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If you’re tired of paying high cable bills for channels you don’t even watch… it’s normal o wonder how you can get rid of cable and still watch TV. After all – It’s not cheap (My cable bill was increasing (what felt like) every month)
Cutting the cord, but don’t want to miss out on your favorite TV shows and sports games? Well, the good news is, you don’t have to sacrifice your entertainment just to save a few bucks.
The best way to get rid of Cable and still watch TV is by using a streaming stick or streaming player along with a live streaming service. This will let you pick and choose the services at a reduced price point compared to many cable services
but it’s not the only option you have….
The problem is some people are hesitant to make the switch because they don’t want to miss out on live sports events or their favorite TV shows.
Related: How to Watch TV & Movies without Internet (7 Ways)
Fortunately, there are many ways to get rid of cable and still watch TV and sports. In this post, we’ll explore some of the best options available, how they work, and even some unconventional ways.
- Equipment & Services needed before you begin
- 7 Ways to Get Rid of Cable And Still Watch TV (& Local Sports)
- Different TV Streaming services explained
- Cable TV vs Streaming service – An on-going battle
- Should I Really Get Rid of Cable?
Equipment & Services needed before you begin
To get started with cord-cutting, you’ll need a few pieces of equipment. First and foremost is a Streaming device or an HD Antenna are two options that will give you access local broadcasts from major networks like ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox.
Option 1 – Streaming device or Smart TV + WiFi: You’ll need a Streaming device or a Smart TV if you want to cancel Cable and still be able to watch TV channels and sports. (See our Streaming device comparison)
For example, with a Roku and Wi-fi connection, you can access live streaming services such as Youtube TV, Fubo TV (Good for sports), or Sling TV for less than many cable packages. This is one of the common options people getting rid of Cable opt for.
Option 2 – HDTV Antenna: You can choose from a variety of options, such as a basic indoor antenna or an advanced, multidirectional antenna. Some of these more advanced options even have a USB-powered amplifier that must be mounted outside.
I found the downside of an Antenna is that you’re limited to local only (This is why Fubo Tv, or Youtube TV, and a streaming device are ideal).
Option 3 – Alternatives: You can alternatively cast your phone or laptop to your Smart TV or streaming device so you can watch your favorite shows without having to rely on cable boxes… however this is a temporary option for most – but it does work well and is underrated.
7 Ways to Get Rid of Cable And Still Watch TV (& Local Sports)
Cutting the cord and getting rid of your cable subscription doesn’t mean you have to miss out on your favorite TV shows and sports. With a few pieces of equipment, you can still access all the content you love without having to pay high monthly fees.
So… How can you get rid of Cable and still watch TV? All you need is a Streaming device or Smart TV, and a good WiFi router. Next, TV streaming services such as YouTube TV, Fubo TV, Sling TV, or Hulu + Live TV can be downloaded and used on the device and replace Cable TV.
Any of these services can give you access national networks, original content, demand content, news channels, NFL Network, NBA League Pass and more.
Does it cost money? Of course – but in most cases you can pick and choose which services you want and save a significant amount compared to whichever over priced cable package you may have.
Related: How to get a Web Browser on Apple TV
1. Streaming devices + TV Streaming Service
A streaming device is a small device that connects to your TV and allows you to access streaming services and content over the internet. While a TV streaming service
The most optimal solution for ditching cable while still being able to watch TV involves using a streaming stick, such as Roku or Firestick, in conjunction with a live streaming service… this gives you the freedom to choose your preferred services at the most affordable price point.
- Streaming devices are an affordable and convenient way to access your favorite streaming services.
- They provide access to popular Video on demand services (VOD) such as Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, Prime video, and more.
- With a streaming device, you can easily watch whatever you’re in the mood for from the comfort of your living room.
The most popular streaming devices on the market include Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick, Chromecast, and Nvidia Shield (See a full comparison of each device)
2. Smart TV + TV Streaming Service
Smart TV software is the operating system of your television and provides access to streaming apps, on-demand content, and other features. You can use YouTube TV, Sling TV, and other cable replacement services on a Smart TV just like you would a streaming device.
Smart TVs essentially do what Streaming devices allow for, but a similar system is built-into your TV with software. These include webOS (LG), Tizen (Samsung) or Android TV (Sony).
