how affordable the new services are from fellow cord cutters. All are online, no contract, some with DVR, AND live TV included. Considering Sling Blue is $25/mo, would be a no-brainer. Any opinions on which one is best? We would have to upgrade our Apple TV 3, but most services have offers of free Roku, Apple TVs, etc

My goal would be to cancel Hulu, spend a marginal $10-20/month, and enjoy a DVR service and better local channels than we get using HDTV antenna.

FWIW, I recently made change from AT&T to Cricket, so would love to get my Wife her beloved Bravo back on a large screen TV.
http://www.businessinsider.com/streamin ... sling-tv-1

Thanks
Last edited by SuperSaver on Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

fittan
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by fittan » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:40 pm

any reason why you don't use a rabbit ear? Stick it on the wall, connect to your TV HDMI port and you'll have High def local channels for free.

https://smile.amazon.com/Vansky-Amplifi ... tv+antenna

SuperSaver
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by SuperSaver » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:54 pm

We already own one. Edited original post

wilshuer
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by wilshuer » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:06 pm

I was going that route, dropped DirecTV and looked at the various streaming options - Sling, PlayStation Vue, few others. I ended up where I didn't expect, I get my internet through cable. When I contacted the cable company to find out the price of just getting the local channels, found out packaging their lowest tier (~200 channels) with the internet cost me a net $15 extra, including a DVR, and gave me unlimited data (was capped prior). Looking at the offerings from the streaming services, saved me 10-15 going this route. I can also stream most of the channels with my cable login on other TVs in the house through Roku and while traveling. So, in my quest to cut the cord, ended up back to the cord. It wasn't a promotional price either, and no contract, so no gotchas. That was about 1.5y ago, and still same price.

Not saying my experience is normal, but if you are getting internet through a cable company, you might ask.

dcabler
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by dcabler » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:27 pm

We cut cable and we now:
1) Have an antenna in the attic
2) Antenna is connected to Tivo OTA with lifetime license
3) Roku for streaming Netflix, Amazon Prime, Acorn (British shows relatively cheap), PBS (costs $5 per month to get access to everything) and Hulu (almost making #1 and #2 redundant except for local broadcasts, but whatever)

It seems that everything wants to be your entertainment hub.
1) Our Tivo supports streaming of a lot of the same channels that the Roku does
2) Our BlueRay player supports streaming of some of the same channels as the Roku
3) Our PS4 also supports streaming of most of the same channels as the Roku
4) The TV itself also supports streaming of many of the same channels as the Roku.
5) We have a lifetime license for PlayON running on my PC which then streams to the PlayON channel on Roku (or directly to the TV). It can also stream most of the channels that Roku does. But I noticed that some of the traditional Cable TV channels will let you stream for free on a PC whereas you may have to have a Cable TV password to stream them on Roku - PlayON gets around that, but only streams at 720p resolution.

But we stick to the Roku as our hub. We also have a Roku stick that's connected to a TV in the spare bedroom - we bring it along with us sometimes when we travel.

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Psyayeayeduck
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Psyayeayeduck » Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:53 pm

FYI, I live in an area with poor TV reception via rabbit years and tried out the major streaming options out there. My take:

- With Sling TV, I had a relatively okay experience with them via Roku. The channel selection was okay but they didn't offer local channels except for one when I used them last year. So any local news I wanted to get, I had to go somewhere else for that. They do have an on-demand section which was fine. My major problem with them was that the live connection cuts out more times than I can count which was frustrating. I did like the interface and the price ($20/mo, I believe) and the extras if I wanted to splurge a bit.


- With PS Vue, off the bat I hated the interface through my Roku. Channel selection and on-demand are slightly better than Sling TV for the most part and had a better stance when it came to local channels. There was nothing special that made me want to spend $35/mo when Sling TV did a fine job scratching the TV watching itch except for the local stuff.


- With YouTube TV, it is relatively new TV streaming service. Steaming was relatively smooth and I rarely experienced any connection cutoffs during my tenure with them. One thing I noticed is that there is no remote so all channel changing is done through a combination of my smartphone and my Chromecast. At first I thought I was okay with this setup but realized that it became annoying really quickly. When I signed up, they had a 1st month free promotion. In addition, they will also give you a free Chromecast (latest version) once you paid your first month. So really you come out ahead the 1st month, and a wash in the second month. The channel selection was incredibly small compared to Sling TV and PS Vue and I couldn't justify spending $35/mo for that small of a selection. I am able to get the major 4 local channels (surprised that CBS is included).

