Friday, October 22, 2010

Get it when you want it ... Get rid of cable, create your own "On Demand"

So we cut the cord in our household 2 years ago and went cable-less. But why? With all the amazing shows that you can watch and ensure you are caught up around the water cooler, why would anyone not have cable?

Let's do some numbers ....

Digital Premier = $110
HD = $8
DVR = $15.00

Cable = $133 ... $130 for good measure

Number of hours per day that TV is on in an average U.S. home: 6 hours, 47 minutes ... 7hrs for rounding's sake.

Let's use 30 days for a month ... so 210 hours of television. Assume each 1hr block represents a show.

So you are paying $0.62 per show, which is great if you really sit down and watch 7 hours of television every day for 30 days.

Let's put some brackets around this ... let's just say I can only watch TV for 3hrs a night and because of a busy weekend schedule, I don't watch on the weekends.

Let's use 4 weeks for a month ... so 60 hours of television a month.

Now you are paying $2.16 per show. That's pretty expensive considering I'm probably watching commercials in about half of those shows I'm watching. That was a loosing proposition for me.

If we were to strip away everything and start from scratch ...

Over The Air HD (ABC, NBC, CBS, WB) = $0.00
Tivo HD DVR = $10.00 per month ($200 up front for the box)
Netflix 1 DVD At A Time + Instant Watch ($8.99) + Blu-Ray ($4) = $13
Apple TV (just because you want a little extra) = $0.99 cents to rent a TV show, $4.99 to rent a movie in HD
($99 up front for the box)

Alternative Setup = $26 bucks a month ... plus any shows I may watch, round to $30 for shows or a movie here and there.

What are you missing. SPORTS ... Sports have been the one thing that has kept many folks from cutting the cord.
Live streaming of just about every game that ESPN covers.

Now how do you get that on your 100" reach through and grab someones popcorn HD screen? There are several computers that do HD straight to the back of your TV.

What else are you missing ... sitting in your living room and watching any fresh episodes of BIG cable shows like True Blood or The Big C. You get them later (on netflix or Apple TV). Stars did something different with their show Spartacus where they had it available immediately on Netflix the week it aired. More than likely cable networks will do this more often.

One could argue that to do the alternate you have to have good internet

= $60 if you are starting from scratch
= $20 if you already have it and are dropping cable television

So your savings could range from $40 (no internet at all) to $80 (had cable before and dropping it now)

Either way it's cold hard cash back in your pocket every month. A good way to be thrifty, no?

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