With the probable merger of Comcast and Time Warner Cable, many cable customers are concerned what the monopoly will mean for their service. Because domination over cable could lead to a hefty price tag for services with limited options, many people are seeking out alternatives to cable.
Satellite TV is a great option for those who enjoy live entertainment, large channel selections, and working with great customer service. Receiving signals through a satellite dish outside of the home, satellite is accessible anywhere. So viewers in Arizona looking for Direct TV Mesa or subscribers in suburban West Virginia can receive the same coverage.
Satellite is a reliable cable replacement. Most satellite packages, regardless of company, can be customized to fit the consumer’s needs.
Part of the Internet TV movement, Netflix offers unlimited streaming of movies, TV shows and documentaries from a large online library. Additionally, Netflix customers can sign up for mail options which allow them access to an even larger library of movies and TV shows not available to digitally stream.
Customers can pay for one or the other, or both. Each option is $7.99 a piece with a combined total of $14.99 for both options. Netflix can be streamed to TVs through a digital streaming device, Wi-Fi or various Blu-Ray players. Additionally, Netflix can be streamed over smartphones and tablets.
Although current TV shows cannot be viewed right after the air (they are usually released a few months later), there are no commercials which is a huge plus.
3. Hulu Plus
Also for $7.99 a month, customers have access to most current TV shows, access to some complete seasons of TV series, and a few movies. While Hulu is a great option for those looking to keep up with the current seasons of TV, Hulu feels slightly limited and has frequent commercials. Though the commercials are not as lengthy as live television, there is no way to fast forward through those commercials like a DVR can.
Additionally, some current episodes are only available for a few weeks, and then disappear from Hulu all together.
Hulu is a great service and can be used in conjunction with Netflix. It is still a cheaper alternative to cable, but provides the most options between the two libraries.
Full of endless music videos, trailers, hilarious pet videos and clips of concerts, messages and comedy skits, YouTube offers a few movies or TV shows for free. While they are broken up into pieces and generally seem like much older and less popular movies and shows, those looking for more obscure items will probably find them there.
5. Amazon Instant
Much like Netflix, Amazon, through its Prime membership program, allows users to rent or purchase digital movies. While they do have a wide variety, Amazon Instant is geared more toward those who are already paying for a Prime subscription.
Instead of putting up with cable or ultimately cutting the cord, consider these other options in order to keep up with your favorite shows and movies.