- Right now, I signed up for Hulu TV just to test out the waters and it seems that they got the best of both worlds but at a relatively expensive price of $42/mo (I think) with a free week if you join. At that price, you get the commercial-free on-demand selections as well as the live TV portion. I do love that they have a massive selection of shows and movies to choose from without having commercials bombarding you. As for the live TV portion, I am able to get the local channels (including CBS surprisingly) with the exception of ABC (they are always on demand from my experience) and a much wider selection of other channels compared to the others I mentioned. As for the cons, I hate the Hulu interface via my Roku (older Roku models like 1 and 2 won't work, FYI). Whomever designed it did a really bad job. Looks clean but the layout is bad. Also, since it is in BETA version, the connection is spotty. At times, the connection goes out, the loading bar doesn't move, or the picture/audio is out of sync with each other. If Hulu manages to fix their streaming service, then they will have a decent product.



Hope this helps!

mouses
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by mouses » Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:42 pm

BritBox is $6.99 a month, first month trial free. UK shows.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:05 pm

We've tried most of the online streaming services for live TV. Most have had technical issues and that's why we've moved on. The exception has been YouTube TV which we use now and plan to stay with. It has been technically rock solid and we do not find using our various devices (laptop, phone, tablet, etc.) to control it a problem at all as we always have one or more within reach.

I would highly recommend YouTube TV if it's available in your market and the channel lineup meets your needs. In most if not all markets where it's available it includes the 4 major networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox). The cloud DVR works great and will save as many shows as you want for 9 months at no extra charge. Subscription price is $35/month + tax.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

FedGuy
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by FedGuy » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:14 pm

Since you're not sports junkies, you might be interested in hearing that a new streaming service called "Philo" is supposedly on track to launch by the end of the year. Philo's gimmick is that it won't include any sports channels, so it will purportedly include a decent mix of (non-sports) channels for about $20/month. The exact channel line-up hasn't been announced yet, but because Philo is a joint venture between Discovery, AMC, and Viacom it's likely to have at least some of the channels offered by those companies.

[Edited to add: searching for this online is somewhat complicated by the fact that Philo also provides streaming services to college campuses. The services are very different despite having the same name.]

pcsrini
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by pcsrini » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:37 pm

+1 for Youtube TV.

You will need the chromecast V2 or HD device plugged into your TV, but there are no set top boxes, no wires etc. And the quality of streaming has been consistent, glitch free and smooth. It is $35/month.

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Misenplace
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Misenplace » Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:30 pm

YouTube tv sounds intriguing. Is it HD? Does it include BBC, PBS, ESPN? Those are pretty much all we watch besides Netflix.
FrugalInvestor wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:05 pm
I would highly recommend YouTube TV if it's available in your market and the channel lineup meets your needs. In most if not all markets where it's available it includes the 4 major networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox). The cloud DVR works great and will save as many shows as you want for 9 months at no extra charge. Subscription price is $35/month + tax.
pcsrini wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:37 pm
+1 for Youtube TV.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:47 pm

Misenplace wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:30 pm
YouTube tv sounds intriguing. Is it HD? Does it include BBC, PBS, ESPN? Those are pretty much all we watch besides Netflix.
Yes to BBC and ESPN, no to PBS. I don't know of any online streaming services that include PBS. Depending on where you live you may be able to get it with an antenna. A small indoor one like a Mohu may work.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

KarenC
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by KarenC » Thu Oct 12, 2017 4:47 am

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:47 pm
Misenplace wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:30 pm
YouTube tv sounds intriguing. Is it HD? Does it include BBC, PBS, ESPN? Those are pretty much all we watch besides Netflix.
Yes to BBC and ESPN, no to PBS. I don't know of any online streaming services that include PBS. Depending on where you live you may be able to get it with an antenna. A small indoor one like a Mohu may work.
It’s not live streaming, but you can stream recent PBS content pretty easily; see
http://www.pbs.org/anywhere/home/. If you want access to older content, you can pay for PBS Passport; see http://www.pbs.org/passport/videos/.
"How much you know is less important than how clearly you understand where the borders of your ignorance begin." — Jason Zweig

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Top99%
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Top99% » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:29 am

