Monday, July 11, 2011

What would it take for you give up cable tv?

Today I made a very large decision, I turned off my cable TV. I did not switch to satellite or some other paid medium, I just shut it all off. My house phone was through the cable company so that went also. All I have left is a 15Mb/Sec connection to the internet and three smart phones, and I couldn't be happier.

My bill from Oceanic Cable (Time Warner) here in Hawaii was $165.83 per month. Now its $49.91. That is a savings of $115.92 per month. Really the only shows we watched were True Blood on HBO and Criminal Minds. That's it really. We just couldn't justify paying $115 for access to two serialized TV shows we can download from the internet that we are already paying for.

Of course the big question is now what? I have this really great entertainment system, surround sound and everything, and no High-Def cable TV. What do I do now? Well, a few things.

First, I have had a Netflix account for quite some time now and most of the movies and TV shows that I watch are already streaming in HD. I even find shows I would have never found otherwise with Netflix. It really is great.

Second, I purchased a Roku player. My biggest worry about dropping cable TV was live news. Sure there is a lot of News Feeds via the internet, but for some reason I am hung up on live news. Maybe its a generational thing. Who knows? Roku solved that with a few options. The live news feeds I can watch currently are CNN International, Aljazeera, RT (Russian News) and BBC Word Service. While more are always being added I also get CNN, Fox News, CBS News, ABC News, and even news from KJCT in Grand Junction, CO. as pre-recorded feeds. They are never more than a couple hours old so I am not really missing much with the time zone changes anyway.

Also, since I have switched to Mac over a PC I can stream my entire iTunes library (music, video, hd movies, whatever) to my XBox, and thus to my TV from my MacBook Pro.

If all of this is so great what about the two shows you gave up for this savings? EhhemTorrentsEhhe, cough. That has been worked out as well. There is always a way to gain access to media via the internet.

If you want to save a whole lot of money ($115.92/month * 12 months = $1,391.04/year) you may want to take some time and re-evaluate what you actually take the time to watch on TV and decide for yourself if the cost is worth those few shows. Of course this option is not for everyone, so chose wisely and really look at your own situation before deciding.

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