Tired of paying a monthly cable bill and looking for other alternatives?
If so, you aren’t alone.
The Los Angeles Times reported that 812,000 pay TV subscribers cut the cable cord during the second quarter of 2016.
At that point, there were 1.4 million fewer pay TV subscribers than there were just one year earlier, according to consulting firm SNL Kagan.
It’s no secret.
There are people looking for options besides traditional cable when it comes to TV!
Here’s a look at the five best alternatives to cable TV.
Hulu is a streaming TV service that offers a unique mix of original TV content and traditional cable programming.
If you are interested in seeing shows from networks like NBC and ABC, you can watch these a day after they air.
There’s also loads of other content, including classic TV series that can bring you back to the days of the past.
There is also a large catalog of movies to choose from and it costs just $7.99 per month.
Since this is a streaming service, it works through your internet connection so you can’t cut that cord!
2. Sling TV
Sling TV is one of the most popular alternatives to cable TV.
It is like Hulu in that it streams its service through your home or office’s internet connection but it’s arguably better.
This is because it offers a good amount of live cable TV through the service.
Subscriptions start at just $20 per month but there are other packages which add more channels.
The base package, Sling Orange, includes channels like ESPN, ESPN2, A&E, Disney and more.
When you choose a slightly more expensive base package, Sling Blue ($25) adds channels like the Disney-owned stations and Fox’s offerings.
As part of their advertising campaign, Sling TV calls itself “A La Carte TV” which makes sense when you look at your other options.
You can browse their website to find specific channels you want and pay a fee of anywhere from $5 to $10 for each one.
If you are a new Sling TV customer and pre-pay two months, they will send you a free Roku Express. This is a streaming device that you access to find your apps and put all your subscription packages in one place.
If you are interested in a more advanced device, check out the Roku 3!
3. PlayStation VUE
While PlayStation VUE is one of the alternatives to cable TV, don’t be fooled by the name.
Although it shares the name of well-known PlayStation console, you don’t have to own one to enjoy the service.
With service starting at $29.99 per month (up to $64.99), PlayStation VUE offers channels like Disney, Discovery, ESPN, ESPN 2 and many others.
And you can watch these live1
You also have lots of options when it comes to news and quite a catalog of movies, too.
There is no annual contract and no annual fees, so your cost is fixed and there are no surprises.
4. HD Antennas
HD Antennas are another option that exists when it comes to cutting the cord.
HD antennas are quite a contrast when compared to the antennas of old.
Older antennas, or “rabbit ears” as they were called, were the devices you put up and crossed your fingers.
Often, when these old antennas picked up channels, they came in fuzzy and with the sound that may or may not have worked.
Things couldn’t be further from that way with an HD antenna.
These technologically advanced devices will give you HD quality reception for the channels that they pick up in your area.
HD antennas have certain ranges in which they can pick up channels.
Depending on your area, you can up more than 60 channels just buy buying the antenna and setting it up in your living room!
5. DIRECTV NOW
DIRECTV NOW is a streaming service offered through AT&T in a way that bundles services like many cable providers do.
With prices starting at $35 per month, you will get about 60 channels but there are more expensive packages that offer you more channels.
If you are into HBO and Cinemax, you can add one or both of them as an add-on to your package for just $5 each.
Even DIRECTV NOW’s most basic package includes some appealing choices. Fox News, CNN, HGTV, ESPN, ESPN 2 and Comedy Central are just a few of your options!
If you are concerned about having to erect a satellite dish on the outside of your home or office, rest easy!
DIRECTV NOW isn’t a satellite service. It is accessed through many different internet connected devices or a handful of web browsers.
This helps you to avoid the hassle of putting up a satellite dish to enjoy the service!
Many people these days enjoy more of on-demand streaming services instead of regular cable TV. As most of the on demand services enable them to enjoy content that is mostly not available through any other services. Such platforms are great for original content, older television series and movies.
Netflix is one such on demand service, which is rightly considered to be one of the best in its field. With three different packages starting from $8.99, $11.99 and $15.99 per month, you can opt the best one that fits all your requirements.
Their acceptance package of $8.99 is good for individuals who live alone, whereas with the standard package of $11.99, two people can simultaneously utilize their services and can enjoy HD streaming.
Whereas with its premium package of $15.99 you get everything, HD and Ultra HD, four streaming devices and unlimited viewing.
The first month is absolutely free, for anyone who subscribes with them, after which if you wish you can easily subscribe to any of the above mentioned packages. Currently Netflix is offering more than 10,000 movies and TV shows to its viewers, but the real deal lies in their Netflix Original TV series offerings.
