Have you ever wondered why you have to pay for every channel under the sun when signing up for a cable TV subscription? If you spend most nights watching sports, chances aren’t great that you’ll be flipping back and forth between the NBA Finals and The Real Housewives of New York. So why are you paying for ESPN and Bravo? More →
Cable is amazing. For as much as people justifiably rag on cable providers, the actual content and breadth of channels is absolutely mesmerizing. When you toss DVR and on-demand functionality into the mix, there’s really never been a better time to be a TV and movie fan.
But cable is expensive, and cable providers, like most successful incumbents in any given industry, have failed to keep up with the times. Cable providers, by remaining dead set on preserving current revenue streams, simply haven’t adjusted to a marketplace where paying well over $100 a month for cable is increasingly falling out of favor with consumers, especially when a monthly Netflix subscription can get the job done for less than $10.
Apple’s online TV streaming service may be a shot across the bow of cable companies, but you shouldn’t expect the cable giants to take this threat lying down. CNBC says that Apple will be directly targeting cord cutters with its new TV service this fall, but it correctly notes that cable providers have a lot of tricks up their sleeves to slow down Apple and every other potential online TV streaming service. Below we’ve outlined the three biggest ones and rated how likely cable companies are to get away with them. More →
It used to be that cable companies could brush off the tiny minority of TV viewers who watched shows primarily over the Internet as a myth. However, The Washington Post reports on some new data from Nielsen that shows TV studios and cable companies have to start seeing cord cutting as a legitimate trend that is set to accelerate in the coming years.
Cable bills have been increasing at triple the rate of inflation and it’s a good bet that your wireless bill has shot up in recent years too thanks to the rise of mobile data plans. Rather Be Shopping, however, contends that lowering your bill for these services is surprisingly easy as long as you’re willing to play hardball with your service provider. More →
As if you didn’t already have enough reasons to cut the cord and rely on streaming services to get your TV fix, cable stations themselves are giving you another one. The Wall Street Journal reports that some cable stations have actually started speeding up their programs so they can squeeze more ads into their given time slots, which means that not only are characters on shows moving slightly faster, but their voices are slightly higher pitched as well. More →
In a perfect world, we’d all be able to ditch our cable TV subscriptions for a single app or an affordable device. Sadly, that’s not the world we live in, but there are still plenty of worthwhile alternatives to cable that you should be looking in to if you’re tired of your bill going up every year for some inexplicable reason.
There are times when it’s easy to picture cable companies as Mr. Bumble, the orphanage headmaster in Oliver Twist (i.e., “Please, sir, I want some more bandwidth!” “MORE BANDWIDTH?!!!??!”). We bring this up because Ars Technica has spotted a new FCC filing made by the National Cable and Telecommunications Association in which the cable lobbying group argues that the average consumer doesn’t even need a connection speed of 25Mbps, let alone faster ones like the 1Gbps connections offered by Google Fiber. More →
If the cable industry had its way, we’d all be stuck subscribing to $150 TV bundles forever and ever. However, the rise of over-the-top online streaming services combined with faster online connectivity means that cable’s ability to force us to buy into pricey bundles is about to end… and this was nowhere more clear than at CES 2015. More →
With the launch of HBO’s standalone streaming service hitting sometime next year, you may think that the traditional cable bundle is starting to come, well, unbundled. Cable and TV executives deny this is the case since the pay TV bundle has been a hugely lucrative business model for them and they want to keep the bundle around for many more years to come. BuzzFeed has a nice roundup about what TV bigwigs are saying about the future of bundles and, wouldn’t you know it, they all think people still love paying big sums of money for hundreds of channels they never watch. More →
So you think you’re going to save money by canceling your cable TV service and watching your favorite shows through online streaming options? Sure, that may work at first but cable companies will still figure out how to get their pound of flesh from you unless they face real competition in the home broadband market. The New York Post points out that even though cable companies are losing pay TV subscribers, they’re making up for this lost revenue by jacking up prices on home broadband services. More →
Big providers like Comcast and Time Warner Cable may want to cling to the past but it looks like smaller cable providers seem to know that cord cutting is actually the future. The Wall Street Journal reports that smaller cable providers are increasingly placing more emphasis on their broadband offerings and less on TV packages as consumers have shown that they would much rather have a faster Internet service than hundreds of channels they never watch. More →
If you find your electric bill has skyrocketed this summer, your air conditioner may not be the only culprit. The Los Angeles Times reports that cable set-top boxes are now consume more power in our homes than any other household appliance other than air conditioners. The reason for this is that set-top boxes are using almost as much power when they’re supposedly shut off as when they’re turned on while you’re watching TV. More →