For many cord cutters, online streaming is an important piece of the puzzle. You may already have explored the digital antenna piece, but for finding more entertainment options than what you get over-the-air, you may be scratching your head. There are several ways to utilize online streaming and make you sure your TV is streaming ready.
Is Streaming Right For You?
First, you’ll want to determine if online streaming is a good part of your cord-cutting solution. When Cable Alternatives comes to a home to help cut cable, the first thing we do is figure out your TV watching habits. If you have must-watch prime-time shows that you can access over-the-air with your antenna, great! But whether or not you have a digital antenna, online streaming may help meet your needs, too. Streaming is a great on-demand option and depending on what shows you want, one streaming service or several may be right. Next, we have to figure out if you’re already streaming ready.
Streaming Capable Devices
A streaming capable device connects your TV to your home’s internet via wifi and gives you access to apps such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video at the click of a button! You need a subscription to access the content of those major players, but there are other apps with free content available. There are several ways to get streaming content onto the TVs in your home, most of which involve some sort of streaming capable technology. The options you may consider:
● Streaming Media Player or Stick
● Digital Video Recorder (DVR)
● Smart TV
Within these options, there are also different products available from different brands. Let’s take a more in-depth look...
Streaming Media Player or Streaming Stick
These devices were on the forefront for streaming content directly to a TV, and they’ve improved with each new version. Devices are available from brands such as Roku, Apple, and Amazon, to name a few. As streaming devices go, Roku has options both in a stick you plug directly into your TV’s HDMI port and a media player that is a small box-like device with an HDMI cord. If you’re an Apple household and have iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers, you may prefer to use the AppleTV, which similarly is a box that plugs into your TV. And if you’re a loyal trustee of Amazon, they have the Fire Stick and Fire TV available, similar to Roku you can either plug a stick right into the back of your TV or plug in a box via an HDMI cord. This can be a great affordable option, especially if the other options aren’t for you.
First off: yes, you can use a DVR without cable! A favorite of ours is the TiVo Roamio OTA DVR – which is an over-the-air digital video recorder you can use with your digital antenna. This little box really does it all, because not only can you record shows that you get through your antenna, you can utilize your streaming services, too! While this doesn’t involve recording, the TiVo Roamio enables you to switch from programs recorded over an antenna, to watching on-demand shows or movies via streaming service.
As TV technology has changed over the years, manufacturers started making TVs with more capabilities. For instance, a smart TV is capable of streaming without adding a device. If you’re interested in upgrading your television, a smart TV just may be the way to go! Chances are, you may already have a smart TV and not even know it! Our favorite is the RokuTV by TCL because it’s the easiest to use with only one remote! What’s not to love about that?
Options are endless which means you have nothing to fear when it comes to cutting the cord. And the team at Cable Alternatives can help you every step of the way. Contact us today to arrange a cord-cutting consult by calling 763-571-1037 or schedule online.