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Last year we decided to get rid of cable during the spring and summer months. We figured we could save some money and spend more time outside anyway. In our house, the tv is pretty much always on, even if no one is really watching anything. I guess we have it for background noise and something to catch your eye every now and then. Most of the shows we follow are fall shows and we watch football in the fall, so we thought it wouldn’t be too hard to give cable up for awhile.
I know that some people have luck using an HDTV antenna. We’ve tried several different antennas, but I haven’t found one that works for our townhouse development yet. I’ll be trying a few more before I give up. With an HDTV antenna, you should be able to pick up all of the local channels and all major TV networks free of charge over-the-air.
We actually use our Panasonic Blu-Ray Player to access these, but you can also use your PS3, Wii, or Xbox 360.
I think Hulu Plus is pretty necessary if you want to watch the new shows. With most tv shows, you can watch them the next day on Hulu Plus. Shows that I make sure to watch the next day are Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy, Parenthood, Hell’s Kitchen, all of my favorite ABC Family shows and so many others. Of course, with Hulu Plus we can also watch some of Charlie’s favorite tv shows that he used to watch on Sprout: Caillou, SuperWhy, Barney, and Thomas. Hulu Plus has movies, but I haven’t had much luck finding newer movies on there. I use it for tv shows.
Hulu Plus runs $7.99/month, but you can try 1 week for free!
Netflix has tv shows and movies. Netflix has tons of tv shows and they are constantly adding more. You can see my 10 Most Binge-Worthy Shows on Netflix here. Netflix carries a lot of Disney Junior shows as well as Disney movies! This is awesome because we were worried about missing Jake or Mickey! Not with Netflix! Like Hulu Plus, we can access Caillou, SuperWhy, Barney, Thomas, and a few other PBS/Sprout shows. They are constantly adding new movies, so you won’t get tired of the same thing over and over again. With Netflix, there’s something for everyone! You can set up profiles on Netflix so each person can see their own shows and get their own recommendations.
Netflix is also $7.99/month, but you can get your first month free!
Amazon Prime has tv shows and movies that you can watch. With Amazon Prime, you also get a Kindle book to borrow for free each month from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library and free 2-day shipping on millions of items. Amazon Prime is the only one of these three options that has Nick Jr shows: Umizoomi, Bubble Guppies, Dora, Blue’s Clues, etc. Like the other two options, they also have Caillou and SuperWhy! Again, Amazon Prime is not just for the kids, there is definitely something everyone can watch! Most shows you can watch up to the previous season and will need to pay per episode for the current season.
Amazon Prime is $99.99/year, which breaks down to $8.33/month. You can get your first 30 days for free!
As you can see, they’re all pretty much the same price. What really matters is what you intend to watch. Go ahead and try out each one and see what you like best!
Do you think you could do without cable? Have you tried any of the above services?