• Have you dropped cable?

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    The other day I was chatting with the gentleman who was installing the voice over IP at the office and we were agreeing about how much not only voice
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    Susan Bradley Patch Lady/Prudent patcher

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    • #2598586

      OTA + Tablo HDMI 4 tuner DVR.
      $0.00 per month.

      Gotta go watch Rugby World Cup.


      • #2600190

        Because we now live in a sparsely populated rural area, we’ve now satellite dish internet. So, in your survey, I answered that we have antenna TV because the sat dish is an antenna.

        No ‘cable’ for me anymore. I stopped watching network TV decades ago. I used to be a huge feature movie watcher, but not anymore. The feature movies coming out these days are often inane, or violently against my tastes.

        But I *love* a great story, either real-life or in great fiction, so I listen to audiobooks a fair bit. Once in a while someone I know personally, or have met, or I’ve interviewed, is on a ‘TV’ show, but that’s not often. A childhood friend of whom I’m especially proud, Tim Shields, was just featured on 1st episode of the reborn “Wild Kingdom: Protecting the Wild” series themed on Desert tortoises.

        I find things which are lots more fun to do than cable TV, like broadcasting my own creations, or writing, or travel. I’ve set foot in 14 countries aside from the US, and it’ll soon be 15. I’ve studied number 15’s ancient philosophies for decades.

    • #2598607

      No, we have not dropped cable but we are returning the cable company’s TV box and remote.

      Our ISP/cable provider’s monthly package includes 125+ TV channels and Internet with download speeds as fast as 400 Mbps for $115.

      In addition, there is a monthly charge for equipment (TV Box + Remote) of $10.

      Several months ago, we were encamped for several weeks at an Airbnb in New York City. The apartment owner provided nominal television service. So, we ran a cable from one of our laptops to the television, logged into our ISP/Cable provider’s website and streamed their television programing.  All went well.

      In addition to TV provided by our ISP we were able to stream a significant amount of additional content including overseas programing via our VPN service.

      Now we are considering returning the TV box and remote for a monthly savings of $10 and streaming cable content via a computer connected to the TV.

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    • #2598629

      If by “cable” you mean the TV channel packages that folks like comcast offer(and charge a lot for), yes. I get ~60 OTA channels with an indoor antenna near the window – one of the things that looks like a printed circuit on a clear plastic sheet6x9 or some such – the others don’t work for me inside these new type windows.

      If by cable you mean the RG59u coax that internet runs over, no.- streaming stuff comes over that and it drives my router. That is my life’s blood. (currently on Starry at ~200Mbs

      Yes, Prime is supposed to add ads. I use firestick 4k. If you try a few different apps like freetv, you can find some that, though they have ads, they are minimal and tolerable. I do not know yet if I will pay for add free Prime.

      - Thinkpad P15s Gen1 20T4-002KUS, i7-10510U, UEFI/GPT, 16GB, Sammy 500GB M.2.
      - Win 11 Pro 23H2 WU. HP laserjets M254dw & P1606dn, Epson 2480 scanner. External monitor Dell s3221QS for old games.

    • #2598667

      Oh. You’re talking about cable cutting.

      By “dropping cable,” I thought you meant running wires through walls and crawlspaces.


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    • #2598689

      I’m probably in a minority, but actually I’ve never subscribed to any cable TV service nor any streaming service. I watch a really limited amount of TV and never felt the need to throw money into any of those services at all, the stuff I can watch through antenna television suits my needs just fine.

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    • #2598709

      I “cut the cable” to DISH just as soon as I was able to switch to a high speed connection to support streaming without buffering (buffering makes me lose interest in what I’m watching).  The reason is simple…$.  My streaming costs are less than half the costs of DISH AND I get channels not offered with DISH resulting in more entertainment I want for less $….no brainer.

      Another big reason I switched to streaming is that streaming travels a lot easier than a cable or DISH antenna and doesn’t cost extra to use your paid for services while traveling.  I RV a lot and I can stream almost anywhere I go without setting up an antenna or extra costs.

      HTH, Dana:))

    • #2598733

      Just finished cutting Suddenlink/Optimum totally this last week.  Actually getting them to accept cancellation was harder and worse customer service than their bad pricing.

