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Why are you still paying for cable?

I am not an expert. But I am well over Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000-hour rule explained in the book Outliers. I am just an accountant who refuses to pay for cable and would like to offer a cost saving alternative.

I probably watch more television than the average person. I like to watch things that I have never heard of, and have re-watched movies and television shows "just because."

Think about this…

  1. If you have cable, you are probably paying upwards of $75.

  2. On top of over paying, you probably say at least once a week “There is nothing on TV.”

  3. Do you rush home to watch Dancing with the Stars or do you record it so you can fast forward through the commercials and watch at YOUR convenience?

Those are Strikes ONE, TWO, and THREE. Cable you’re out of here!

Cut the Cord already…

Image from the Wall Street Journal

Cutting the cord on cable is a growing trend across the nation. When I moved into my condo about five years ago, I didn’t buy a television or sign up for an unnecessary bill. I used my laptop for almost four years and simply streamed directly to my laptop.

Upon getting married and my wife moving in, a television was purchased and subscriptions to Netflix and Hulu Plus were purchased for the awesomely low price of $15.98.

Netflix and I

With Netflix, I have been able to connect with classic and current television shows as well as movies all for the low price of $7.99. For the low price of $7.99, I have been able to stream the following to my Vizio HDTV, laptop, and IPod touch: The Lincoln Lawyer - Shade - Necessary Roughness - Six Degrees of Separation - TED Talks Icons: Richard Branson - Breaking Bad Season 1-3 - Mad Men Season 1-4 - MacGyver.

Just to name a FEW…

HuluPlus and me!

With HuluPlus, I stay connected to the more current shows for the low price of $7.99 as well: Parenthood - Modern Family – Community -The Office - Parks and Recreation - Law and Order SVU - Grey’s Anatomy – House - Up All Night - New Girl - Shark Tank - Endgame.

And for those of you who need Real Housewives of Everywhere, Bravo is a content partner.

So I am paying a total of $15.98 for viewing what I want, when I want, where I want!

You or someone you know is paying at least five times that for similar programming. If you like to throw money away, please write a check to Simeon A. Shigg. I thank you in advance.

Technology is AMAZING. I remember when I was in junior high school and my Dad carried a Beeper/Pager. I graduated high school when Motorola Two-Ways and Three-ways were on the market. And now I video chat via SKYPE from my iPod Touch to my 6-year-old nephew’s laptop. Times have changed drastically, even our ability to watch and pay for television.

For more information on Cord Cutting and more viewing solutions, please check out:

PBS – Your Guide to Cutting the Cord to Cable TV or The Wall Street Journal - Cutting the Cord on Cable

Simeon Shigg is Consensus Inc.’s resident Senior Accountant. What you don’t know about him: he thinks the world would be a better place if it was made of mint chocolate chip ice cream.


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Reader Comments (14)

I am spending about $150 per month on cable and I believe it's a waste of money. I'm really considering Apple TV or some other alternatives to cable.
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom C.
I pay a ridiculous amount each month for cable. I had Netflix, but the content is not as up to date as I'd like. Really, I worry with the streaming services that a new show I want to watch won't be available. In a way cable is like an old, comfy paid of shoes that I know I need to get rid of, but I can't yet..
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTaylor
What about nba?!?
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJ. Black
I canceled my cable and internet in December of 2010 and haven't paid for either since. I am fortunate enough to live alone, and have a smart phone with a really old (and awesome) data plan, where I'm not soft-capped (throttled) until 5GB of usage. I can stream, download, anything I want, without paying any more than the $20/mo I've been paying for my cell phone data package for years.

Yes there are bumps along the way, but even when I exceed the max data and my connection is slowed, it's still fast enough to play games online and stream, so it's not that bad.

When I figure that Comcast wanted to raise me to around $130/mo for a basic cable package, ONE HD DVR, and base-speed internet, I've actually saved just under $2,000 by tethering.

I've also gotten out of the house more. Attended more baseball games, instead of watching them on TV, worked on countless DIY projects, and been more social. It's fantastic, and I recommend it to anyone.
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCJ
I cut the cord on cable over a year ago and it has saved me about $150 a month. I have memberships for Netflix’s and Hulu Plus as well.
I was worried my toddlers would lose their minds without Nick Jr. and the Disney Channel, so I Ioaded up on dvd's of their favorite shows (if you buy them used on Amazon it is very cheap) and I was also able to find a few alternatives to Nick Jr. and Disney channel. Qubo and PBS Kids offer all day children's programming.
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMary L.
Tom C. - this article was meant to get you thinking. Hopefully you follow through and CUT THE CORD...

Taylor - You are correct Netflix may not have the current shows but HuluPlus more than makes up for it. That's why my wife and I have both. For instance this week I watched a show called Torchwood on Netflix and we watched the current season of American's Next Top Model on HuluPlus. I would just check with Hulu and see if ENOUGH of your shows are on Hulu to get rid of your comfy shoes or you can find new shows (which is also awesome).

J. Black - The NBA has a separate streaming option called NBA league pass. I would like into that and see if that would meet your NBA needs. I religious watch highlights on, but if the game is big enough I will go to a friend's house.
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimeon S.
CJ - You seem to be the YODA of this topic. "Do or Do not, there is no try."

Mary L. - Thank you for providing a parent's perspective!
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimeon S.
J. Black - The NBA offers a streaming option called NBA League pass with different plans and streaming options. I am more of a casual NBA fan. I watch the highlights on and all the BIG games seem to come on when I am at my parents' or in-laws' house... how strange LOL
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimeon S.
I totally agree, cut the cord!

I use over-the-air TV - great HD picture, Hulu, $8 Netflix and Amazon Prime. I have on-demand Vudu movies if I want to pay to rent a movie.

Any game, not on local TV channels - NBA/MLB, go to the bar to watch it on the Big screen with a Big drink!
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterUK
Tom C. - Find a way to the cut the chord. Thank you for reading.

Taylor - I agree that Netflix may not have the current shows always. That is why we have both. For instance, this week I used Netflix to watch a sci-fi show called Torchwood, and the wife watched America's Next Top Model on Hulu. You are paying a high price for those COMFY shoes. I suggest that you use the HuluPlus free trial to see if your shows are there. Join us and cut the cord!

J. Black - The NBA has a streaming option called NBA League Pass. I would look into that service. Me personally, I watch highlights on and some how I happen to be at my parents' house or my wife's parents' house when the BIG games are on... how strange lol
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimeon S.
This is an interesting perspective not just a view on conventional TV, but it opens a nice conversation about the future of entertainment, imo.
For me I still use Cable and thats only because its more expensive to get internet service in my area without it being packaged with a cable provider. With that said it seems as though many of the top cable providers are aware of this new trend of no Cable TV but are moving slow because they do not know how to capitalize off of it. With that said I think it wouldn't be too far off to imagine our society using new creative ways to view the shows we like.
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobert F.
I haven't owned a TV since college.
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWilliam
My cord has been severed since moving in with my fiance. With our both being in school as well as holding full time jobs, paying for cable would be a waste of money. I stream Netflixstraight to my television and enjoy a few of the selections of which Sir Shigg has stated above. I haven't endulged in hulu plus jut yet, but it seems inevitable. Great post
March 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterrocksteady
Wonderful post Mister Shigg. I've had this talk with family members over the years, and some don't see the advantage. I also believe that taste of shows and the 'tradition' of the television also factor into it a bit. But, hey, saving money is saving money. It should be done however possible.

Thanks for the post and the knowledge.
March 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTI

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