Are you sick of paying an excessive amount of money for your cable? Well, you don’t have to because you can cut the cord with cable!
That’s the situation my wife and I found ourselves near the end of 2018.
We had experienced two price hikes in our cable bill in the last year and were paying $220 per month. This included internet access, basic cable, and home phone (yes, we are the last family in the world to still have a home phone).
At any rate, the amount we were paying for cable was insane. So, after convincing my wife we made the decision to try to cut the cord with cable.
So our adventure began!
Streaming Device to Cut the Cord with Cable
Although I’m a HUGE Amazon fan, we decided on Roku because DirectTV Now offered a free Roku device when you pay for your first month!
So we ended up getting one Roku Express from DirectTV Now and purchased three additional Roku Streaming Sticks + for our other televisions.
The streaming sticks are my favorite because the remote control also controls the television and volume, but the Roku Express only controls the Roku!
Streaming Service to Use to Cut the Cord with Cable
Next, we had to decide what streaming service we wanted to use.
After researching the different streaming services, I discovered there are four main services:
We decided to test DirectTV Now first to cut the cord with cable. Our original decision was solely based on getting a free Roku Device when we signed up.
They offer many different packages, and you can add on DVR (which is a great option). Below are the possibilities DirectTV Now offers:
We purchased the “Just Right” package along with availability to watch on three devices at the same time. This package cost us $60 a month.
Since we still had to pay for cable and our home phone (head slap), this dropped our bill to about $160 per month or a savings of approximately $720 a year!
At first, DirectTV now was fine. The service streamed ok, and there wasn’t a difference in quality. Below is a list of pros and cons from our standpoint:
- Incredible choice of channels available (the most of all the streaming services)
- Easy to set up
- Great navigation
- No contract
- No installation
- You can watch DirectTV Now on different Devices (iPad, computer, etc.)
- Local channels available
- Super choppy service
- DVR would often freeze
- Had to reset the service often
- Only 20 hours of DVR service
- You can’t see the shows when you fast forward the DVR, and it makes it difficult to know where to stop
After about two months of DirectTV Now, we wondered if any of the other services may be better. That’s when we decided to get a 7-day free trial to HuluLive.
Hulu Live’s basic pricing is $44.99/month. This includes over 60 channels, unlimited access to Hulu’s streaming library, watch on 2 screens at the same time, and record up to 50 hours of DVR storage.
We also added Enhanced Cloud DVR which gave us the ability to fast forward through commercials for recorded shows, 200 hours of storage, and no limit on simultaneous recordings.
This cost us approximately $55.00 per month so we would save an additional $5.00.
After 7 days of Hulu Live, we decided to make the switch permanently.
Honestly, the big reason we made the switch was that we like to see where to stop when we fast forward or rewind on our DVR. It makes life easier.
Additionally, we also found the service to be much more reliable. There are some glitchy moments, but not nearly as bad as DirectTV Now.
Below is a list of the pros and cons of HuluLive:
- Reliable service
- Easy setup
- No contract
- You can watch on several devices
- Access to Hulu’s Library
- 200 hours of DVR
- Local channels
- You can see what you are fast forwarding or rewinding
- Difficult to see future shows
- Some glitches
- No MTV (yes, I still want my MTV and miss the Road Rules Challenges)
- Fewer channels
Although we do enjoy HuluLive, we wondered if anything had the best of Hulu Live and DirectTV Now. So we decided to give Sling TV a try. We made this decision basically because they also offered MTV.
We tried SlingTV for about 60 minutes. Once we discovered they didn’t offer local channels in our area, we decided it wasn’t a good fit for us.
Sure, we could have installed an HDTV antenna, but that just would have been a headache.
However, if you are interested in SlingTV, I’ve heard good things about them. Here is their basic package info:
Lastly, there is YouTube TV. We haven’t tried this service to cut the cord with cable simply because we are exhausted looking and satisfied with Hulu Live.
If you are interested in YouTube TV, they are a little bit cheaper at $40 per month with unlimited cloud DVR storage. Here is a list of channels included:
Cut the Cord with Cable Conclusion
We are all creatures of habit, and we had cable for all of our lives. It’s difficult to change something, especially when it works!!
After four months with Hulu Live TV, we are super happy!
There are three things we realized after we made the switch to an internet-based television provider:
- We rarely watch live television, unless it’s a sporting event (GO BUCKEYES)!!! Since we have four kids and crazy schedules, we watch TV when we can.
- We probably watched too much television. Now we find ourselves going to bed earlier and getting a lot more sleep which is a good thing. Or we are just getting old:)
- My wife has learned she loves podcasts! Even yesterday, she said, “I heard about this new podcast dropping tomorrow.” I told her, I don’t know who I’m married to anymore.
Cutting the cord with cable was easy! We also just learned our old cable company increased rates again, so we are now saving about $65 month or nearly $780 per year!!!