      Had planned for a while, Phone/TV/Internet bundle was getting over $200 w/o any movie channels due to constant price increases.  And that was for 100 Mbps Internet.

      I first dropped Phone/TV until I could get ready for Frontier Fiber install and ready to cut Cable before next Billing cycle.

      Frontier Fiber very clean install since they ran their lines on the Alley behind house same as Cable, only one single box on side of house and direct fiber to ether through the single wall entry point.  Current 1Gbps plan $65 on discount.

      We’ll see how Frontier is on rate increases, I didn’t lock in 3 yr plan when they first came to neighborhood this year.

      As far as content I had already started Prime from a few years and slowly added a few others through Prime if they had a long term series I really wanted – kind of a must now since they don’t seem to sell series Blu-ray like the used to (I would wait and binge after the first year and share the discs with relatives).

      Now I have too many different stream services again like Cable Channels with most of the same content across them.  I’m going to drop as many as I can and see how few I really need to watch the series/content I want.

      Haven’t decided whether a single like Fubo or Hulu is worth it as they are really getting high for month to month and as much as Basic Cable Plan again.  What I really want is Live TV on some channels that I can’t get with my Indoor HDTV Antenna.

      I really prefer Prime one annual cost and any other I choose to stay with will prob be only annual cheaper plans if available.

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    • #2598680

      If you’re talking about cable TV, I never really embraced that to begin with 😀
      My family always used analog antennta TV as a child so I was used to only having three of the major networks.  Even back then, I knew cable TV wasn’t free…but you can imagine my utter shock when I discovered later in life that not only is it not free, but it still has commercials (and in many cases MORE commercials than the free OTA channels).  Crazy.

      Over the years, I have had cable services installed at various places I’ve lived for the purpose of Internet.  Basically, I’m always looking for the best (speed/reliability/price) broadband provider.

      Presently, I have cable Internet (no TV) installed at one location. Originally the Internet came with a TV package and together (with box rental) the price was comparable to just having Internet…but after the first year the price skyrocketed and so I ditched all the TV stuff and just kept the internet.  I rarely watched TV/never saw anything of interest the few times I looked so it wasn’t any real loss for me. The cable speed is currently 400Mbps/10Mbps which generally works for my needs. The ISP offers up to 1.2 Gbps down, I’m too cheap to pay the difference.  The only other options I currently have for broadband at that location is DSL (Max of 80 Mbps…too slow for me) or 5G (heard too many reliability issues from neighbors to consider)

      At my other location, I have fiber installed (10Gbps/10Gbps) (and the bill is about HALF of what I pay for the 400Mbps/10Mbps cable at the first location)  The only other broadband option at that location is 5G and 5G is also spotty here.

      In summary, once fiber is available at my first location, I plan to ditch that cable internet provider too as a way to say “thank you for ripping me off all these years with your monopolistic pricing” 😀

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    • #2598728

      Well, I guess we are a couple who enjoys our TV too much.  We have our cable service (Spectrum) which includes our cable tv channels, 155+ for $85, Internet 300mbs $85, and VOIP land line for $30 per month.  Then we have 4 TIVO boxes which costs us $45 per month and finally we subscribe to 7 streaming services for ~$77 a month.

      We’re retired and have our hobbies.  My wife enjoys exercise and sewing for various charities, and gardening.  I enjoy my photography, small woodworking projects, gardening and writing software for Apple’s iOS.  But we both enjoy watching TV of various types.

      We’ve discussed the idea of cutting back ( all of about 5 seconds) but we never seriously considered it.

    • #2598760

      I still find cable the best aggregator for what I watch. I could save some by going all streaming, but not enough to go through the hassle of not knowing from month to month what is being dropped or moved. I guess I’m willing to pay a bit more (and really not much) for convenience – at least now. But I’m always looking!

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    • #2598769

      Dropped cable TV and switched to OTA using a Winegard Flatwave FL5500A indoor antenna back in May 2015.

      My cable bill dropped from $128/mth for TV + broadband to $42/mth for broadband only.

      While I still get 51 local channels OTA, the only thing I regularly watch now is the local/national News and some game shows (IMHO, most of the “prime time” shows now available just aren’t worth watching.)

