Cable Killer?

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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby nocable » Sun Aug 04, 2013 3:10 am

Yet, I can live without "cable" sports.

I'm over 50, so I've seen it all now anyway, so, I can live with those sports memories, many of which I can You Tube, or get through simple internet streaming.

The rest of sports, that I will watch, will be on broadcast OTA TV.

So, yes, I can cut the cable.

And I don't need wall-to-wall cable coverage of news. They just end up repeating themsleves many time sover, ina 24 hour cycle. Regurgitating the same talking points, over and over.

I can watch some archived News programs through Roku (see NBC News, for example).

The rest of the News, I can get with OTA TV broadcasts.

A well placed OTA antenna may get you lots of stations. Does for me ! :D
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby vnazario » Wed Dec 11, 2013 10:21 am

Hello:

IMO Roku by itself is not a cable killer since Roku lacks some key features like flash-enabled web browser to access content not yet available (Roku channels) created for the platform. Nonetheless, Roku has the most content available of any streaming OTT brand out there.

BUT...When you combine Roku with:

1. Google TV device
2. OTA antenna OR QAM/Unencrypted basic cable (I prefer QAM since my ISP is my local cable co.)
3. PLEX and PLAYO** (when using supported and unsupported scripts/plug-ins)
4. DVR Solutions (EYE TV, Simple.TV, HD HR with Media Center, TiVo)
5. "AirPlay"/Casting Solutions for Roku and Google TV
6. Subscription services (Netflix, Hulu+, Amazon Prime, Aereo) $30 or less per month depending on which you decide on. These services are to get access to content simply and legally if you don't want to deal with the hassles of complicated hardware setups and using questionable file-sharing alternatives.

1. Google TV provides a flash-enabled browser and the best YouTube experience that the Roku lacks along with other "Made for Google TV apps" available in the Google Play Store. GTV also has an HDMI pass-thru connection that will allow you to connect your Roku to it and allow for PIP and you can also control your Roku with the Google TV remote or keyboard. I have a Logitech Revue with Google TV (Android 3.5) and I control my Roku with the wireless KB of the Revue. Some sites and broadcasters block Google TV but the content blocked can be accessed via other means like Roku, OTA or PLEX and PO.

****For a limited time PLAYO* is FREE for Google TV devices so you can use all PO features free on GTV. PLEX is also available but the app is $5, but well worth it or use PLEX free through your attached Roku*****

2. An OTA antenna is great if you get clear reception and you live within a 30 mile radius of TV towers. But not everyone gets good OTA signals or can install an antenna (Like in my case) so I use QAM instead. Because my ISP is my Cable company, I can connect my line directly to my TV's that have built-in ATSC/QAM tuners to get all my locals free and with perfect signal quality and no need for an external antenna. To avoid having so many coax cables running through my home I only have 2 cables running. One goes to my main LR TV the other goes to my Mac Mini (Media Server for DVR/PLEX/PO) to its EYE TV tuner. The other TV's in the house are connected to Roku's. I watch all my DVRed recordings on all my Roku's through PLEX. If you have DSL or Satellite you can look into subscriptions to Aereo and USTVNow or if you have a computer or GoogleTV box you can watch local programming free online through FilmOn

3. PLEX and PO offer both supported and unsupported channels/plug-ins that give you access to pretty much any show or movie out there. Some of the providers are questionable file-sharing sites but....the content is available to access free if you know where to look and what plug-ins to use.

****It is up to you to look into this, please do not ask me how and what sources****

4. Some people use Simple.TV, HD HomeRun or Tivo. I prefer EYETV with Nowhere DVR channel and PLEX for my DVR solution. Main reason because there is no premium EPG service to pay and I can access my recordings on all my Rokus. HD Homerun with Media Center also offers free EPG but unless you have a cable-card Prime HD HomeRun you cannot use it with Roku on a dedicated channel. The new Roku HDHR channel does not work with their OTA/QAM tuners. It may still work via PLEX but I don't have that setup (yet) to confirm if it works or not.

