the dish thingy is a satellite antenna. if you get a terrestrial over the air signal with it you could also do that with a paper clip. there are better antennas you could buy or build.
NM! My mistake.
The main thing you will miss is the bill. And you will be very happy every time you miss getting that huge bill.
I used to pay more than $200 per month for cable TV, Pay TV and Internet services.
In addition, my cable company charged me an arm and a leg for extra download space every month.
That is to say, they had a limit to the total amount of bandwidth you could D/L and U/L every month. And for every MegaByte in excess of that limit, I had to pay an “overage fee”. It was horrendous. Once you understand just what is involved, you will see these crooks for just what they are. Miserable thieving bastards!
I cancelled my Cable TV service (which was not as easy as it sounds). I had to threaten to sue the miserable bastards before they would let me out of their terrrible contract.
But, eventually, they relented. If you have a similar problem, I suggest you write to your local newspaper and contact the person there who reports on problems people have with your city’s largest cable company.
I found an Internet Service Provider who charges me $70 per month flat fee and I can download and upload all I want with no limits on bandwidth.
If you need any assistance, you are most welcome to contact me via Private Message or to start a new thread dedicated to the topic of “Getting out of your terrible service contract with your cable company.” I suggest this to you because I am not sure whether it would be considered “thread hijacking” to discuss it in this thread.
Just please be sure you check first to see that there is not already one or more such threads in existence. If there is no such thread, there sure ought to be one. It’s a very important topic and many people are feeling the oppression of these horrible monopolistic cable companies.
I HATE, HATE, HATE the bastards and all their dirty tricks. They have huge numbers of very dirty tricks and they need to be exposed for what they are. Dirty Crooked Bastards!!!
Oh dear. You should know that my cable company screwed me over for 3 years before they let me off the hook.
Sad to say, I feel terribly ashamed and humiliated because I could not find a way to get out of their oppressive contract in all that time. I consider myself to be a very savvy person when it comes to legal contracts and yet, I just could not figure out a way to get out of their contract. I just feel so stupid for allowing them to oppress me for so long.
I should have known better. I considered just stopping paying them. But I did not want the problems with a poor credit report. In retrospect, that would have been a much smaller problem than allowing them to threaten me with their bad credit reports.
I now understand how they bully and threaten elderly citizens into doing what they are told.
I also now understand why some people just snap and go crazy and … Oh dear! I best not finish this post because I just might get myself into some real serious trouble with John Law. So sorry!
You can get the audio-only version of the show for free as a podcast on iTunes.
We cut cable in our house almost two years ago. Switched to Apple TV, which has been progressively improving its lineup of offerings. We subscribe to Hulu plus and Netflix so I’d say we get around 70% of what we were watching before.
We say probably $50 a month this way. We miss a few shows. Some, like how I met your mother, I can stream from a computer monitor. Others, like Dr Who or The Americans, I purchase ala carte, which is still way cheaper than cable if you’re judicious. Some we have to wait a season for them to hit netflix. And others we just lost altogether.
We even got an HD antenna for local programming.
Overall? Really good trade.
You know what I miss the most? Random channel surfing. You can’t do it. My wife would watch a ton of what I’d call “house porn.” And I’d always watch an antique roadshow if it came on. But we don’t go searching for that. That just seems weird.
I miss it, but the trade off has still been positive. I’d recommend it.
I tried to send you a private message but you apparently have chosen to not allow people to send you PMs. That is certainly your choice.
But I suggest you might contact one of this forum’s moderators and ask how you can have some private correspondence with other members - even if it’s only very temporary - maybe for a day or two? Whatever you do, be careful that you do not publish your email address or any of your personal info in this forum or in any public place. That is a very unwise thing to do and it could greatly harm your privacy. So … Don’t do that!
But, I suggest you maybe contact one of the moderators for this forum (Cafe Society). There is a list of them at the bottom of this page: http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/forumdisplay.php?f=13
I have always had good results when asking Ellen Cherry for help. You might want to consider sending her a PM and asking for some advice. Anyway, it is certainly up to you and it’s certainly your choice.
Good luck and please try to understand if I seem a little crazed when it comes to the big Cable Corporations. I have suffered a great deal of economic punishment at their hands and I really do hate them with a passion. I hope you will try to understand why I seem to be so angry with them.
I got a Roku after reading the discussions here and elsewhere. I have a DirecTV dish, which I plan to cancel as soon as I watch one move that I have saved on my DVR.
Here is what I predict you will miss (besides the bill):
You’ll miss turning on the TV and surfing through the hundreds of channels and not finding one g.d. thing you want to watch.
You’ll miss having the TV just “on” for no particular reason for background noise.