    • #2598780

      Yes, I have dropped Comcast cable TV in favor of internet streaming.  I use Comcast for internet access only.  I got tired of fighting with Comcast over their constant price increases, only delivering limited packages for a specific price while trying to “throttle back” the speed of service.   After negotiating a cable TV package for $110, a year later Comcast increased that package to $119, $129, and then $149 in the span of four months.  When quizzed Comcast would say “That package is no longer available.”  Comcast also raised the modem and router rental prices.  Frustrated, I switched to the internet only through Comcast.  Today, I pay $30 for Comcast internet access.  I did have to buy my own cable modem and WiFi router.  If you are wondering, Comcast is the only option in my area.

      I use only Amazon Prime as a paid streaming service using an Amazon Firestick and WiFi.  All my other Apps are for free streaming services.  I have also installed digital antennas and gone back to digital over-the-air TV reception.

      As someone posted, the only downside is trying to remember which App has what I want to watch.  I’ve noted one app has 1104 channels, others have 500+, etc.  I’ve learned to use searches for what I want to watch and add those channels to my favorites.  Over the past two years, this has worked out fine for me.


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    • #2598791

      Just got done dropping Xfinity TV & “home security”. We had a package deal with a bazillion channels we never watched, 900 mbps internet and an ineffective home security system. When it went off “special” it went to $213/mo. After dropping TV and security service I kept internet at 400 mpbs (still way more than we need) and it’s now $73/mo. This may be more than I would have to spend but I was already set up with my own DOCSIS 3.1 modem and router an didn’t feel like having a different service install (our only local alternative is CenturyLink fiber).

      We have 5 TVs each of which has a Roku device for streaming. our main home theater TV also has an HTPC attached which runs JRiver media center that supports OTA tuning and DVR services. The HTPC also supplies web access on this TV.

      We subscribe to 3 or 4 streaming services which we activate/deactivate as needed when they actually release new content we may want to watch.

    • #2598826


      I can’t lower my Dish programming any further without unsubscribing and sending back the equipment. That may happen this coming Spring after I have more time to really understand what all my options and costs are for the content I really want to access. I’m keeping what I have through the winter because I watch more TV then and to make sure I can easily access FCS football playoffs. 🤓

      Until a couple years ago, streaming wasn’t really an option for me as the only internet access available to me was miserable, overpriced 7 Mbit (or less, depending on the weather) DSL. I’ve had a roof antenna on the house for 20+ years, but that was mostly a backup to the Dish satellite/DVR setup with local channels for time shifting or rain/snow signal blockage issues.

      A few years ago, some folks down the road built a very fancy seven figure house and our little lane got a cable loop all the way to the end where I live. Now I have 500 Mbit cable, and am saving ~$50/month by switching my former overpriced, glitchy, failing infrastructure landline to cable VOIP using number portability.

      Realizing streaming had become a viable option, I started experimenting with Prime (already had) and Samsung TV+ and liked the experience. At the beginning of summer I slashed the Dish service to the minimum, cutting the bill from ~$165/mo. to $80/mo, added a few streaming services both paid and free and started actually using the antenna feed for local sports and news.

      It’s all going swimmingly, I’m spending ~$120 less per month having given up very little content I liked and added a bunch of stuff I like better at the cost of a certain amount of complexity and a mixed result of convenience (some better, some worse).

      Edit: While researching streaming, I stumbled across a couple search engine type sites that can help you find specific content you want to watch, or keep track of what’s where on the services you already have.




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    • #2598837

      I only had cable once back in the early 1970’s.  I was living then in a mobile home and the cable was readily available for about $10 a month.  Only lived there for about a year before buying a lot and having my present home built.  I put a Radio Shack 70 mile VHF/UHF antenna and rotor up on the roof with an inline amplifier and was surprised at all the channels I could get.

      Weather affects reception at my distance, but then from what I hear, you can’t depend on cable to not go out in the middle of a movie you’re watching either.  These days, with TV gone digital I can get 40 channels with all the sub-channels on digital.  Now, if they can just bring back some good programs, I’ll be happy.

      Have you seen the price of Tums? It's enough to give you heartburn.
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      • #2598841


        We agree with your desire to bring back good programing.

        One option we have found to gain access to good programing is by making a donation our local NPR TV station.

        As part of our membership package, we gain access to Passport and get extended access to PBS shows and films.

