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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.

What's a Good Phone for Chromecast?

Motorola

Episode 1571

Ken from Merced, CA

Ken has Android and he's having issues with Chromecast. Leo says that Ken's smartphone is fairly old, running Android 4.3 (too old for Chromecast compatibility). So he'll need to get a newer device under his budget of $300. Leo says that his current favourite budget smartphone is the Motorola Moto G6. He can get them unlocked directly from Motorola for under $200. Google Fi is selling the G6 for $99.

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.

Why can't I stream from my Samsung smart TV?

Samsung

Episode 1569

Greg from Los Angeles, CA

Greg can't mirror his phone with his Samsung smarTV, but he can use his hub to search the internet. Leo says the TV has to be cast-enabled to do it, and the feature may not be turned on in the settings. It could be DNLA or AirPlay. But it also says "smart hub is trying to update." Leo says that Samsung is notorious for not updating their TVs, and it will eventually get to the point where it can't be updated online. It's clearly looking for the update though. Samsung does suggest you can reset the country and that will fix it. The wrong country code could very well cause this issue.

How can I repurpose a TIVO?

Roamio

Episode 1567

Kevin from North Carolina

Kevin wants to know how he can update the firmware on his old TIVo Roamio. Is there a way to put a new OS on it, like KODI? Leo says that would be difficult, it was designed to be a streaming media player. TIVOCommunity.com is a good place to go to see if anyone is doing that. Another good source is WeakKnees.com since they resell hardware.

Can I stream TV to all my TVs at once?

Episode 1566

Nate from Illinois

Nate has cut the cord, and he has a killer media server with the HD Home Run. But he wants to find a way to broadcast the stream to all his TVs in his house at the same time. Leo says it's called MultiCast, or Party Mode. PLEX may be able to do it. They've been working on it for quite some time. Here's info from the PLEX Forums - There's an open BETA that started last year. So it's likely ready to go. Search for MULTIPLEX. Then it's a question if your router and network can support it.

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 accurate are my ISPs download speeds?

Episode 1566

Rob from Cincinnati, OH

Rob wants to know how he can find out the more accurate speeds he's getting on his internet service. Leo says that when ISPs tell you speeds, it's usually under ideal conditions are are "peak speeds." Look for the phrase "as fast as." Then go to several internet speed testing sites like Netflix's Fast.com or SpeedTest.net. User several of them and get a good average. Also do it at different times. After 6pm is going to be different because people are watching Netflix.