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 10-25-2013, 08:44 Post: 188183
DennisCTB

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The beginning of September 2013 I suspended my Directv account and went to Internet TV only. I took my laptop computer and attached it to my 55 inch not smart TV in the Family Room. So I have offically joined the ranks of Cord Cutters.

I also bought a Google Chromecast that I installed in an available HDMI port and hooked up the USB for power to USB port on the TV.

Because my frequent flyer miles were about to expire by the end of September I also got a free 50 inch Smart TV from Uniteds mileage program.

For content I subscribed to Aereo and Netflix streaming service. Neflix has the best video streaming quality, Aereo is OK though and has a cloud based DVR service. I record all the Football I want to watch and any shows that are worth viewing.

And as of this week I can watch Aereo DVR content and live TV on my Samsung Galaxy S4 (android 4.2 or higher). On the S4 the football games look fantastic with no fast action flicker. Aereo also works on Apple products. The fees for Aereo start at $8 per month, Netflix is also $8 per month both with one month free trials. So far I see no reason to need Huluplus a Comcast owned company now.

Now as to smart vs dumb tv, vs Chromecast, vs laptop I would have to say that of the three Chromecast is very high on COOL but lower on practicality usability. So I rate the laptop TV combination with remote wireless keyboard and mouse as the best, Smartv second (no Aereo app yet for a lacal channels), and Chromecast last.

My wife is the only sad person around here now... cannot get her favorite cable news that she was addicted to. Also using the laptop is just a little bit technical that only now after 2 months of being off Satellite is she even beginning to try to use without my doing it for her.

Anyway I would have to say that I do not see any reason yet to reactivate my Directv account and pay $93 month if the only thing we are getting is a All News channel. The only reason that would push me back is a Happy Wife is an Inexpensive Wife, so far though is aint Happy pay Directv $1200 a year has cooled her displeasure so far. I let you know if she keeps complaining...






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 10-26-2013, 10:17 Post: 188188
hardwood

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Our apartment rent includes Mediacom cable as part of the rent, I've never ask, but I don't think canceling the cable would lower the rent. Some of the residents here have bought the upgrade package that gets them more sports, or more specialty channels, but the basic package is plenty for us.
We had DirectTV at the farm that started out as the 30. dollar promotional package that we knew would increase to about 50.00 after the first year, good deal right? But the monthly charge just kept creeping up about every month for this or that "Premium" addition to about where Dennis jumped ship. I would call and ask for an explination, well of course the person who could help me was never there, but they would call back, nobody ever did, so enough was enough, I too jumped ship. I'd have a hard time recommending Direct to anyone, their programming was fine but their business manners weren't.

Frank.






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 10-26-2013, 14:13 Post: 188192
DennisCTB

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Yes with Directv you have price creep, to stem it you have to call and ask for the customer retention department ans say that you want to disconnect the service. They will try to convince you to stay with offers of $10 off for this and that and stuff for free for a short period like free showtime or Starz etc..

Once you leave they know it may be a long time before you come back if ever. But after checking out Comcast I would have to say Directv has better phone support.






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 10-28-2013, 09:09 Post: 188213
kthompson



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Dennis I appreciate your sharing such info as this. Our cable is with our local phone company which is a cooperative and we pay somewhere about $50 per month for our cable which is also what they use for internet transmission. We get all we care for in that package other than would like the classic westerns and Hallmark channel but frankly the premium channels do not fit our care to watch list. Wondering about the SEC bringing new channel next year if that will be the last of our watching one of our favorite but if it does will see their highlights on some channel.






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 10-28-2013, 14:07 Post: 188215
hardwood

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The channels I miss most that Direct had were History 2 that had actual history shows instead of the History channel we get now that is Pawn Stars almost 24/7, the other is the RFD channel. Pawn Stars does have some educational value, but I simply cannot accept their coarse language and calling their father "The Old Man". I don't claim to be a saint, but rough language has no place on TV or radio shows.

Frank






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 01-28-2014, 10:06 Post: 188785
DennisCTB

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Six month update:

1) In October cut the cord with the local phone company for phone service and moved home phone number to VOIP with Vonage.

2)Last week had Comcast Business 50MB/10MB internet installed, canceled phone company DSL 10/.6 internet.

Next step is to completely cancel Directv as I was on 6 month max account suspension which expires in March.

We have 3 DirecTV DVRs that have hundreds of hours of content on them but not once in the last three months have we watched anything on them.

