Its okay. You can do it. The world is not going to end, and you are going to be better off after; trust me I am.
My wife and I have been off of Dish TV for about two weeks now. We have not missed it. I have not missed the commercials, or the channel surfing, or the loss of reception every time the weather got bad.
Lifehacker.com did a great artical a few months ago about cable cutting myths. However even thought the artificial seemed to be slanted toward not cutting the cable it encouraged me instead.
Why we did it?
My family’s schedule is normally all over the place. She works in retail, I work in IT, both of them hardly predictable. In fact most weeks we were vary rarely watching live TV. In the last year or so the DVR has been catching less and less of what we want to watch. There have been stretches where all we watch is old episodes of “Good Eats” we recorded two years ago. (Which is a good thing we saved them cause they are not aired nearly enough). We were almost never there to see the programs we wanted to see day of so having the live option was not an advantage. Also we already watched many of the programs we enjoy online via the Tv networks websites.
It also didn’t help that recently dish network raised its prices. At the same time I couldn’t turn on the TV without seeing a commercial for Dish promising new customers the world and a turkey dinner. I was a good customer. I made my payments on-time and in full. It would have been nice to get a note saying “Hi there thanks for sticking with us have a free month of service” Or some kind of bone for sticking around.
When I called dish however to cancel my service they busted open the prize chest. They offered me reduced pricing for two years, offered me a new DVR, months of free premium channels. After 30 minutes on the phone listening to various sales pitches (I think if I held out a little longer they would have offered me a pony) I finally convinced them that I was not interested. This also got me thinking that if they could offer me all of this how much of what I was outlaying a month to Dish network pure profit?
How we did it?
I really need to thank my brother Tim for making this possible. Back in February he got my wife and I a new Blue Ray player, that had Netflix Hulu built in. I had a few other options, we have a game console that would support streaming, also I could always hook up my laptop but the Blue Ray player made it easy, and it got us down to 1 remote control. (Thanks Tim) Not to mention being able to play Blue Rays.
Right now we are using Netflix and the WWE network. This takes the bill from $70/Month for dish to around $20/month with the streaming.
What did we give up?
Surprisingly little,there are a few programs that are not on Netflix that I have enjoyed that are not available. However with few exceptions I can see those on the network websites or if I am patient will show up eventually.
The biggest loss however was that we had to return the DVR, and all the recorded content we has amassed over the years. But most of the movies that are not available online we can pick up cheep now, they being a few years old and with time the TV shows are going to show up so I can wait.
What about live news or sports? Not really an issue for me. I almost never get to see Ny Giants games down here in South FL, unless there playing the Dolphins, Jags or Bucs. If there is a game that I really want to see I will go to a sports bar and make a night of it. (BTW if any of you know a good place to see the Giants and that serves a nice bacon cheese burger in Cape Coral FL let me know).
As for the news haven’t watched it seriously in years. I use this thing called Google, ever hear of it?
What did we gain?
It took all of 5 minutes with the Netflix interface, to find some incredible content. Mostly great old shows that my wife and I loved from out child hood. Like the Munsters, Herculese, Xena, All the Star Trek series. We found cartoons we watched when we were kids, and series that I never had time to get into like “Dr Who” and the new “Battlestar Galacitca” I have to admit we binged a little, we watched the entire first season of “Star Trek Voyager” our first weekend with it.
Basically instead of mining the gems of TV out of all the junk we didn’t want to watch, we are now able to find and see the best that TV has had to offer from the last 50 years. Also lets not forget the portability of these services. If have an internet connection I can get to my content, via web, or app on my smartphone or tablet.
What Dish could have done?
Nothing really, there were a few things that I do want from my TV experience that should be possible with today’s technology. Right now there is no reason why every NFL game shouldn’t be network broadcast without a special subscription. I would love to be able to pick some of my channels, I would like even better to be able to cut some of my channels out and not pay for them. (mostly the ones that spend all there time trying to sell me stuff or change my religion). I would also love the SyFy channel to be about Sci-Fi again, and that the Food Network would go back to teaching us about cooking and not crazy competition shows, and Toonami on cartoon network to be 5 days a week and shown at a time where I am awake. That they would re-air the original teen Titans and make new episodes (Since I am also asking for the impossible please feel free to include the new Dodge Challenger with RT suppression, the 4.5 liter Hemi in black with gunmetal pin-striping please. )
Will this work for you?
If you need to see a program as soon as its available, if you need to see every game, or you need to know who the next dancing with the next top idol or what ever is then no. But for the rest of us I would rather dictate what my TV shows me and when, then it telling me what I can watch and when it will be on.
I can help you find the right service, show you the best hardware options for you to see it, and help you figure out if its right for you. Let us know.