For example, webOS is one of the most popular Smart TV platforms, allowing you to easily access Netflix, Hulu, YouTube and more directly from your home screen… while Android TV allows users to access Google Play Store apps as well as premium channels such as HBO Go and Showtime Anytime.
If you’re a die hard fan of a specific team or league, many professional sports organizations now offer streaming options that give fans access to all the latest games from their favorite teams for a fee.
For example, NBA League Pass gives viewers access to all regular season games from every team in the NBA plus out-of-market playoff games for a monthly subscription fee.
With these options available it has never been easier to watch local channels or sports without cable!
Also see: How to Play Downloaded Movies on TV
3. IPTV Apps (Plex Live TV, Pluto TV)
If you’re looking for an affordable alternative to cable or satellite TV, then IPTV might just be an ideal solution for you. Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) is an increasingly popular way to watch TV without the need for a cable or satellite subscription.
This streaming service provides access to hundreds of live TV channels, as well as on-demand content such as movies and TV shows. It also gives users the ability to record their favorite programs and watch them later at their convenience.
Related: How to get New Movies on Plex
You’ll need to be careful… as many IPTV services may not be legal, so beware.
IPTV can be accessed through a variety of devices, including smartphones, tablets, computers, and smart TVs. With IPTV, you can enjoy your favorite shows wherever you are with no need for bulky cable boxes or additional hardware.
Many IPTV services offer HD quality video streams, giving viewers crystal clear picture quality without any buffering issues.
4. Cast Streaming services to your TV (Video on Demand)
Streaming services are a great way to watch your favorite shows and movies without having to pay for a cable subscription – If you don’t want to use a streaming device or a TV, you can cast the streaming service to your TV from your phone, tablet or laptop.
There are many different streaming services available, ranging from free options such as YouTube and Crackle to paid services such as HBO Max, Netflix, Apple TV+, and Hulu to name a few.
Different streaming services also offer different perks, such as access to exclusive original content or the ability to watch live sports (this is important for many users looking to get rid of cable – for example Hulu + Live TV gives you both Video on Demand and Live TV Streaming.
Most streaming services can be used with popular streaming devices like Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV. If you’re looking for an alternative to cable, there are plenty of streaming services that work to get rid of Cable and Watch everything you need on your TV.
5. Network Sites & Apps
Network sites and apps are an increasingly popular way to watch TV without a cable subscription. Network sites and apps allow viewers to access their favorite shows from major networks such as ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, and The CW.
Many network sites also offer streaming of live events such as sports games or award shows. Viewers can watch the latest episodes of their favorite shows on demand or even stream full seasons.
With free access to content from some of the most popular networks, these websites and apps provide a great alternative to cable for those who want to save money while still catching up on their favorite series.
Additionally, many network sites offer exclusive original content like web series or other special features that are not available elsewhere, giving viewers even more value for their buck.
6. Over-the-air (OTA) antenna
Over-the-air (OTA) antenna is one of the most cost effective ways to access TV without a cable subscription. An OTA antenna gives viewers access to their local broadcast networks… viewers have access to high quality HDTV for no extra charge with no monthly fees or contracts required.
This means viewers can watch some of the most popular shows on these networks without having to pay a monthly fee. OTA antennas are relatively inexpensive and easy to install; many lower priced options range in price from $15-$40 – and work great.
A lot of my acquaintances opt to use Roku, Apple TV or Nvidia Shield in combination with Fubo TV/Youtube TV instead of an Antenna… this is because antenna typically only offer access to local broadcasts.
However, one benefit is that OTA antennas can provide better picture quality than many cable/satellite services – this is because they don’t suffer from the same ‘signal degradation’ that comes with compressed video formats used by these providers.
Depending on where you live, you may be able to pick up additional channels including regional sports networks, international channels, and religious programming.
7. Mirror websites to TV without a streaming device
If you don’t have a streaming device but still want to mirror streaming websites to your TV, you can use your computer, smartphone, or tablet to do so. Theres two ways to do this:
- Through the use of a HDMI cable: Connect your laptop or computer to your TV using an HDMI cable. This will mirror your computer’s display on the TV.