I record to an external USB HD connected to my Mac Mini and pointed PLEX to use a shared folder to it that allows me to access my recordings from all my PLEX supported devices. You can also unplug the external hard drive and connect it to Roku 3 and Roku 2XS boxes and play the recordings using the Roku USB Media channel since EyeTV can convert the files into iPhone/iPad video format which is supported with Roku's built-in codecs.

5. "AirPlay/Casting Solutions": Roku has Bleess, PlayTo, Twonky and TrimePlay and PLAYO* has also a new casting feature. More channels/options are being created and supported for Roku and Google TV (MiraCast, DIAL, etc.). More recently Sling Player released an "AirPlay" channel for Roku as well to play on your TV via Roku box. So...no need to look into AppleTV or ChromeCast players if you already own a Roku or GTV box for this feature.

6. Although you can access all your content free from other means. It is much simpler to just subscribe to Netflix, Hulu+, Amazon Prime and Aereo (If you cannot access OTA/QAM). If you subscribe to all 4 services you would be paying $30 per month instead of $50 or higher with a TV provider. Because of my setup I only pay $8 for Netflix but I can cancel that too if I wanted but for simplicity and legal reasons I only use questionable means at a minimum.

7. Many public libraries have free movie DVD's and TV series. Watch free content at your leisure. No need for DVD kiosks unless you want the latest and you don't want to rent from Vudu, Amazon, RedBox, BB on Demand. You can also rip your already owned music and movies onto your media server and view via PLEX.

Bottom line...there is a Cable Killer solution for cord-cutters and cord-nevers but Roku is just one important piece but by itself it is not a "Cable Killer". When used to its max potential in combination with the right equipment (Google TV and PC as media server for local media DVR, PLEX and PO, OTA/QAM and DVR) and subscription services then and only then it can achieve this title.

Hope my tips and tricks help you guys achieve "cutting the cord". Have fun experimenting, doing research and saving $$$$.
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Local TV: QAM from ISP coax line. PLEX+unsupported plug-ins.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby gelbomes » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:02 am

Well there are quite a few sports channels plus if you are an avid sports channel you would have to pay for it on cable any way and this way the sports packages are half the price.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby fredneck » Wed Dec 18, 2013 7:33 pm

Roku did a darn job of cutting our cable bill. Sports are not as big a priority as hunting and fishin shows. Lucky I was able to find a couple of channels I enjoy. The Mrs misses her needlepoint channel although has found a crafting channel she enjoys watching on Roku. While it may not yet be perfect, Roku has much to offer and as many things in life cutting cable is about compromise. If it's worth the price, keep cable, if not dump it and learn to live without it. Many folks these days are quite happily learning to live without it.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby mike1977 » Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:38 pm

It's almost time for the annual raising of prices on Dish Network. Dish America package increase plus dvr fee...

Roku only + Netflix + antenna has never looked so better!!!
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby cjcox » Fri Dec 20, 2013 1:16 pm

mike1977 wrote:Roku only + Netflix + antenna has never looked so better!!!


For me:

Roku + Netflix + Amazon Prime + Plex Media Server + Antenna (but I'm really out of range, so for me, Aereo, which is nicer anyhow)

Roku has clients for Netflix, Amazon Prime, Plex and Aereo.. so it's a really nice front end (we have 4 Roku's)

My TV bill was $120/mo.

Neflix is $8, Amazon is even less, Aereo is $8. I do have a lifetime (one time) Plex Pass, but that's so I can do Plex directly from my phone.

As long as "sports" is over the air, I'm fine... and for me, almost everything I'm interested in is over the air sports wise.

Plex handles the rest with scrapers for most of the major network sites which means I get a lot of the non-over-the-air stuff I want as well (at least for as long as it's on their website). Plex also handles my music and with PlexPass, I can queue up videos to watch on my Roku from any site with easily scraped videos (e.g. Youtube and the like). And of course, Plex is where I house all of my video rips too (547 movies and even more TV).

