Cord Cutting

Is the Fire TV Stick Great Alternative to Satellite Service?

FireTV Stick 4K

Episode 1583

Gloria from North Hollywood, California

Gloria wants to know if the Fire TV stick is a good deal for cutting the cord. Rich recommends the Fire TV Stick 4K because it's the best option and it's only $10 more. Then he recommends also picking up the Fire TV Recast for the local channels. However, Gloria will need an antenna or subscribe to DirecTV Now for those local channels, minus KTLA. 

How can I Cut the Cord?

FireTV Recast

Episode 1582

Tony from Huntington Beach, CA

Tony is tired of paying so much for cable and wants to cut the cord. How can he do it and get the same amount of programming?  Rich says that cord-cutting is the most popular question he gets, but it isn't' all that easy.  Even when consumers succeed, they end up paying as much or more for programming with subscriptions that they add ala carte. Also, a lot of TV programming require a log in for a cable or satellite service, etc.

What's the Best Over-the-Air DVR?

TiVO

Episode 1577

Mike from Long Beach, CA

Mike is thinking of getting an over-the-air DVR and antenna. What's the best one to get? Leo says he's a TiVO fan, but it is the priciest option out there. There's also ChannelMaster, which is a nice OTA and they don't charge for the TV Guide. Silicon Dust also makes the HD Home Run. But Leo is a fan of TiVO because it lets him ad-skip. 

As for Antennas, check out TVFool.com and AntennaWeb.org.

How Can I Cut my Cable Subscription and Still Watch TV?

 AT&T

Episode 1574

Mike from Corona, CA

Mike has AT&T for all his services. But his rate just doubled. So he's looking for an alternative. Leo says to just call them up and tell them he is leaving unless he gets a better deal. Cord cutting is not really cutting the cable if they also provide internet and often they'll raise the rate because he is not using their cable service. In general, he doesn't really save when he adds in Netflix, Hulu, and then gets live TV from a streaming service like YouTubeTV or Sling.

How Can I be a Cord Cutter

YouTube TV

Episode 1570

Denny from Camarillo, CA

Denny's parents want to be cord cutters, get their TV from the internet, and use their wireless data. Leo says they'll need at least 10 Megabits/second download speed to watch Netflix in HD. He can check at fast.com to see how fast their internet connection is. Going beyond the data cap will cost them money, and that can happen pretty quickly at .5 GB an hour. Cable companies charge more for internet if they choose not to buy a whole TV package. Leo also recommends getting the over-the-top TV service like YouTube TV for $40 a month.

How can I cut the cord and get rid of cable?

Episode 1566

Ron from North Carolina

Ron is looking to cut the cable. Leo says you can do it by using your smart TV or a streaming box like Roku or AppleTV. But at the end of the day, after paying for Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Showtime, Amazon Prime, and LiveTV from Sling, YouTube TV etc. It ends up costing you just as much as cable. But if you have access to over the air channels, then you can get an antenna for your local channels. That would save you a lot. Then anything you don't get, you can do piecemeal. Also figure out what you gotta have and add those prices up.

How can I get an old analog TV to get digital signals?

Episode 1561

Ed from Levittown, PA

Ed is going to cut the cable. He installed an antenna and now, he can't seem to get a signal because his old TV is analog. Leo says you can get a digital adapter that will bring in the digital signal and convert it to an analog signal. Is there a portable one? Walmart sells them for around $10-30 dollars. There's even one that records. Any DVR that has an analog out will do it as well.

Two good sites to help you - TVFool.com and AntennaWeb.org. You'll be able to enter your address and it will give you a list of channels you can get and what antenna would be best for you.

Can I still stream music if I cancel my internet service?

Phone and computer

Episode 1557

Alan from Jacksonville, FL

Alan is trying to cut the cord on his internet. He wants to know if he can use Bluetooth with his music service. Leo says no, Bluetooth only works up to 30 feet away. He could cut the cable, but he'll still need to pay for internet access somehow. He could rely on his phone's internet access and stream his music from there. He could also put his phone in "hotspot" mode and run the laptop through that.

How can I stream TV shows and movies online?

Roku

Episode 1556

Michelle from San Pedro, CA

Michelle has finally cut the cable and wants to know how to stream her movies and TV shows from the internet. Does she need special equipment? Leo says maybe. If she has a smartTV, then she might not. But Leo recommends getting a streaming device anyway and he recommends the Roku. Streaming services include Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu. But there's also new services coming from Disney and many others. How does she pay for them? Leo says she would have to give them a credit card.