- By Screen mirroring with your phone or laptop to your TV: Certain TVs, especially smart TVs, support screen mirroring technologies like Miracast, Wi-Fi Direct, or AirPlay. This allows you to wirelessly mirror your compatible smartphone, tablet, or computer’s screen on your TV. To use this feature, enable screen mirroring on both your device and your TV, and ensure that both are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
Note: The availability/performance of these methods may vary depending on your devices and the quality of your Wi-Fi connection. Using these methods may not provide the same level of convenience or user experience as a dedicated streaming device.
Different TV Streaming services explained
YouTube TV is quickly becoming a popular streaming service for those looking to cut the cord on their cable subscriptions. You can get access to live broadcast networks in most major markets including regional sports networks like YES/NESN, ESPN, FS1/2 and the SEC network.
There are also unlimited cloud-based DVR storage and tons of on Demand content.
The streaming platform is available on a variety of devices such as Windows, Macs, Android TV, Chromecast with Google TV and more.
You can even stream from your mobile device with the iOS and Android app. YouTube TV offers an excellent way to watch live sports without having to sign up for cable or satellite service. So if you’re looking for ways to save money and still catch all the action from your favorite teams and leagues, YouTube TV is definitely worth checking out!
FuboTV is a streaming service designed for sports fans. It offers access to more than 100 live sports and entertainment channels, including NFL Network, NBA TV, NHL Network and MLB Network. You can also add premium networks, for example Showtime and Fox Soccer Plus.
The streaming platform is available on Windows and Macs, as well as iOS and Android devices, Apple TV, Roku, Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV. With FuboTV you get access to all the major networks plus plenty of original content like documentaries, original series and more.
The service also includes cloud DVR storage so you can record your favorite shows for future viewing.
Whether it’s college basketball or the World Cup Finals you’re looking for, FuboTV has you covered. It’s an affordable way to keep up with all your favorite teams without having to pay for cable. So if you’re ready to ditch cable but don’t want to miss any of the action from your favorite leagues and teams, give FuboTV a try today
Sling TV is a streaming service that offers an alternative to traditional cable subscriptions. It’s available on Windows, Macs, Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Chromecast devices so you can stream on the go or from the comfort of your own home. You can also watch Sling TV from mobile devices using the Android or iOS apps.
Sling TV offers two base packages – Blue and Orange. With these packages you get access to popular networks like ESPN, Fox Sports and NBC Sports as well as national networks such as CNN and ABC.
You can also add premium channels like HBO or Cinemax for an additional fee. Plus with Sling TV you have access to regional sports networks, demand content and more.
For those looking for an affordable way to watch their favorite shows without cable, Sling TV is a great option. The easy-to-use interface allows you to customize your subscription according to your preferences so you only pay for what you need. Plus it’s compatible with most streaming devices so you can start watching right away!
Hulu Live TV
Hulu Live TV is a streaming service that offers an affordable alternative to cable. You’ll get major networks like ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox as well as popular cable channels such as ESPN and FS1/2. You also have access to regional sports networks and original content from Hulu.
Hulu Live TV is a great option for those that already have a Hulu subscription and want to add on a Cable TV type experience. Whether it’s live sports or original series from Hulu, there’s something for everyone at an unbeatable price!
DirecTV Now is a cable-free solution for those looking to cut the cord and still have access to their favorite TV shows(a really solid option). The Stream app lets you download it directly to your streaming device
With over 60+ channels including local broadcast networks like ABC, NBC and Fox, cable networks like ESPN and FS1/2, as well as regional sports networks, it’s hard to get bored.
One of my best reasons to grab DirecTV is you’ll receive premium channels like HBO and Cinemax at no extra cost, and it really is a unique type of experience compared to the other options on this list.
For a reasonable price, DirecTV Now is a great option for those who want access to cable.
Related: 11 Best Soundbars for VIZIO TVs
Cable TV vs Streaming service – An on-going battle
Streaming services have become increasingly popular over the past few years as an alternative to traditional cable TV. They offer a wide variety of content and features, but they also come with their own set of pros and cons.
The biggest advantage of streaming services is their flexibility; you can watch what you want, when you want, and on whatever device you want.
This means that if you’re traveling or away from home for extended periods of time, you can still access your favorite shows and movies from any location with an internet connection. Additionally, many streaming services offer live TV options so that you can stay up-to-date on the news and sports in real time.