We also cut the cord and now have Netflix plus a Silicon Dust HD Home Run connected to an antenna in the attic. The HD Home Run + Windows7 Media Center gives us full DVR capability for over the air TV for 2 channels at once. The nice thing about using Media Center as our DVR is we can use whatever storage we want and easily keep any recorded shows forever. For example, I am a big fan of nature and since shows on PBS.
Adapt or perish

pangea33
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by pangea33 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:09 am

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:47 pm
Misenplace wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:30 pm
YouTube tv sounds intriguing. Is it HD? Does it include BBC, PBS, ESPN? Those are pretty much all we watch besides Netflix.
Yes to BBC and ESPN, no to PBS. I don't know of any online streaming services that include PBS. Depending on where you live you may be able to get it with an antenna. A small indoor one like a Mohu may work.
PBS has a nice app that will install on Smart TVs, Rokus, Amazon Firesticks, etc.

There are hundreds of shows. Much of the content is free, although not everything. They try to encourage a subscription based approach if you want access to their full back catalog.

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DaftInvestor
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by DaftInvestor » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:40 am

pangea33 wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:09 am
FrugalInvestor wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:47 pm
Misenplace wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:30 pm
YouTube tv sounds intriguing. Is it HD? Does it include BBC, PBS, ESPN? Those are pretty much all we watch besides Netflix.
Yes to BBC and ESPN, no to PBS. I don't know of any online streaming services that include PBS. Depending on where you live you may be able to get it with an antenna. A small indoor one like a Mohu may work.
PBS has a nice app that will install on Smart TVs, Rokus, Amazon Firesticks, etc.

There are hundreds of shows. Much of the content is free, although not everything. They try to encourage a subscription based approach if you want access to their full back catalog.
Note that a lot of prior series/documentaries from PBS and BBC end up on Amazon-Prime (Grantchester, Poldark, Ken Burns documentaries, etc.).
They don't end up on Amazon-Prime in real time but the full seasons get dumped a some time after airing.

Copper John
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Copper John » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:59 am

This article summarizes the streaming services by showing which devices work with each service, the channel availability for each service in a nice side by side table and the DVR capabilities of each service.

Note the article does not rate the quality or reliability of the service nor does it point out in its channel chart which channels require a price tier beyond the service's basic or core package.

http://cordcuttersnews.com/directv-now- ... ober-2017/

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Misenplace
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Misenplace » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:31 pm

Thanks for the information everyone who chimed in. Also, that article Copper John mentioned is very helpful.

Gadget
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Gadget » Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:35 pm

My coworker uses YouTube tv and loves it. Beware if you watch a lot of TV and have internet data caps though. That's true of any streaming service.1 tb (my Cox limit) comes faster than expected when streaming hd video all day every day.

I was going to switch to YouTube tv. But then I walked into Cox Cable and threatened to stop tv and keep just internet. Said how much I'd save going to YouTube tv. So they knocked 50 off my bill per month, no questions asked. My rate lasts a year, at which point they said to come to them again and get a deal again in a year. Still might have saved going to YouTube tv, but not near as much, and wife is happier with cable because she watches discovery and animal planet.

blevine
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by blevine » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:02 pm

If you have AT&T unlimited data cell phones, you can get their Directv NOW service cheap.
I did a week trial and it worked well, though since I don't use AT&T cell service, too expensive.
I used sling, which is good for the price but picture quality is mediocre.
Tried hulu live, liked that best, but it is beta and not 100% reliable yet.
Sling was not reliable but has gotten better.

bloom2708
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by bloom2708 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:10 pm

Over a year on Playstation Vue here (Started 4/1/16). Core Slim package for $34.99/month. That package is going away and will be Core for $44.99/month.

Vue does everything we need and works perfect on Fire TV boxes and sticks.

As streaming gains popularity, the prices will continue to go up. Netflix is now $13.99 for 4 streams. $10 here, $5 there, $7 over there. :annoyed

Hopefully this will mean that traditional cable prices come back into play. I like streaming, but the streaming and large data usage on your internet is a variable I haven't quite gotten used to. Our internet does not have a bandwidth limit (at this time), but using 750 to 1,000 GB per month feels like we are approaching some limit.
"We are here not to please but to provoke thoughtfulness" Unknown Boglehead

