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RCBH928
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by RCBH928 Sun Sep 05, 2021 4:37 am

I don't understand the "cablecutters" movement... I thought they are abandoning tv altogether. Seems like they are canceling their cable subscription for other alternatives like apps, or online subscriptions which might as well be served over cable internet. Does it matter how you get the entertainment?
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by Ziggy587 Sun Sep 05, 2021 7:22 am

RCBH928 wrote:I don't understand the "cablecutters" movement... I thought they are abandoning tv altogether. Seems like they are canceling their cable subscription for other alternatives like apps, or online subscriptions which might as well be served over cable internet. Does it matter how you get the entertainment?


Yes, the cost matters. Around here, cable costs over $100/mo. Most streaming services are something like $10-20 each. If you're fine with having just one streaming service, you'll be paying a tenth of what you pay for cable. Even if you wanted multiple streaming services, you could have 5-10 different services before it's as expensive as cable. And something like Hulu + live TV, or YouTube's TV service, those are only around $50-60 a month, so still half of what cable costs. Also, a lot of people around here have Amazon Prime, which allows you to stream quite a lot.

I know a lot of people that "trade" streaming services. So they might have NetFlix but only use one profile for themselves, they allow a friend with Hulu to use their NetFlix and vice versa. And a third friend that has HBO Max or whatever. So if you're willing to do that, you end up with access to several streaming services but only pay for one or two of them.

And on top of that, you can get free over the air local HD broadcast channels for free. All you really need is an antenna. When I was born, EVERYONE around here had a roof antenna for TV. TV was something you got for FREE, and cable was an luxury thing that only rich people payed for. Now it's the opposite, and most people are completely unaware that you can still get your local channels with an antenna. And maybe some are unaware that it's now digital broadcasting, so you're either gonna get the channel or not. It's not like back in the 80's or 90's when you had to constantly deal with snowy channels because your signal was too weak. But it's kind of absurd when you think about it. You got your over the air broadcast channels for free, and that's why there's commercials (same as radio). Now people pay for expensive cable packages, just to watch mostly non-premium channels, and STILL have to watch commercials.

I think roof antennas would be more popular here, but there's two things holding it back. One, there's a huge flood of antenna for sale and most of them are garbage. So unsuspecting people buy one and don't get good results with it, then write off antenna completely. And two, even when you get a decent antenna, it require proper installation. I think the spec is at least 30 feet above the ground, which means on the roof, and most people don't want to do that. They'd rather just stick this thing on their wall and complain that they're not getting any channels. And also, even if you're willing and able to mount the antenna on your roof, it requires you to tweak the position to get the channels you want, or the most amount of channel you can, and most people just can't be bothered with things like that.

But that said, there are still plenty of people that are "cutting cable" in favor of antennas.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by Markies Sun Sep 05, 2021 1:26 pm

Ziggy587 wrote:But that said, there are still plenty of people that are "cutting cable" in favor of antennas.


I've never been a big TV guy in the first place. With that being said, I had free cable when I lived in my Apartment. When I moved from my apartment to my House, I bought an Antenna for $40 and I haven't looked back since. There is one channel that I miss from cable, but I can get that programming in other venues. Also, I don't subscribe to any streaming services as well.

Overall, I have to say that I'm kind of impressed with the amount of channels you get with Antenna. Because of the HD Channels, it is not just the major ones as I think I get like 30 or 40 channels.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by RCBH928 Mon Sep 06, 2021 6:29 am

@Ziggy

In the US you get free channels only by antenna? So no cable no tv? I thought the cable delivered free TV then you pay for the premium stuff. This is a culture clash thing. So everyone in the US that does not have an antenna is a premium cable subscriber?

Other places in the world get a lot of free channels by installing an antenna like the DirectTV one called dish. There used to be a premium tv service here but its no where as popular as it used to be in the 90s and even they went online subscription.

Another thing that needs explaining why is Netflix unlimited stream is only $10 whereas premium cable is $100? Those were 90s prices, and back then the quality difference of tv and the tech made that $100 extremely worth it honestly, I remember well. But today its a different world, any movie I want to watch is a click away either rented, subscription, or even via piracy and on my own time not by sticking to a schedule. So $100 is not acceptable.

