The cable/satellite industry is under attack!  People have finally grown tired of the games they play.  Teaser rates, rate increases, channel loss due to contract disputes, garbage laden packagelive-tv-streaming_0s and “nickle and dime” equipment charges has soured many people on paying upwards of $115 a month for the “privilege” of watching TV shows.  With the advent of much higher internet speeds, the ability to stream TV and movies has made “cutting the cable” a reality.

Personally, I have an Android streaming box, Roku Express Stick with PS Vue subscription and an HD antenna on all five of my TVs and I can watch anything on the planet earth in HD live or on-demand.  My total capital outlay for equipment was about $875 for the five TVs.  Sounds like a lot?  Consider this. I was paying Dish Network $115, Netflix $8 and renting about four movies a month from Redbox for a total monthly outlay of about $130 (I never took my Redbox rentals back the next day!).  Annually, that is $1560!  The $875 equipment investment and the $29 a month PS Vue subscription saved me $337 the first year.  That is a car payment!  Now, in year two and onward I save over $1200 a year forever more.  If you are 30 and you live to be 80 that is fifty years of $1200 a month in savings.  Drum roll please. You put $60,000 in your pocket!! What FOOL would not want to do that?

So, the next question is what streaming service out of the plethora of those offered is the best?  Let me say hands down that PS Vue is by far the best.  Their base package gives you about 40 top cable stations, some local affiliate networks (Fox and CBS in my area), the ability to watch on five TVs simultaneously, many on-demand choices and a virtual DVR. The other top services such as Sling (owned by Dish), DirectTV Now (owned by Direct TV), Dish AirTV (with built-in Sling and HD antenna capability), Apple TV offer a mixed bag.  Some of their packages are limited or are expensive. Most restrict simultaneous streaming to two devices. They do not provide DVR capability or decent on-demand options.  PS Vue offers it all and “no” you do not need a Playstation console.  It works on Roku…

Frustratingly, many of the services keep up with the game playing offering high demand channels in separate packages forcing you to buy the “combo” package at a higher price.  This kind of nonsense is why the industry is in such turmoil! Sony’s PS Vue does not play this game.  You get sports, news, special interest (NatGeo, Food Network, History…) and “chick channels” all in one package.  The only major upset they have had with their packages is the loss of Viacom’s programming, which is mostly garbage anyway.  But, if you like Comedy Central and MTV… you’re out of luck for now.

If you dare take a walk on the edge of legality, you can load Kodi or Enigma TV onto your Android box along with some add-ons and watch everything in the galaxy completely free!

In short, the choices are myriad and can be confusing, but the set-up I described in my own personal sphere is killer.  The streaming revolution will keep evolving to be sure.  When a company decides to truly offer an “al la carte” package at let’s say a buck or two a channel that will be the giant slayer.  The only thing that could derail all of this to a degree is higher fees for “high speed streaming” from the same internet service providers who also offer cable packages to help make up for lost revenue or the new administration’s repeal of Net Neutrality leading to higher fees for “data hogs” that stream.  We will see.  Peace.

 

 

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