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:12 pm

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:47 pm
Misenplace wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:30 pm
YouTube tv sounds intriguing. Is it HD? Does it include BBC, PBS, ESPN? Those are pretty much all we watch besides Netflix.
Yes to BBC and ESPN, no to PBS. I don't know of any online streaming services that include PBS. Depending on where you live you may be able to get it with an antenna. A small indoor one like a Mohu may work.
I missed that you already have an antenna that allows you to watch OTA TV. If you are able to get PBS and perhaps the other major networks on your antenna then just keep doing that and add YouTube TV or another streaming service to fill in the blanks. We like YouTube TV because of sports, cable news, etc., but your priorities may be different. The nice thing about streaming services is that they are easily changed and can usually be previewed for free for a week. The only trick is having a device or TV that is compatible with the service so research that carefully. In my experience Roku and Chromecast are very flexible but there are many others (Amazon Fire Stick, Apple TV, etc.). The other thing you may want to consider is adding an over-the-air DVR to your antenna (we have and like the TiVo Roamio OTA with lifetime guide for approximately $399).
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

hoops777
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by hoops777 » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:23 pm

I am not criticizing people’s choices...to each their own.However,I am 65,just retired and I can afford Directv and want to watch what I want,simply,including all of my sports.I also have Netflix and Amazon Prime.My monthly cost is the same as one nice dinner out.
When you look at the cost of going out to a play,a game,a nice restaurant,to me the best entertainment deal by far is your tv and all you get from it.Just to go to one NBA game with decent seats for two people is about 3 months of my tv bill.I just do not get the obsession to cut the chord,use antennas,etc,unless you have limited finances.
K.I.S.S........so easy to say so difficult to do.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:20 pm

hoops777 wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:23 pm
I am not criticizing people’s choices...to each their own.However,I am 65,just retired and I can afford Directv and want to watch what I want,simply,including all of my sports.I also have Netflix and Amazon Prime.My monthly cost is the same as one nice dinner out.
When you look at the cost of going out to a play,a game,a nice restaurant,to me the best entertainment deal by far is your tv and all you get from it.Just to go to one NBA game with decent seats for two people is about 3 months of my tv bill.I just do not get the obsession to cut the chord,use antennas,etc,unless you have limited finances.
What really pushed me over the edge on cutting the cord was our cable company's tactics to increase rates. The latest example was requiring a $10/month conversion box on every TV whether the guide was important to me or not effectively increasing my monthly charge by $30 - or $360/year. My wife got sick and tired of calling our cable company and trying to convince them to roll-back (or partially roll-back) regular price increases knowing that not doing so would mean we would be one of the select non-price-sensitive customers paying the very highest rates for not-so-premium service.

We are fortunate to have a local fiber optic internet company offering rock-solid internet service at reasonable prices. With 15mbps internet that never bogs down for less than $50/month and YouTube TV for less than $40/month I now pay half my previous cable bill saving me $1,000/year - not insignificant in my book (and not including the extra $360/yr that I never bought into). And with an antenna and TiVo OTA DVR my programming choices have increased considerably over my old cable provider and I don't have to deal with the their ongoing and deceiving pricing games.

What's not to like - unlimited finances or not?
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

Jeep512
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Jeep512 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:57 am

I've been looking for a viable streaming option. I've had an OTA antenna with Windows Media Center for about 12 years. It's worked well, but Windows Media Center is basically obsolete, so I'm starting to look at other options. I have a FireTV (Amazon Prime), which works well. So a service that integrates well with FireTV would be ideal. My goal would be to get rid of the PC and just have the FireTV. (My PC is small, but there's still lots of clutter and cables.) My daughter has a Netflix account on my FireTV, but I rarely use it.

I tried DirectTV Now early this year when they were brand new. No DVR killed them as an option. They also had some technical issues, and some usability issues with their interface. I'd try them again, but am not optimistic.

YouTube TV is great, and just came available in my area last month. I tried them for the free 2 weeks. The biggest downside is the lack of devices. I just really want a remote, so everyone can use it. Having a dedicated phone or tablet to keep charged just to drive YouTube TV isn't going to work for me. I tried using a wireless keyboard and Chrome on the Media Center PC, and it worked. But it sucked too. There was no 30 seconds skip to jump over commercials. There was no traditional guide, so setting up recordings is just by searching. Evidently the Nvidia Shield is the best device for YouTube TV, but I wasn't going to spend $200 to buy a Shield. I'm already a big user of Google services, and it was nice to not have to create a new account with a large corporation, as with the other services.