Basically, everything via the Roku. For what you get, is probably the cheapest most complete front end out there. I mean, you might do something with a Raspberry Pi, but it won't do everything.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby johninFL » Sat Dec 21, 2013 4:26 pm

I dropped Dish 1 1/2 yrs.ago.
Now i use my Roku w/NF,Amazon Prime,along with a few VOD services,~50 free channels incl.Pub-D-Hub Gold,and PlayOn,with all of its scripts/plugins.Add an antenna for locals and a PC for streaming live news,sports,and a handful of free movie websites,and i have all the content i could ever want. :)
No need for expensive cable/sat.packages. :twisted:

Plus i get to be my own programmer!!.i've gotten pretty darn good at programming shows,movies,news,etc.
In fact i've gotten so darn good that,in another year or so i'll be able to go pro! :lol: :lol: :lol: :shock:
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby SimpleMinded » Sat Dec 21, 2013 5:27 pm

It's been nearly four years for us. We rely primarily on broadcast television enjoying 37 unique stations. We have a DTVPal DVR on each television -- a luxury that seemed preposterous when we had Comcast -- which we use for ad hoc recordings as well as pause, rewind, fast forward, and slow motion. We have a Roku on each set as well. These are great Netflix players (I don't mind the old app at all) and provide access to 'cable like' programming via PlayOn, Plex, and, recently, native apps. This year, we added the Simple whole house DVR and the PlayLater streaming media DVR.

In all ways except one, our entertainment experience surpasses cable/satellite. The gap continues to be sports. Specifically, MLB and NHL. We are not huge fans, though, and are content to catch an occasional broadcast game plus the Big Games.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby gkl » Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:18 am

SimpleMinded wrote:It's been nearly four years for us. We rely primarily on broadcast television enjoying 37 unique stations. We have a DTVPal DVR on each television -- a luxury that seemed preposterous when we had Comcast -- which we use for ad hoc recordings as well as pause, rewind, fast forward, and slow motion. We have a Roku on each set as well. These are great Netflix players (I don't mind the old app at all) and provide access to 'cable like' programming via PlayOn, Plex, and, recently, native apps. This year, we added the Simple whole house DVR and the PlayLater streaming media DVR.

In all ways except one, our entertainment experience surpasses cable/satellite. The gap continues to be sports. Specifically, MLB and NHL. We are not huge fans, though, and are content to catch an occasional broadcast game plus the Big Games.


What these OPs who start threads like this always want is for a Roku to replicate cable, something which Roku doesn't purport to do. It's like saying, "Movies aren't the same as live plays," or "Radio is not the same as live concerts." Well, duh. For me (and many others), OTA and a Roku provides most of what we want (we don't NEED any of this). In my case, I've enhanced this with an HTPC set up and an Apple TV. Then the comparison becomes not cable OR OTA/Roku, but the marginal value of cable once you already have OTA/Roku. For me, the marginal value is significantly less than the cost. YMMV. To each his own. Only children and emotionally immature adults insist that everyone makes the same choice they make.
Last edited by gkl on Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby nocable » Sat Jan 04, 2014 4:54 pm

I finally "cut the cable". So Roku alone was not the "cable killer", but Roku, with OTA, and a laptop streaming whatever I want from the internet, along with DVDs/Blu-rays, is what I will go with now.

I like the Roku "News" option on the system.

There's all kinds of News you can stream from the internet.

I pay $35/mo for 15 Mbps.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby gkl » Sat Jan 04, 2014 11:24 pm

zm3sichi wrote:
BoloMKXXVIII wrote:Roku is not the answer to everyones high cable bill. It IS the answer for some people. Everyone gets hung up on "cutting the cable" when it isn't necessary for a Roku to save you money. With all the content that is available on the Roku for comparitively small amounts of money users may find they do not watch as much as they used to from their cable/sat provider. This should allow them to scale back the number of channels they pay for each month. After having the Roku for a while they may decide they do not need their cable/sat company at all. In any case, people considering cutting the cord should go ahead and try a Roku while keeping their current content provider so they can see for themselves what is available.


This has been my experience, so far. I saved a significant amount off of my cable content package price. But I can't get rid of cable completely since my local channels are on it (unless Aereo survives), *and* my cable co. provides the Internet bandwidth. So I have to keep them. I think if I were to cut the cable out completely, they might (eventually), jack up the Internet rates. We'll have to see. I tend to watch an equal amount of streamed content and cable content... maybe a little more cable than streamed, at this point. But it did help reduce the cable bill, and it helps in other ways by giving me access to content via streaming that I would not otherwise have. I can preview things to see if I want to buy them on optical (gotta have that "permanent license..." :mrgreen: ).