7. Amazon Instant Video
Very similar to other on demand services such as Netflix, Amazon Instant Video is also a streaming service which is free for those who already have an Amazon Prime Account. For those who don’t have an Amazon Prime account, you can easily buy the Amazon Instant Video services for $8.99 per month.
It includes a variety of TV programmes in different categories, such as movies, various sporting shows, Amazon Original Shows, documentaries, exercise and fitness shows, kids TV and many more.
The Amazon Instant Video also offers other services such as Faith & Family movies along with Award Winning Short Films. Currently they are browsing more than 18,000 movies and 2,000 TV shows.
There are many other advantages of subscribing to Amazon Prime, apart from getting Amazon Instant Video for free you also get free on demand ad-free music streaming. You also get access to Kindle’s Owners Lending Library, which implies that you can borrow one Kindle book a month free with no due dates.
There are many other benefits of the Amazon Prime account which can be availed easily, the only disadvantage of using the Amazon Instant Video is that you won’t have access to cable TV goodies, but it will definitely increase the number of TV shows or movies you would like to watch and all this at a super affordable price.
8. Television Channels Online
Most of the major television networks these days post their recently aired programmes online. When viewing online, all these episodes will be available to you only for a short period of time, and you would have to wait for an entire week before you could see the next episode, but all this hard work definitely gives you the ability to watch your favourite programs without an additional cost.
If you own a Smart TV, you can easily access your favourite programs by simply downloading the networks app on your television. With this app you can enjoy your favourite shows on the big screen without subscribing, making it a better alternative to cable or satellite TV.
Most of the apps are free, however some network’s offer a paid subscription but that doesn’t mean that the cost is potentially unreasonable. For example, CBS All Access is available for $5.99 per month (plus taxes), which is really pocket friendly when you compare it to the costs of utilizing the services of a traditional cable.
Hybrid Streaming Service
With a hybrid streaming service, you can enjoy both live content and on demand content. There are many such services which you can avail such as:
- HBO Now: $14.99 per month, after a month’s free trial
- Showtime: $10.99 per month, 7-day trial period
- Starz: $10.99 per month, 7-day free trail
- Fubo TV: $19.99 per month for first two months, after which you pay $39.99 per month; it offers various sports channels for Major League Soccer, NFL and also carries various local channels
A new comer in online streaming industry, Philo with only $16 per month has a lot to offer with many options that includes most of the popular channels. For those who love to watch HGTV without cable, Philo is one of the best and cheapest options that you can find in the market.
The USP of Philo is its extremely low monthly costs. You can enjoy 37 different channels in its cheapest package, which includes: HGTV, A&E, AMC, DIY Network, BET, LifeTime, Food Network, MTV, Travel Channel, Nick Jr. and many more.
By subscribing to its $20 monthly plan you can enjoy approximately 46 different channels. They even offer you a 7-day free trail, so that you easily understand what you will get before you commit yourself with them.
The only disadvantage of Philo is that they don’t offer any sports channel, hence if you are a sports lover this might not fulfil the purpose but for those who don’t mind that, it is an absolute money saver.
The Best Alternatives to Cable TV 2019
Some cable customers are actively seeking alternatives to their cable TV programming.
Cutting the cord is enticing because some of those services offer you quite a bit of channels, while also helping to save you the high costs of expensive cable TV packages.
Another nice perk, especially with Sling TV, is that you can cherry pick the channels that matter to you and pay for those.
This way you are customizing your TV package so that is exactly what you want it to be.
The important thing to remember with these streaming options is that you will need a reliable internet connection to enjoy them!
But if you don’t watch much TV or really want to cut costs, consider an HD antenna.
These unique devices are far from the antennas of old.
They are high-tech options that give you an affordable one-time cost. But it’s important to remember that your HD antenna picks up its channels by being put up and scanning the surrounding area.
If you are in a more rural area, your HD antenna may not find you as many channels if you were in a more developed area.
If there’s one thing that should make you feel good about as a consumer, is that there are lots of alternatives to cable TV!
So if you are in the market to cut the cord, check out our website to learn more about this unique world of options!
By trying one or more than one of the options stated above you can easily enjoy your favourite TV shows or movies without having a cable or a satellite package. You can always check out your favourite TV channels website or by browsing YouTube. Or for a more substantial viewing experience you can subscribe for any of the streaming services mentioned above. As most of them come with a free trail, you can always check out on what you will get before you start paying.
There are plenty of popular TV shows and movies available through platforms other than cable or satellite, because of which there is little need to spend more on your TV viewing selections.