        • #2598857

          Hi Kathy, we do watch a lot of PBS and can get MPT in Annapolis (which we donate to).  We can also get WETA in Washington D.C. which has slightly different programming.  We don’t have sufficient bandwidth to stream the mostly high def. TV so we don’t use Passport.  It is so nice to be able to watch TV on PBS and not have to endure commercials!

          Have you seen the price of Tums? It's enough to give you heartburn.
      • #2598845

        I know just what you mean Mr Charlie! 🙂


        Never Say Never

        • #2598866

          I was not an avid TV watcher when I was in my 20’s but now I am.  I actually enjoy watching many of the old shows like M.A.S.H., Hogan’s Heroes, The Love Boat, Star Trek, Outer Limits, Wells Fargo, Bonanza, The Rifleman, and so many more that have been remastered and some even colorized.  In many cases I’m watching these shows in color for the first time and they come in crystal clear!

          Have you seen the price of Tums? It's enough to give you heartburn.
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          • #2598872

            My kids and grandkids were raised on Beverly Hillbillies, I Dream of Jeannie and especially Andy Griffith and Leave it to Beaver. They are all adults now and still love watching although we can all almost repeat the lines verbatim. I’m not a big TV person, but on those rainy days when I was young, that’s what I watched. Last movie I remember watching as I got older was Field Of Dreams, being a big baseball fan when I was younger.

            Never Say Never

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          • #2599050

            We’re on digital too, never had cable and don’t want it. My mom had like 50,000 channels with her cable. Not a huge TV fan but when it’s a hang back in the easy chair night we tune in with MASH and Grit or H&I for Walker Texas Ranger, commercials get muted. And, no news is good news so we avoid that drama.

            MacOS, iOS, iPadOS, and SOS at times.

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            • #2599259

              Yeah, I forgot to mention that we mute commercials because they are usually very loud and also very frequent – like 5 to 6 minutes apart on average!

              Have you seen the price of Tums? It's enough to give you heartburn.
    • #2598889

      My cable tv/internet provider (Spectrum) will not and does not offer internet service at any speed in my area unless I also subscribe to the lowest priced package of cable tv, which is just the broadcast and digital UHF/VHF local channels plus CSpan and Spectrum’s 24-hour news channel (24 hour local news with some national and international at the beginning of each half hour). I only watch TV for the news/weather/sports and some sports events; and I don’t watch anything after 8pm eastern because it is all uninteresting garbage. I reside in an apartment building that does not allow any sort of antennae, indoors or out; and nearly all of the broadcast TV broadcast towers are roughly seventy miles away from me, anyway. My basic (lowest priced) cable TV and 100 MB/sec internet costs me just a little over $100 per month. So I am pretty much stuck with what I have, which actually suits my needs; though I would probably just get the internet connection without the cable TV if they allowed that.


    • #2598909

      I haven’t had cable since 2013. Things are quite different here in Ireland compared to the US though. There’s a lot of free-to-air content transmitted via satellite from the UK so once you have a satellite dish and receiver you’ll get it. I use an antenna for the small number of Irish channels.

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    • #2598926

      There have been many mentions of Comcast/Xfinity, but none about Xfinity Mobile.

      We are long time Comcast/Xfinity subscribers including internet service, and use their Xfinity Mobile for cell phone service on two phones at $18.50 a month total.


      About 3 1/2 years ago my wife and I unlocked our ATT Android phones, got Xfinity SIM cards and changed our cell service provider to Xfinity Mobile. Our monthly cell phone charge dropped from $120 to $18.50 for 1 GB of shared cell service. I never expected it work but it did, month after month including travel and using GPS map apps. It’s not 5g service, but doesn’t matter.  Xfinity Mobile WIFI  is available in many areas.

      Xfinity Mobile uses Verizon cell towers.

      Using the Xfinity Mobile app you can change your cell service level anytime up or down, anytime, on the fly.

      Anyone else use Xfinity Mobile?

      Custom desktop Asus TUF X299 Mark 1 16GB RAM i7-7820X
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    • #2598969

      I use Vzw for my phone @ $37/mo incl tax (5G). when I am in my apt building I use wifi calling from my router which is connected to Starry, since it is hard to receive from the towers nearby through the modern building window glass. Phone is android Moto One 5G Ace on android 12. Got it used for about $100 a year or so ago.