Streaming services provide viewers with a lot of flexibility and convenience but may not be able to provide access to all the same programming options available through traditional cable companies.
Streaming services and cable TV, two mighty contenders battling for the top spot in the television entertainment arena…. but what sets them apart?
Streaming services: Enter the world of streaming services, the sleek and modern alternative to cable TV. These platforms are where convenience meets flexibility. Subscribers can access a treasure trove of TV shows, movies, and documentaries on-demand, all at the touch of a button. Streamers enjoy the liberty of hopping between platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+ to discover exclusive content, all the while evading long-term contracts and cumbersome hardware.
Cable TV: On the other side of the ring, we have cable TV, the seasoned veteran boasting a plethora of channels in its arsenal. With cable, viewers can soak up live TV broadcasts, news, sports, and local channels, while also enjoying some on-demand content. However, this champ can’t shake off its heavier price tag, contractual obligations, and the need for a physical connection.
Ultimately, the choice comes down to the viewer’s preferences. Will you be swayed by streaming services’ agility and freedom, or will cable TV’s extensive channel lineup and live broadcasts lure you in? The decision is yours (we use Streaming devices here at mediapeanut!)
Should I Really Get Rid of Cable?
In this golden age of entertainment, the battle between cable TV and streaming services rages on. As a tech journalist, I’m here to help you decide whether to embrace the streaming revolution or stick to traditional cable.
Cutting the cord might save you a pretty penny. The average cable bill clocks in at around $100+ per month, while streaming alternatives like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+ offer a plethora of content at more wallet-friendly prices – as does TV Streaming options like YouTube TV,Sling TV, Hulu Live TV, and Fubo TV.
However, be warned – The costs of subscribing to multiple services and unbundling your cable bill can add up quick.
One crucial consideration is that cutting the cord will change your viewing habits. Juggling various subscriptions can be overwhelming, and keeping track of which service offers your favorite sports or shows can be maddening. Nostalgic for the days of simply changing channels are gone and if this is something you value, then IPTV might be ideal rather than video on demand content.
…also, don’t forget about your internet capabilities. Your streaming experience hinges on your connection, router, and service plan.
Outages and limitations on the number of devices allowed can put a damper on your entertainment dreams.
So, should you cut the cord? We did, but it really boils down to your viewing preferences and patience for research! If you can tailor a package that meets your needs without breaking the bank, then it’s time to bid adieu to cable. But if the hassle outweighs the benefits, perhaps cable is worth holding onto.
Does Getting Rid of Cable Save you Money?
The answer depends on several factors, such as your viewing habits and preferences. If you watch a lot of live sports or news, then cutting the cord may not be for you as these types of programming are usually only available through traditional cable companies or regional sports networks.
Consider what streaming services offer access to all your favorite channels or networks so that you don’t miss out on must-see programming. Finally, evaluate your current cable plan to compare it with the cost of streaming services.
In the end, getting rid of cable (could) save you a considerable amount of money over time – but it’s important to make sure that it fits your lifestyle before taking the plunge!
Consider how much time and effort you’re willing to put into finding content across different platforms and decide if that’s something you’re comfortable with doing.
What is the top replacement options for cable TV?
If you’re looking for an alternative to cable TV, there are several great options available. One popular option is streaming services such as YouTubeTV, Fubo, Sling TV, Hulu + Live TV, and others.
These services offer access to a variety of live channels, including national networks and regional sports networks so that you can keep up with your favorite teams. Plus, many of these services come with cloud DVR capabilities so that you can record shows for later viewing.
Should I Try a trial run before I get rid of my Cable?
It’s important to do a trial run before you cut the cord for good. This will help you make sure that all of your streaming services are running smoothly and that you have access to all the content you want. Start by setting up your streaming device(s) and downloading any necessary apps like Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime Video.
Then, take a look at what local channels are available in your area via an HD antenna and any other services such as NFL Network or NBA League Pass that offer original content. Alternatively, you could always take a look at the best streaming devices if you plan to get rid of your cable.
Once everything is set up you’ll want to spend some time possibly getting used to navigating each service and watching different shows and movies on each one. If all goes well and you don’t miss anything from your cable package, then it might be time to say goodbye to cable for good!