The term for this approach is cord shaving. This may be the bigger threat to the cable/satellite industry. And it won't show up in a simple count of subscribers. I suspect a lot this will happen over the next couple of years. If significant numbers of households cut back to basic cable/satellite, it would really hurt revenue for paid TV.

The original poster, however, also misrepresents what you can get with cord cutting if you live somewhere with 20+ OTA channels and high speed internet. You can get a lot of programs and programming and far more sports than anyone got before the last 20 years. Whenever I see posts like that, I suspect a shill of the cable/satellite industry posted it.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby fredneck » Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:26 pm

For us Roku has been a god send. Living on a fixed income like many folks we learn to make every penny count. Cable is a luxury not everyone can afford anymore. If I had to choose between internet or cable internet wins every time. With commercial after commercial cable lost it's appeal. Sports for some are a deal breaker fortunately for us this is not the case and we have learned to live just fine with Roku, Netflix, and the few channels we pickup on the old rabbit ears and have found good use for the money elsewhere. Glad we ditched them specially every time we hear news like Direct TV is raising their prices 3.7% again for 2014.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby povster » Thu Jan 30, 2014 10:57 am

I have been without cable (Comcast in my area) a few years now and do not miss it a bit. I have:

Netflix
HuluPlus
Amazon Prime
OTA
A laptop running hdmi tucked behind my TV. I use a cordless keyboard/mouse combo for it.)

My OTA antenna is simple: a coax cable I stripped one end off of and taped to a rolled up piece of aluminum foil. It is hidden from view along the baseboards and the foil rests out of sight on a window sill. The whole setup is invisible. Ran channel scan and 52 channels came in (I am on a hill. in a large city in CA). Many of these are Asian language or Spanish language (I speak neither but sometimes there are subtitles) and a lot of channels in English. The image quality is excellent, especially the HD channels.

What I like about especially HuluPlus is it usually saves at least the last 5 shows and usually shows the day after originally being aired. It's like having a DVR but without a monthly DVR charge. Netflix is great for, aside from movies, catching up on shows I have never seen (I recently discovered, for example, WHITE COLLAR) and got myself caught up and am now watching regular airings on Hulu.

Amazon Prime I got mainly for the free 2-day shipping but lately their streaming content has improved and is a nice adjunct to Netflix and Hulu.

The few sports I watch are taken care of with the OTA.

Actually with my setup I sometimes feel I have too MUCH content and could spend my life getting rather plump on the couch.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby KennyJ » Thu Jan 30, 2014 2:33 pm

Nothing is a cable/sat killer yet because nothing can give you everything cable/sat service offers. . .

But I've been without any paid tv service for about 3 years now and I really don't miss it at all. I don't watch sports on TV, so that parts easy. I live in the metro LA area and with my roof antenna we get every local channel in crystal clear, 99% interference free.

We pay $10/mo for Tivo, $8/mo for Netflix and roughly $6.5/mo for Amazon Prime (which we'd probably have even if they didn't offer Prime video, so I don't know if I can count it as a true TV-watching expense).

I currently pay $45/mo for 15 Mbps internet. When I had Verizon FIOS (the last time I paid for TV service) -- and our 12month deal expired, it was going to cost me $150/month for the bundle of TV, internet, phone. I currently pay $63.50 for internet, netflix, tivo, Amazon, and Ooma (voip).

I definitely save money being a cord cutter. And on top of that, I'd probably still pay for Amazon, DVR, and even possibly Netflix if I was still subscribing to cable/fios/sat.

I've also noticed that with 2 young ones at home and 1 main tv to share with my 6 year old and my wife, that I don't even have enough time to watch all the content I want to right now. I still have to catch up on my DVR, want to start watching Vikings on Amazon, and have several other seasons of shows I have yet to start.
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Re: Cable Killer?

Postby SimpleMinded » Thu Jan 30, 2014 3:12 pm

The financial benefit comes with multiple televisions. I just purchased a 60 inch plasma for my pool room. No need for a cable box or DVR. I'll tape a Roku 2 XS to the back and get my OTA via Simple.
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