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Roku/Google TV, vs DirecTv/Cable

Discussion in 'Computers, Home Theater & Technology' started by diehardbuckeye, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. Wondering if any of you have cancelled Direct/Cable for these services? We are thinking of cancelling DirecTv because of cost and are looking into these options. I understand that would only be able to watch live broadcasts of shows if I get an antenna or keep services. I also understand that I am going to have to subscribe to Hulu and or Netflix in order to watch many shows. My main questions are

    1. How do you watch live programming? If I go Sony can I just stream live TV from a networks site, i.e. the Buckeyes are playing on the BTN and I have to watch through that.

    2. How far behind are the service sites, Hulu/Netflix? I realize I might not be able to sit at the watercooler and talk Seinfeld on Friday morning.

    3. How far back do the service sites go? I binge watch some shows and have fallen behind on a few of them but still want to keep up with story lines.

    4. What "extra/hidden" costs am I looking to encounter while using these new services? I know startup equipment, but are there oh you need this, that etc...

    Thanks for any help people can provide.
     
  2. buckeyebri

    buckeyebri Reach down between my legs...

    To add on to this, what is the point of the Google Plug in they advertise and why would I need it if I have a hulu or netflix account and a tv/ipad/computer that has internet access? These all have apps to watch them.
     
  3. CentralMOBuck

    CentralMOBuck Senior

    The point of google plug in is so you can access their content (music, movies, etc.). If you already have the means to do this with a ipad/tv/computer then you don't need a Google TV box or a chromecast.
     
  4. scarletmike

    scarletmike Researching the Magic!

    In addition, you can't access BTN2Go (or WatchESPN) without an existing cable/satellite subscription, so for live sports you're pretty much screwed, I believe, unless it is on an OTA network.
     
  5. LostLassie

    LostLassie Am I Allowed To Say That? '17 BPCFFB II Champ

    I have a Roku device (gift from a year ago so I don't know what it cost). I like it. Once you buy the Roku, there are no fees for it--you just need an internet connection. My Roku can be wired or wireless. I pay the $7.99 or so a month to Netflix (first month free offers are always out there). Not a big fan of Hula because the last time I looked, they had commercials tagged onto their shows. But, I think I've seen them advertising current episodes available, and they are also a minimal monthly fee, compared to cable. Should be able to do a free trial with them. Netflix has a big library. Even on my minimal megs internet, it works just fine. Programs rotate periodically, there are bunches of TV series--Dexter, Supernatural, Walking Dead, Sherlock--too many to list. Older shows like Mystery Science Theater, too. Current shows usually get updated to the most recent once a season ends. Normally, a TV series on Netflix will have episodes from the first year to the most recently completed. Lots of new movies, documentaries. Netflix has also branched out with producing their own series--most recent one I watched was a supernatural themed show. Amazon also has a ginormous library, and many of them are free if you subscribe to Amazon Prime. You can also pay a one-time fee to view.

    Besides Netflix, there is a huge menu available on Roku of other channels, lots of which are free. Warner Brothers has started a subscription service with their films available. Redbox and similar companies all have films for a small monthly fee and usually come with a couple weeks to a month free trial. Showtime & SyFy Channel are free and have extras like ComicCon interviews, as well as some full episodes. (When Dexter was about to end, Showtime had the first episodes of each season.) A&E and History Channel are a couple I added recently. They have selected full episodes.
    You'll need to go online with lots of the channels to activate them, but unless they say otherwise, there's no fee. You go to the designated website and enter the code shown on Roku. It's pretty much instantaneous, and that unlocks access to more shows.

    Some of the better free services that I like are the Ted Talks--huge library of presentations, PBS and Smithsonian are there, the MIT Open Courseware is there if you're into that--full-length lectures for a whole semester on, for example, electromagnetism by their Physics professor. Other schools also have channels. There are other less mainstream offerings like Jim Herold's Paranormal Podcast, UFOs. Tons of misc. religious channels, exercise from yoga to whatever, on and on.