I was ready to sign up for Playstation Vue. It supposedly works very well on the Fire TV. The cost is okay, and it has all the channels that I need. But I couldn't even figure out how to sign up for their free 5 day trial. My web browser and their pages didn't like each other, and I got in some weird loop. And their whole signup process seemed rather stupid because of their gamer focus. Create an account, then create a screen name or whatever. I tried to get tech support, and couldn't post a screenshot on their webpage. Overall, just a frustrating experience.

So for now, I'm sticking with OTA/Media Center and Amazon Prime on the FireTV. But I'm continuing to look...

hoops777
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by hoops777 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:00 am

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:20 pm
hoops777 wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:23 pm
I am not criticizing people’s choices...to each their own.However,I am 65,just retired and I can afford Directv and want to watch what I want,simply,including all of my sports.I also have Netflix and Amazon Prime.My monthly cost is the same as one nice dinner out.
When you look at the cost of going out to a play,a game,a nice restaurant,to me the best entertainment deal by far is your tv and all you get from it.Just to go to one NBA game with decent seats for two people is about 3 months of my tv bill.I just do not get the obsession to cut the chord,use antennas,etc,unless you have limited finances.
What really pushed me over the edge on cutting the cord was our cable company's tactics to increase rates. The latest example was requiring a $10/month conversion box on every TV whether the guide was important to me or not effectively increasing my monthly charge by $30 - or $360/year. My wife got sick and tired of calling our cable company and trying to convince them to roll-back (or partially roll-back) regular price increases knowing that not doing so would mean we would be one of the select non-price-sensitive customers paying the very highest rates for not-so-premium service.

We are fortunate to have a local fiber optic internet company offering rock-solid internet service at reasonable prices. With 15mbps internet that never bogs down for less than $50/month and YouTube TV for less than $40/month I now pay half my previous cable bill saving me $1,000/year - not insignificant in my book (and not including the extra $360/yr that I never bought into). And with an antenna and TiVo OTA DVR my programming choices have increased considerably over my old cable provider and I don't have to deal with the their ongoing and deceiving pricing games.

What's not to like - unlimited finances or not?
I have Directv and am happy with the service.If I had a cable company or any provider that was not giving me good service I would dump it too.Like everything else,are you happy with it or not.It is also much easier to cut the cord if you do not watch a lot of sports.We have a 70 inch tv and watch local sports teams like the Warriors.Currently I am paying $121 a month for Directv with HBO and Showtime and internet.I also have Netflix and Amazon Prime.So about 140 a month for everything with a great DVR and good internet through ATT,Netflix and Amazon.I am not confident that Directv will keep those rates though.They lowered them quite a bit when I called to cancel.
K.I.S.S........so easy to say so difficult to do.

aqan
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by aqan » Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:09 am

don't get directv now.. the DVR function is a joke. only a few channels support it and its hit or miss where available. Changing channels is a nightmare. Extremely clunky software (on both android and apple). you'd expect a ton of cool features since the service is software based but in the one year i've had it they've barely offered any new features.

bloom2708
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by bloom2708 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:25 am

hoops777 wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:23 pm
I am not criticizing people’s choices...to each their own.However,I am 65,just retired and I can afford Directv and want to watch what I want,simply,including all of my sports.I also have Netflix and Amazon Prime.My monthly cost is the same as one nice dinner out.
When you look at the cost of going out to a play,a game,a nice restaurant,to me the best entertainment deal by far is your tv and all you get from it.Just to go to one NBA game with decent seats for two people is about 3 months of my tv bill.I just do not get the obsession to cut the chord,use antennas,etc,unless you have limited finances.
Finances might be a reason to downsize your cable bill. Another might be there just is not enough time in the month to watch even a little bit of the content. If you have full cable, HBO, Showtime, Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc. there isn't enough month to scratch the surface. It is a never ending "to do" list. Yuck.

We have Playstation Vue and Netflix. We can't even begin to watch everything that is interesting or your favorites, along with following your sports teams and keeping up on the latest movies.

A side benefit is simplicity. Each TV has a Fire TV box. Nothing else. No cables running from the wall, no extra remotes. We still have one Blu-Ray player on our main TV. That mostly collects dust now.