You might miss other activities because once you get access to PBS.org, TED, Smithsonian, and Netflix, there will be so many things you want to watch that you may have to quit your job. Yeah, I know you can watch that stuff on your computer, but for me, it’s so much easier on the TV.
You’ll have to search for and locate programs and put then on watch lists, as opposed to tuning in the TV or setting the DVR for a certain time.
I’ve had amazon prime for years and yesterday I went on the site and added whole seasons of shows to my watch list… favorite BBC series like The Vicar of Dibley and Lark Rise to Candleford, as well as favs like *Frasier *and 30Rock.
I don’t watch any regular network TV, not sports, morning shows, or news. Anyway, I’ll still be able to get those through an antenna. I get all my news online.
As others have said, if you’re into watching live sports events, then it’s a whole 'nother ball game (as it were). But for me, what I’ve found is that my TV watching has become more purposeful and less random/timekilling. I feel like I’ve cleared out the junk food and laid in a supply of good, healthy, really yummy stuff.
But re junk food, I can still watch all the Law & Order (all three series) that I want with Amazon Prime.
If you into reality TV you need cable.But if you are into movies and TV shows that by all means do away with cable.
I say Hulu Plus or Netflix is more into movies and TV shows.
[li]The Weather Channel (unless you have DirecTV)[/li][li]BBC America - Some really good shows[/li][li]Some cable news - Besides CNN,MSNBC and Fox. Deustche Welle, France 24 and BBC News are all worth the price of cable,IMO[/li][li]TCM (Turner Classic Movies) - I have seen films on there that I haven’t seen in decades or which I had never seen.[/li][/ol]
That’s about it.
The movie channels are pretty much garbage as NetFlix and RedBox have everything well before they do.
This is my experience, as well. I do miss watching a couple of competition shows in real time so I can talk about it the next morning, but that’s about it.
I’m also seriously thinking of dumping cable. Between HDTV with premium channels (and the occasional PPV movie), internet and telephone, they’re soaking me for about $3,000 per year. That’s right, $250/mo. It’s out-fucking-rageous, and this is after I negotiated the cost down after threatening to quit them last year. We watch almost zero network TV, no sports, hate reality shows, and watch very few movies. The things we do watch are the high-caliber offerings of AMC, FX, TNT and the like, plus a few on HBO and SHO. But neither of us has a problem with waiting a year to see them or to paying per episode. I could probably just cancel the premium channels and the HD package and drop that down by some, but I have a feeling it wouldn’t be significant.
The only thing I miss is sports programming. Hopefully within the next few years there will be more options for it outside of packaged cable and satellite.
We have cable for live sports, but we watch almost everything on our Roku. It has Netflix and Plex. That’s everything but sports for $8/month.
I don’t understand the purpose of Hulu… is it mainly for network shows? What’s the advantage over an antenna?
I have Roku, but I like live news like CNN and CNBC for the stock market. What are my alternatives?
We dumped all but basic cable and dropped our cable bill by more than a hundred dollars and still get local programming and a lot of other stuff. I would drop it all but my wire likes a lot of basic cable channels … mostly the old movie channels and the documentary stuff.
I’m sitting here at my computer, and you know what I have on TV? Nothing. Because that’s what I watch, mostly. TV bad. Internet good. Cable money is wasted money, to me.
You don’t usually find a dvr in a cable-less setup (it can be done but it’s a step up from what the average tv consumer wants to do) so if nothing else, Hulu gives you a chance to time-shift all your broadcast favorites.
And the other stuff it has.
There is one thing you might miss if you use a Roku as a substitute for cable programming: the ability to record anything you watch on a Roku. It absolutely will not permit it. This is an issue for me because I occasionally record bits from programs to make vidcaps to illustrate articles for my website/blog/books. Not a huge one, because much can be found on online. But I believe that if I had known this little fact about Roku’s from the beginning, I would have looked for something else.
What does that mean “time-shit” all of your broadcast favorites. Do you mean, if It shows today on broadcast, I will be able to see it 24 hours later or something like that?
One thing I lilke about Aereo.com is the streaming of local channels and it works like a DVR.
Time-shifting was the OTHER major selling point for VCRs when they first came on the market (aside from the ability to privately watch porn, the major selling point). Cable networks were growing but the broadcast networks still generated much of the programming people wanted to see. It could be months before a program was in reruns if you missed it, or if it aired when you were at work you were just out of luck. The VCR let you catch it and watch when you could (which was why most VCRs notoriously difficult delayed recording features were so hated). Nowadays, such problems rarely present themselves with the variety of media available. But “time-shifting” was a big deal back in the day.