When I moved to a new apartment recently, my old cable service was unavailable. To avoid the hassle of setting it all up again (and to save some money for a little while) I decided to go without it.
For a TV addict like me, this was a tall order.
I managed to cobble together some simple fixes, though, which lasted me until football season and fall TV premieres. But if your willpower is stronger than mine, give these options a try.
For $7.99/month, Hulu Plus gives you access to their catalog of television and movies. While it’s annoying that the paid version still has commercials, it gives you the ability to watch from all of your devices. There are iPhone and iPad apps, and you can stream it through a Blu-Ray player and other devices.
So Netflix has lost 800,000 subscribers since announcing the price increase this summer, but for an Instant-only viewer like myself, it’s still a must-have. I love being able to catch up on old shows (hello, Gossip Girl) and the Instant library is only growing. This also streams over many devices and has mobile applications.
I purchased a Blu-Ray player for its streaming abilities. My player streams Hulu, Netflix, Blockbuster, Amazon Video, Pandora, and a couple other movie rental options. Now I can watch everything on my big tv instead of my little laptop, with the added bonus of a kickass picture when I watch Blu-Ray and DVD movies.
Digital HD Antenna
This was my solution on how to get my local channels. Plug it in and scan for channels, and the local ones come right up in HD. This was a bit tricky for me because I live in a garden level apartment surrounded by trees (and I bought a cheap antenna), but it’s a great option and plenty of channels were available.
I looked into a couple other options – Slingbox, Roku, etc. – but these were the ones I settled on and they worked well for what I was looking for at the time. Now that I’m back on the cable bandwagon, I got rid of the antenna but still subscribe to Hulu Plus and Netflix for streaming capabilities, and I love my Blu-Ray. If it wasn’t for my love of Steelers football and DVR, I would still be cable-free because these things worked so well.
What about you – are you a slave to the cable companies or do you find other ways to get your shows?