    Aside from that, I've had fairly decent results with a $14 antenna from Best Buy--get all the major channels, PBS, plus the stray low-budget second-hand rerun stations. I'm using WOW right now, though. They don't mind negotiating. I had internet, HD cable, and local phone for @$96, then after a couple months threatened to leave them for Time-Warner, so they knocked my monthly down to $78.
     
  6. I'm really looking into the Sony Internet Player with Google TV with hopes of using it to stream live shows, i.e. sports, through the channels site in hopes that I can watch games. Would I be able to do possibly do this with either the Sony or Roku?
     
  7. OHSportsFan

    OHSportsFan Fan of Ohio Sports in Indy

    I've had the cable cord cut for about 6 months now and survived minimally with an antenna and internet streams (shh!)

    But, I'm contemplating stepping up a level to something similar- Netflix/Hulu combo to get more. Looking at a Chromecast as an early entry to this.

    It seems like we're so close to being able to cut the cord entirely if it wasn't for live sports. Only thing that tempts me to go back...
     
  8. Live sports are the only thing that have me sitting on the fence about "cutting the cord". I am about to go pull the trigger now and watch tonight's game as my last item viewed with DirecTv. The wife keeps saying to do it and if we don't like it go back to the dish and get the new customer discounts since they don't offer squat to existing customers. I'm just worried that if I pull the trigger I'm going to be out $300-400 initially and the have this extra equipment just sitting around.
     
  9. Taosman

    Taosman Flatten the Curve

    I went from DirecTV sat to DirecTVNow and upgraded my fiberoptic service to 40mbps. I'm using a Roku Stick as a streamer. My total bill went from $120 to $76. I get Big Ten Net, ESPN, Fox Sports and ABC Albuqurque as well as CBS On Demand(Star Trek Discovery and my wife gets some CBS shows she likes. I get 20G of cloud DVR service. All my computers benefit from the speed increase as well as my Tidal Music service. There is some clunkiness to the Roku Stick software and remote but I can live with that. Since ATT/DirecTV plans to move from sat to fiberoptic cable anyway I'm ahead of the curve for now.
     
  10. Taosman

    Taosman Flatten the Curve

    Last edited: Mar 24, 2019
  11. Taosman

    Taosman Flatten the Curve

  12. EasternBuck

    EasternBuck Sophmore

    Have any of you been following the next Elon Musk business venture where he hopes to provide fiber type internet speeds (up and down) to all locations, even deep country areas, by satellite?
    If you live in an area like me, country, woods and farms, internet speeds are a big limiting factor. I’ve looked into satellite based services a few different times over the past 10-15 years. Sadly, the upload speeds have been the breaking point in the technology for me. So, I’ve been forced to stick with DSL, as it’s my only option for high speed service. I get 25 down and 1.5 up.
    Musk’s new business vision uses a new satellite based technology implementation that has 3 shells, or layers, of satellites at various depths or distances from earth. These shells would handle various tasks but together they hope to get fiber type of speeds nearly anywhere. And they hope to sign American based military services as one of their first customers.
    I hope they are able to accomplish this, it would be awesome for my area. But it’s also more crap in our nights sky. Thoughts?
     
    Thump likes this.
  13. MililaniBuckeye

    MililaniBuckeye The satanic soulless freight train that is Ohio St Staff Member Tech Admin

    Has any service other than DirecTV come out with 4K content?
     
  14. Magua

    Magua Buckeye

    I've been somewhat following it. There are currently 3 different companies working on putting this technology into space over the next 2 years, however Elon's is furthest along at this point. Basically, think of it as Mesh Technology on a global scale with satellites. One concern I would have is that it requires ground connectivity from "stations" placed all over the world that are connected to the internet, and then the satellites would connect to those stations which then provides satellite internet service to you. In short, there's an extra point of failure and "hop" for all internet traffic.

    Still, as you pointed out for anyone limited to slower speeds this will be HUGE.
     

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