Sometimes less is more. Step away from the TV and open the front door. :shock:
"We are here not to please but to provoke thoughtfulness" Unknown Boglehead

Houe
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Houe » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:04 am

My wife and I live in a rural location where our only options are DirecTV and Dish which most of the homes in the area have. But we use OTA (small roof antenna with amplifier) for networks (NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox, and PBS) and a few others. In addition we have an Amazon FireTV. Through FireTV we can rent movies (pretty rare) and have Amazon Prime, Netflix, and Sling. Sling works pretty well with almost no signal drop out. We mainly watch ESPN, HGTV, and FOOD networks. We have used Directv Now in the past and while its probably a little better than Sling it does cost more. It just depends on what channels and services you like. I guess if we kept everything our yearly cost would be $460 ($240 for Sling, $100 Prime, $120 Netflix). However, depending on the time of year and how busy we are we sometimes cancel Netflix and/or Sling. We would keep Prime even if we didn't watch its streaming service since we do order a lot from Amazon. Because of this I was hesitant to include it in the budget.

Edge_90
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Edge_90 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:14 am

dcabler wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:27 pm
We cut cable and we now:
1) Have an antenna in the attic
2) Antenna is connected to Tivo OTA with lifetime license
3) Roku for streaming Netflix, Amazon Prime, Acorn (British shows relatively cheap), PBS (costs $5 per month to get access to everything) and Hulu (almost making #1 and #2 redundant except for local broadcasts, but whatever)

It seems that everything wants to be your entertainment hub.
1) Our Tivo supports streaming of a lot of the same channels that the Roku does
2) Our BlueRay player supports streaming of some of the same channels as the Roku
3) Our PS4 also supports streaming of most of the same channels as the Roku
4) The TV itself also supports streaming of many of the same channels as the Roku.
5) We have a lifetime license for PlayON running on my PC which then streams to the PlayON channel on Roku (or directly to the TV). It can also stream most of the channels that Roku does. But I noticed that some of the traditional Cable TV channels will let you stream for free on a PC whereas you may have to have a Cable TV password to stream them on Roku - PlayON gets around that, but only streams at 720p resolution.

But we stick to the Roku as our hub. We also have a Roku stick that's connected to a TV in the spare bedroom - we bring it along with us sometimes when we travel.
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together :D

I feel like I'm looking in the mirror. Cordcutter since '11, OTA antenna in attic, Roku (Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Acorn, PBS, etc), Plex and PlayOn streaming via PC. Own all equipment ($0 rental fees). Takes a bit of techiness but really not hard. All I want from my cable provider is the pipe to my house - I take it from there. :sharebeer

dcabler
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by dcabler » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:55 am

Edge_90 wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:14 am
dcabler wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:27 pm
We cut cable and we now:
1) Have an antenna in the attic
2) Antenna is connected to Tivo OTA with lifetime license
3) Roku for streaming Netflix, Amazon Prime, Acorn (British shows relatively cheap), PBS (costs $5 per month to get access to everything) and Hulu (almost making #1 and #2 redundant except for local broadcasts, but whatever)

It seems that everything wants to be your entertainment hub.
1) Our Tivo supports streaming of a lot of the same channels that the Roku does
2) Our BlueRay player supports streaming of some of the same channels as the Roku
3) Our PS4 also supports streaming of most of the same channels as the Roku
4) The TV itself also supports streaming of many of the same channels as the Roku.
5) We have a lifetime license for PlayON running on my PC which then streams to the PlayON channel on Roku (or directly to the TV). It can also stream most of the channels that Roku does. But I noticed that some of the traditional Cable TV channels will let you stream for free on a PC whereas you may have to have a Cable TV password to stream them on Roku - PlayON gets around that, but only streams at 720p resolution.

But we stick to the Roku as our hub. We also have a Roku stick that's connected to a TV in the spare bedroom - we bring it along with us sometimes when we travel.
I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together :D

I feel like I'm looking in the mirror. Cordcutter since '11, OTA antenna in attic, Roku (Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Acorn, PBS, etc), Plex and PlayOn streaming via PC. Own all equipment ($0 rental fees). Takes a bit of techiness but really not hard. All I want from my cable provider is the pipe to my house - I take it from there. :sharebeer
Exactly! Good thing I'm an electrical engineer. :D

Jags4186
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Jags4186 » Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:07 am

I still think if you are a heavy TV watcher it still makes sense to have cable.

Where I am internet alone is very expensive (I'm sure on purpose)--it costs me $68/mo with Comcast for 25 down/5 up and we only have 1 choice of provider. The lower package is $49.99 + tax and is only 3mbps down/1mbps up. I also need to call every year to get this price as it normally is $83/mo.

