Wednesday, July 17, 2019

FYI: Cutting the Cord - Summer Report

"Cutting The Cord" Lessons Learned

Previously on Rix Distillery:

  • Feb 15 - I Cut the Cord! - I was proud of myself for this step, and this article explains what steps I took.
  • Mar 16 - Update - I have learned how I can unlock archives from individual apps where I can revisit old episodes. Some with commercials; some with commercials. Life is good.
  • April 30 - Why Roku - Life is still good! In this article I reviewed my Roku device
  • Jun 29 - Oops! - The first hint that cutting the cord is not all I expected it to be. I discussed streaming apps available from Spectrum.

July 2019 - this post, however:...

Dirty Little Secret: Follow the Money

You have been introduced to dozens of content providers through channels on your cable box (TCM, TMC, HBO, Animal Planet, TNT, Paramount, SYFY, History, American Hero Channel, etc.). Most of these "channels" have an app on the Internet that will stream content directly to your TV.

What you may not know is that revenue for these channels still comes mostly from the cable industry. While there are hundreds of small cable companies around the world, the big players in the US are AT&T, DirectTV, Xfinity, Verizon Fios, Dish, and Charter/Spectrum.

The cable collective will not allow these "channels" to retail current content on their channel through their respective apps.

I am a fan of the History Channel's program "The Curse of Oak Island," which will resume this fall. I cannot watch it without a connection through a cable company. Past episodes can be purchased individually from several sources, such as Amazon Prime.

Cable Providers

Fortunately, I have several options!

First, I have a special deal through Spectrum. It costs me about $25/month, and the deal runs through next year. The Spectrum app plays through my Roku devices and provides my beloved BayNews9.

Next, when Spectrum raises their rates, my next choice will probably be Sling. Their $25 service brings me essentially the same channel lineup as Spectrum.

I found this summary on Clark Howard's website:
  • AT&T WatchTV $15/month or free for some AT&T wireless plan subscribers
  • Philo ~ $20/month
  • Sling TV ~$25/month
  • Hulu + Live TV ~ $44.99/month
  • PlayStation Vue ~ $49.99/month
  • YouTube TV ~ $49.99/month
  • DirecTV ~ $50/month
  • fuboTV ~ $54.99/month
I'm glad there is competition!

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