At the end of 2010, we decided to cut the cord with cable television. In looking at many ways to trim the fat financially, we saw that COX Cablevision was easily our largest monthly utility bill. Our regular outlay for DVR/cable box rental, expanded service, digital cable service, DVR service, franchise fee, FCC fee, taxes etc. was $91! But that’s not all — when you include internet access it crested $137.
Frankly, the eight shows we watched on a regular basis was costing us too much. In addition, the bad habit to turn on the set as soon as I got home from work to mindlessly watch whatever was remotely interesting was keeping me from doing other more important things, like reading and blogging!
It’s been almost two weeks since we cut the cord and we survived! We no longer miss the sitting in front of the TV watching the same episode of Man Vs. Food for the upteenth time.
For shows aired on NBC, they are available for free the next day on Hulu. As for Bravo’s Top Chef — a must-follow show for me — I watch it the day after it airs on Amazon’s Video on Demand. At $1.99 an episode ($1.89 a show with the season pass), I’m able to follow the program with little chance of it being spoiled by people online. Purchasing each episode at $1.99 for a 13 show season is relatively cheap at $25.87. Even premium channel shows (hello HBO’s True Blood!) available at a slightly elevated price of $2.09 is still a great deal. As for other programs to fill in the occasional visual stimulation, my Netflix account is here to either watch a DVD or stream something online on the iPad. We’ve even discovered a new show (new at least to us) in the process: Doctor Who.
While we’re watching all the shows on the computer and iPad, the ancient and heavy CRT television has been slated for an upgrade to a slimmed down flat-screen in the near future. But the flat-screen only will have access to the internet. A big yay for sitting on the coach again like normal people.
Here’s a sampling of shows we watch — some mentioned above –and how we watch them online:
- Fringe (Fox) – posts Saturday morning on Hulu
- Top Chef (Bravo) – posts Thursday on Amazon’s Video on Demand
- Community (NBC) – posts Friday on Hulu
- 30 Rock (NBC) – posts Friday on Hulu
- Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes (Disney XD) – no legal online outlet found at the time of this posting
Unfortunately, the transition hasn’t been a complete success; some shows have been lost in the trade-out with no alternate ways of viewing them. But seriously, if you’ve seen one episode of Hoarders, you’ve seen them all.