If I have Netflix at $12/mo, Hulu at $9/mo, Sling at $15/mo I'm up to $104/mo and it's just not worth the technical hassles involved (constantly reauthorizing, multiple remotes, etc. etc.) I might as well just get cable. Fortunately we get the Jets/Giants via OTA antenna and I can use a friends cable login for ESPN. Otherwise we watch Jeopardy and a few shows on Netflix. If we watched lots of cable channels I would still just get cable instead of futzing with multiple services.

Copper John
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Copper John » Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:15 pm

hoops777 wrote:
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:23 pm
I am not criticizing people’s choices...to each their own.However,I am 65,just retired and I can afford Directv and want to watch what I want,simply,including all of my sports.I also have Netflix and Amazon Prime.My monthly cost is the same as one nice dinner out.
When you look at the cost of going out to a play,a game,a nice restaurant,to me the best entertainment deal by far is your tv and all you get from it.Just to go to one NBA game with decent seats for two people is about 3 months of my tv bill.I just do not get the obsession to cut the chord,use antennas,etc,unless you have limited finances.
Price sensitivity is key factor in many economic decisions. But there are other factors that came into play in my decision:

- Greatly limited my dealings with my cable provider. I found them a very shady company to deal with.
- Very little of my time was needed to make the change. Buy a box - plug in a cable - done deal.
- Even though I could afford to keep cable, I like most people like "free" things. In my case the savings = about $100/month. If you apply the cost saving to whatever you enjoy in life it becomes a nice "free" gift. In my case that $1,200 would buy me a new fly fishing rod and a guided day of fishing every year!

spammagnet
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by spammagnet » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:04 pm

dcabler wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:27 pm
We cut cable and we now:
...
3) ... PBS (costs $5 per month to get access to everything) ...
Where do you subscribe to PBS? I don't see it available as a service. I do have a login as a result of supporting my local station, but I don't think that would provide subscription benefits.

tj
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by tj » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:12 pm

spammagnet wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:04 pm
dcabler wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:27 pm
We cut cable and we now:
...
3) ... PBS (costs $5 per month to get access to everything) ...
Where do you subscribe to PBS? I don't see it available as a service. I do have a login as a result of supporting my local station, but I don't think that would provide subscription benefits.
It does. The $5/mo donation is what gets you access to Passport.

spammagnet
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by spammagnet » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:18 pm

tj wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:12 pm
spammagnet wrote:
Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:04 pm
dcabler wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:27 pm
We cut cable and we now:
...
3) ... PBS (costs $5 per month to get access to everything) ...
Where do you subscribe to PBS? I don't see it available as a service. I do have a login as a result of supporting my local station, but I don't think that would provide subscription benefits.
It does. The $5/mo donation is what gets you access to Passport.
OK. Thanks. I didn't know if I was missing out on some services I might consider subscribing to.

patrick
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by patrick » Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:35 pm

Checking out DVDs from the public library is even cheaper ;)

tj
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by tj » Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:38 pm

patrick wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:35 pm
Checking out DVDs from the public library is even cheaper ;)
It basically just costs the gas to and fro.

My local library has tons of DVD's.

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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:13 pm

patrick wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:35 pm
Checking out DVDs from the public library is even cheaper ;)
If you're looking for live tv for things like news and sports DVDs from the library don't fill the bill. For movies they may.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

tj
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by tj » Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:20 pm

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:13 pm
patrick wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:35 pm
Checking out DVDs from the public library is even cheaper ;)
If you're looking for live tv for things like news and sports DVDs from the library don't fill the bill. For movies they may.


A lot of news and sports you can get with an antenna. Library fits the bill for movies and TV series.

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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Oct 14, 2017 6:48 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (TV).
To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by Chadnudj » Sat Oct 14, 2017 7:28 pm

May be slightly more expensive than your target, but I'm pleased with Hulu Live TV's service -- get all the ESPNs, HGTV, Food Network, Bravo, Big Ten Network, FX, Disney, Cartoon Network, CNN, MSNBC and my local ABC/CBS/NBC/Fox. Plus you get a DVR that records live TV for you/lets you pause, AND you get normal Hulu with their back catalog of shows. We pay $40 a month...and it's been worth it, I think, between live sports and kids cartoons.