The main things we are using remains Aereo, and Netflix. To a lesser extent other internet available content. Netflix has very good video quality, Aereo is not as good and based on the load on their servers is subject to some buffering delays and pixel choppiness on fast action shots. But I can gennerally live with it. Mostly improved with Comcast speed improvement.

I have tried Amazon Prime Video and HuluPlus. Amazon prime is not bad but most content with few exceptions is on Netflix and Netflix is easier to use by a wide margin. Huluplus is owned by Comcast and they show mostly current content that I can record on Aereo where I can skip commercials, Huluplus forces you to watch commercials!

The cable companies and Aereo are going tot he supreme court over their service. Looks like the outcome may not support my cord cutting position. Of the 110 million families in the US with TV only 10 Million watch with an antenna.

So if Aereo wins it is likely that ABC CBS FOX and NBC will change their over the air (OTA) broadcast practices to no longer transmit all episodes of first run shows OTA and sports, only providing content to Cable and Satellite firms.






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 01-28-2014, 10:47 Post: 188788
hardwood

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It is amazing how the junk mail industry finds you back where ever you move to. The only part of our mailing address that resembles our old address is the state, that didn't change. We hadn't lived here six weeks when the first Direct TV "We want you back", type mailings started coming along with all the other junk mail we used to get, how did they find us?

Frank.






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 02-21-2014, 12:19 Post: 189101
bristan8

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 Cut the Cord to Pay TV

Dennis, did the cable companies win their court case?

I have been watching your TV lately as I am over here in Canada for six weeks from Australia and am interested in the various countries approach to TV service. I must say that the system here IMHO is not giving the public a very good product. At home the Majority of sets are tuned to the Free to air channels. Cable TV is struggling and will probably shrink further when internet Tv gets stronger.

In the uk BBC and the commercial channels also provide a very good FTA service. I found BBC4 an excellent channel for our taste and better than our channels in Aus. If and when they allow streaming I would subscribe to it.

I like the USA and find things like accommodation and car travel to be very good. I do think that capitalism needs some regulation by government and tv is one that, I think, is better where it is regulated. My other little peeve is air travel, where we found that unless you book about six weeks in advance, it is hard to find a direct flight at a reasonable cost in daylight hours. We have flown around Europe a bit and also in Australia and have found it to be much more user friendly. Flights are available when you want to fly and at a reasonable cost. I think that also is a case for governments to regulate the carriers so as to provide a better service for the public.






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 02-22-2014, 09:12 Post: 189113
Woodie



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Dennis- We've been "cord free" for over 30 years. Not by choice-it's been the 2 locales we've lived in, the cable svc did not not extend out far enough to provide svc.

Over The Air we get about between 25 and 35 channels, usual CBS, NBC, FOX, ION, CW etc plus shopping channels a couple weather channels(radar scans)bunch of local types all on a 30ft tower with rotor. One thing with the digital signal with OTA if the weather gets funky the screen will freeze up/pixelate and get garbled if non existant voice especially on the weaker stations. (Old analog you'd get snowy screen but still hear).

Even per the phone company we are just a tad to far for DSL pickup point. So we are stuck with 'standard landline' aka dialup for internet (yes we do still exist).

As to cell service "you have to be in the right spot" in the house for a weak signal and that can vary. Now a state legislator is pushing a bill 'cut the the phone cord "everyone can go VOIP". Checked with our security company, a switch over to wireless would mean over a hundred $ for the main panel sending unit upgrade plus another $8 dollars a month monitor fee on top of the usual fee "because thats what the wireless provider charges them". sorry for going a tad off topic. I'm getting a wee frustrated with the changes foisted on us with no concern for the consumers wallet (aka fixed income)

How does Chromecast work? I've only just begun to see the little 'widget' forsale in the sale flyers(Best Buy, etc).






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 02-22-2014, 09:59 Post: 189118
hardwood

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I'll have to confess, since I last posted saying the package we get with the rent bill from Mediacom was adequate for us we did buy a couple of extra "Packages" to go along with the basic. The Mrs. loves basketball and I was missing not having RFD so for about 20 some dollars plus all the taxes for this and that it comes to about 30 dollars a month. I have no idea what it costs the apartment complex for the basic but they likely get a bulk discount, there are 76 units in our building. We get probably 10 or 15 extra sports channels, a couple extra movie channels with movies from our time, and maybe about the same amount of RFD, Smithstonian, another history, National Geo, and others on astronomy etc., that trip my trigger.

Never say never I guess, never is a long time.

Frank.






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