Save money on your cable bill. Cut your cable bill in half!
What is Cable Cutting? Simply put it is canceling your TV service. Now many of us go through the cable company for more than just TV so you may not be canceling all the services. We also get telephone service, Internet service, and sometimes even cell phone service through these service providers. In this article, we will talk about the TV portion of Cable Cutting and what to look for when you analyze broadband Internet service. You should take a look at your phone service as well. There is little reason you should be paying up to $50 a month or more for simple phone service as some of the cable providers want you to pay.
Some Cable Cutter options for phone service are switching to VoIP service or depend solely on your smartphone as many people have started to do. https://www.pcmag.com/picks/the-best-business-voip-providers
I cut the cable about 6 years ago. I will admit I am not a big sports fan and get all my news from the Internet. I never looked back. I scaled my cable package back to just Internet service. I think the internet service speed I started at was 50Mbps 6 years ago. The two streaming services I started with, were Netflix and Hulu. My reasoning for starting with those two streaming services, Netflix would give me Movies and Hulu TV would stream my TV shows. Since then I have added Amazon Prime Video and Disney+ as paid services. I also use a couple of free services, Tubi and Pluto TV. Youtube is used heavily. Youtube is great especially if you just want to veg, flipping between many short videos.
According to NoCable.org there were 18 million cord-cutters in 2018. This year the number will have increased to 28+ million, that’s an increase of 10 million new cable-cutters in 3 years. (https://nocable.org/learn/cable-tv-cord-cutting-statistics/)
When looking at purchasing an Internet connection there are a few items you need to look at. The first item to review when choosing an Internet provider is the connection speed they can provide. Yes, more is better however it also depends on how many people are in your household. If you are single or a couple you won’t need the top-level bandwidth to get your streaming needs covered. If you have a big household with higher-level streaming needs you will need to consider a higher amount of bandwidth. You can certainly test bandwidth amounts and decide what’s best for your household. Internet providers have no problem raising your bandwidth as needed.
The next part of the service to review is if the service provider puts any bandwidth limits on their service. This is directed more at smartphone data services but your internet providers might also have bandwidth usage caps. Smartphone data services will lower the bandwidth rate if you hit the cap making video or internet surfing choppy and slow. These services may also hit you with extra charges, once you hit the data cap, depending on the contract. Unlimited data doesn’t always mean unlimited data.
The third is how the Internet gets to your apartment or house. Some Internet services come directly to your house so you have a dedicated pipeline to the Internet. Other Internet service providers just provide a specific bandwidth rate to a neighborhood. The Internet bandwidth in this case is then split between everyone in the neighborhood. Most of the time this will not negatively affect standard streaming however as more people cut cable and Internet usage goes up sharing bandwidth will cause slower choppy service. There is another drawback to sharing bandwidth, gamers will see a much higher level of lag. If you have gamers in your household this is an important part of the service to review before signing up for service.
Talking about contracts…I had to switch between Internet providers a few times either because of price increases or because I found the service provided wasn’t reliable enough for streaming and gaming.
Is Cable Cutting right for you? You can easily test if this new Cable Cutting lifestyle is right for you. Most people at least in the U.S. already have the necessary requirements. So if you have a broadband internet connection and either a smart TV or DVD player or a gaming system you can get started. You might already have Amazon Prime for free shipping, if that’s the case then you also have Amazon’s basic streaming service. Don’t worry if you don’t have Prime, you can sample streaming via other services. You can see what’s on PlutoTV, Crackle, Tubi, or VUDO. Each of these streaming services has a free package.
Reasons to Cable Cut
- Cost of Cable packages compared to streaming
- We only watch the same 3 channels and pay for 160 channels we don’t watch or can’t understand.
- We want to watch what we want to watch when we want to watch it.
- Nothing good on regular TV
Reasons not to Cable Cut
- Can’t find the streaming version of channels you watch
- Local news
- You like scrolling through the TV show menu
- Broadband Internet Service
- Cable company internet service
- Mobile phone unlimited data service
- Satelite unlimited data service
|Service Provider||Website Link|
|Amazon Prime||Site Link|
|Pluto TV||Site Link|
|Sling TV||Site Link|
|HBO Max||Site Link|
|HBO Now||Site Link|
|Direct TV Now||Site Link|
|Acorn TV||Site Link|
|PBS Frontline||Site Link|
|PBS Passport||Site Link|
|FUBO TV||Site Link|
|Sony Playstation Video||Site Link|
|AT&T TV||Site Link|
Some of you might not be ready to cut the cable just yet but would still like to reduce your cable bill. If you want to lower your cable bill but not cancel it completely, the first thing to do is evaluate the overall package you signed up for with your cable provider. Do you really need all those movie channels? Can you downgrade to a lower package and still get most of the channels you watch? Maybe you can substitute a lower-priced streaming service for a more expensive cable service movie package.
You also might be able to reduce the overall cost of your service price by negotiating the monthly price with your cable provider. Cable companies routinely give customers an introductory rate (that should really be the standard rate), and then raise the price at the end of the year and probably every year after. Pretty soon you are paying $30 to $50 dollars extra for the same service you signed up for initially. There is a way to solve this issue but it’s not to call customer service at the cable company. You need to call the cancellation department. Tell the Cancellation representative you are going to cancel your service unless they lower the cost of their service. In most cases, they will work with you to lower the rate but you need to make sure you have a backup plan.
***When trying this above tactic you need to make sure there are at least two cable providers in your area. This will be your backup in the event the cable company doesn’t want to negotiate and you really decide to cancel. With two or more cable providers available you need to make sure you have another service to go to and/or you have prepped your stream services just in case the Cable company cancels your service.