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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by blevine » Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:41 am

Found one annoyance, that impacts most/all of these services.

While we get local broadcast channels, channels I can most get easily by antenna (Fox, NBC easily), when traveling and using iphone or laptop, these channels sometimes vanish completely. They only are shown in your home area, however they define that. Was a few hours drive from home and no service on Fox, during the MLB playoffs last night. This was the case on Sling, but I checked and Hulu live follows similar policies.

I also found multiple times that my regional sports network channel for my favorite local team, sometimes work on my iphone, sometimes not,
even if in my local area. No problems in the house.

Mobility was one of the advertised advantages of these services, cutting lose from cable boxes and using your own device anywhere.
But there are negotiated limits apparently. Still if you keep cable, you have similar limits. My cable company has an "app" but it barely works outside my house. Do I really need to watch TV on my phone IN MY HOUSE ? What is the point ?

hoops777
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by hoops777 » Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:10 pm

blevine wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:41 am
Found one annoyance, that impacts most/all of these services.

While we get local broadcast channels, channels I can most get easily by antenna (Fox, NBC easily), when traveling and using iphone or laptop, these channels sometimes vanish completely. They only are shown in your home area, however they define that. Was a few hours drive from home and no service on Fox, during the MLB playoffs last night. This was the case on Sling, but I checked and Hulu live follows similar policies.

I also found multiple times that my regional sports network channel for my favorite local team, sometimes work on my iphone, sometimes not,
even if in my local area. No problems in the house.

Mobility was one of the advertised advantages of these services, cutting lose from cable boxes and using your own device anywhere.
But there are negotiated limits apparently. Still if you keep cable, you have similar limits. My cable company has an "app" but it barely works outside my house. Do I really need to watch TV on my phone IN MY HOUSE ? What is the point ?
Hey what’s wrong with a 5 inch screen :D
K.I.S.S........so easy to say so difficult to do.

TRC
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by TRC » Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:43 pm

SuperSaver wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:34 pm
...,We borrow families/friends Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime logins for free. Our fave channels are Bravo, NBC, etc. Not sports-junkies.
"Borrow"?

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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by dumbbunny » Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:38 am

TRC wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:43 pm
SuperSaver wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:34 pm
...,We borrow families/friends Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime logins for free. Our fave channels are Bravo, NBC, etc. Not sports-junkies.
"Borrow"?
I had the same question. I purchased YouTube TV and can create a family group to share my membership with up to 5 people at no additional cost.
“It’s the curse of old men to realize that in the end we control nothing." "Homeland" episode, "Gerontion"

hoops777
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by hoops777 » Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:42 am

TRC wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:43 pm
SuperSaver wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:34 pm
...,We borrow families/friends Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime logins for free. Our fave channels are Bravo, NBC, etc. Not sports-junkies.
"Borrow"?
Netflix and Amazon do not allow you to borrow.
K.I.S.S........so easy to say so difficult to do.

blevine
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by blevine » Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:18 pm

Not sure what you mean.
Netflix allows you to buy a 1, 2 or 4 screen subscription.
Are you saying you must personally watch on 4 screens at once, nobody else can view one of the 4 screens ?
Seems unlikely that was the intent.

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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by bloom2708 » Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:19 pm

blevine wrote:
Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:18 pm
Not sure what you mean.
Netflix allows you to buy a 1, 2 or 4 screen subscription.
Are you saying you must personally watch on 4 screens at once, nobody else can view one of the 4 screens ?
Seems unlikely that was the intent.
I think he means. You purchase Netflix and give your email/password to your friend. They log in with your credentials and watch for "free".

I know it happens. It is not "borrowing" if borrowing is not allowed. :annoyed
"We are here not to please but to provoke thoughtfulness" Unknown Boglehead

hoops777
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Re: Which Streaming Service/Live TV?

Post by hoops777 » Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:59 pm

blevine wrote:
Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:18 pm
Not sure what you mean.
Netflix allows you to buy a 1, 2 or 4 screen subscription.
Are you saying you must personally watch on 4 screens at once, nobody else can view one of the 4 screens ?
Seems unlikely that was the intent.
I mean you are not allowed to use your friends or relatives accounts to watch from your house.How would you like it if you owned Netflix and every person who was a PAID subscriber let 10 friends and relatives use their logins and use the service for free?IThe screens you are referring to are your screens in your house,not your cousins or buddy from work.
K.I.S.S........so easy to say so difficult to do.

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