More and more people are choosing to cut the cord. I’m talking about cutting the cord that connects us to cable television. There is a growing debate over whether to make the move to a life without instant access to more channels than you can even remember. If you subscribe to cable or satellite, such as Comcast or DirectTV, the odds are that they have more channels than you could ever watch. Yet you’re paying for all those channels every month.
Only about 19% of American households now live without cable television. However, those who cut that cord, very few actually experience any remorse. The decision to cut the cord is not irrevocable in that you can always return to cable, but very few people do.
It is important to understand that cutting the cord typically means swapping one large monthly bill for a number of smaller bills as you try to replicate the content that you want. For instance, an HBO standalone subscription without a cable package will cost about $15 a month. This is about the same as what consumers already pay their local cable company to add HBO to their services, however, there is not vase package. To get HBO’s standalone service, you will need to purchase either an Apple TV for about $69.00, or get Sling TV and a compatible device (Roku or Amazon Fire) for about $120.
If you’re a movie addict, you probably already subscribe to Netflix’s streaming service, paying $7.99 a month. You can also pay Hulu the same amount a month for access to a year’s worth of many of my favorite television shows and movies that aren’t otherwise available. This means you don’t have to set up and manage a DVR and you’re not constrained by its capacity. Also consider paying $99 a year for Amazon Prime for their online streaming video content.
It makes good sense to give everything a dry run before cutting the cord. In other words, set up your system before canceling cable. Unlike cable companies, which require you to lock yourself into a one to two year commitment and impose penalties if you pull out before they expire, Netflix, Hulu, and Sling don’t have such penalties. You can cancel anytime.