      - Thinkpad P15s Gen1 20T4-002KUS, i7-10510U, UEFI/GPT, 16GB, Sammy 500GB M.2.
      - Win 11 Pro 23H2 WU. HP laserjets M254dw & P1606dn, Epson 2480 scanner. External monitor Dell s3221QS for old games.

    • #2598970

      I use a service-neutral device to bundle all my services (Australia’s free-to-air TV channels all have online streaming options that are free to use), so I can just search for the show on my Google Chromecast, and it’ll fire up the show based on which TV network’s streaming service has it. I still have an antenna for sometimes going to live TV (latest news, etc), but I’m increasingly unsubscribing the paid for streaming services, as they ramp up the cost. Just not worth it.

      No matter where you go, there you are.

    • #2599309

      I started to notice programming quality starting to drop about ten years ago and cut my cable then.  I still stream time to time Netflix and a couple smaller services, but that’s for periods of 3 months or less.  I’ve largely stopped caring about content made by large publishers over the past 5 years or so and I find myself mostly watching content creators on YoutTube or other free platforms.  Trying to get off of YouTube as well, but there’s a lot of people I like that aren’t on other platforms yet.

      I will pick up the odd movie from the bargain bin and I’ve gotlocal storage (moving to Jellyfin).  I’m at the point where I’d rather support a few content creators who I enjoy than major corps I don’t.

      • #2599315

        Since others mentioned cell/Internet costs.  My cell is about $50/mo with data (unlimited but restricted after 25 gig).  Internet costs are close to $90 for 100mbps while I’m waiting for fibre in the area.  I’m using a local third-tier carrier in a somewhat remote area.

        • #2599707

          My cell phone service provider also limits speeds after 25 gigabytes per month on their unlimited everything plan, which is only $55 per month for two lines that share unlimited everything, plus taxes and fees.  If it were not for that 25 gigabyte restriction, I would drop cable TV and cable internet and just get internet through my cell phone service provider. But because of the large amount of data downloaded each month just for Windows updates, my data usage for three desktop computers, one laptop, and a tablet, smartphone and Chrome book would substantially exceed the 25 gigabytes threshold even without streaming any TV shows. So I am pretty much stuck with cable TV and internet service from the only provider available in my service area and my apartment building, unfortunately.


    • #2599746

      I don’t know about other countries, but in the US, when you say “cable”, people generally think of packages of TV channels, NOT the coax cable that connects you to comcast or whomever is your ISP (Internet service provider.

      We need to change that nomenclature and call it what it is – a package of TV channels, not “cable”.

      - Thinkpad P15s Gen1 20T4-002KUS, i7-10510U, UEFI/GPT, 16GB, Sammy 500GB M.2.
      - Win 11 Pro 23H2 WU. HP laserjets M254dw & P1606dn, Epson 2480 scanner. External monitor Dell s3221QS for old games.

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      • #2599901

        Yeah I get that kind of question all the time. When asked if I have cable I always say “yes” and then I get asked about a sporting event, made for tv movie, etc., & when I say “no” the response is usually I thought you had cable? I do. I use it for accessing the internet, wifi calling, and to stream using my Amazon device, not to view television. I have a 10×14 antenna hanging on the wall that for the nominal one time fee of about $35.00 USD I receive almost 40 channels of OTA television. More than I really need + the streaming device is a yearly fee of about $150.00 USD that also includes free shipping of purchases from Amazon, free music, & other perks. I really don’t need to pay $150/250 or more for television garbage that I really can’t/won’t view. Thanks but NO THANKS!






    • #2599982

      Never had anything but “basic basic” cable TV, and that was many years ago.  As much as I dislike Comcast [and Verizon etc etc], I do get a good deal from them.  Verizon FIOS is on the street, so I get decent Comcast internet for $45/month (I call once a year to keep the price from doubling), and Xfinity mobile is $12 (+$12 taxes/fees) for 5 lines (more if I use lots of data, which I don’t).  I ported my old landline # to my mobile phone.  Add $10 for netflix and that’s my total phone/tv/internet cost.  I do live close enough to the Boston TV towers to get all the broadcast TV with rabbit ears no less.

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