I still don't get the cable cutters, should be more like "premium tv cutters" because on a fiber wire I think you can still get all the channels streamed live, albeit I still have this thing internet streaming as beautiful as it is , its no where as reliable as over the air streaming. TV or Radio will stream 24/7/12 without a hitch, meanwhile the internet video quality fluctuates as you are watching. One would think Fiber would have fixed that.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by Ziggy587 Mon Sep 06, 2021 7:17 am

RCBH928 wrote:In the US you get free channels only by antenna? So no cable no tv? I thought the cable delivered free TV then you pay for the premium stuff. This is a culture clash thing. So everyone in the US that does not have an antenna is a premium cable subscriber?


Yeah, the so-called "basic cable." I checked mine recently and got some channels, but they were all pretty much garbage. And I didn't see any of the local broadcast channels for some reason. It was not at all the same as the last time I used basic cable, back in the 90's. But yeah, I don't know anyone that uses basic cable. Everyone I know either has the premium local cable provider or does streaming and/or antenna.

The local cable provider has different tiers, but even with the lowest cost tier you'll still be paying upwards of $100. It's like the popcorn sizes at the movie theater. The small or medium isn't worth getting because the large is only 10 cents more. Also, you pay a fee per box and per remote. So if you're a family with cable, you could need 3-5 boxes if you have one in each bedroom and a family room or den. The last time I had cable, the box fee was $10/mo and the remote was a few dollars per month, and I think those prices have gone up since then. At least they are very good when you have any issues. They will replace or upgrade a box or remote with no questions asked. And the current package now includes a DVR service (back when I had it, it was extra for DVR). But I still think it's hardly worth it when I can get the Hulu or YouTube Live TV package for around $50/mo. Even then, I think $50/mo is too much for me to pay to watch things with commercials.

I think you're taking the word "cable" to literal. It's not referring to ANY cable, it's specifically referring to what we called "cable" for decades: Cable TV. When people say "cable" in this sense, they're not referring to a wire they're talking about a service. "Cable cutters" simply means they're doing away with the premium "cable" service.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by marurun Mon Sep 06, 2021 10:18 am

In the US there are certain core stations that are broadcast over the air like radio. That’s why those networks, ABC, NBC, and CBS, are called broadcast networks. When you get satellite or cable TV you get lots of additional channels and the broadcast stations as well (providers pay what are called retransmission fees to carry broadcast channels). The broadcast channels used to get most of their operating money from commercials, but they increasingly get it from retransmission fees. They also run local stations in every urban market.

Now, in 1996 the US announced that the classic NTSC broadcasts would be eventually phased out in favor of HD broadcasts. The new over-the-air HD broadcast signal format rollout finalized in 2009 and is completely incompatible with traditional NTSC TVs. People had to buy all new TVs with new channel tuners, or get a little box that sits on top of their old TV to tune in to the new signals. This didn’t affect people with cable or satellite, since those services continued to offer (and still do) traditional SD offerings. So anyone who used cable or satellite didn’t have to buy a new TV or get a new tuner box for an old TV. During that transition a lot of people abandoned over-the-air broadcasts.

But now almost nobody is still using a TV that can’t tune in those HD signals, but the rise in streaming services means people have sort of forgotten over-the-air broadcasts are a thing. So anyone who “cuts the cord” on cable or satellite and moves to streaming can still get the core broadcasts networks with a proper antenna. And what “cutting the cord” means is just cancelling those paid TV services.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by RCBH928 Tue Sep 07, 2021 7:13 am

@ziggy

yup I am thinking of the wire itself, is there an online service that offers the same channels on subscription tv but for less? or its always a different mix? What makes sense to me is those channels over an online subscription over the usual "cable" subscription

@marurun

thanks for the info. 1996 ->2009 wow that took seriously long time.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by Ziggy587 Tue Sep 07, 2021 6:03 pm

RCBH928 wrote:thanks for the info. 1996 ->2009 wow that took seriously long time.


Actually, it took longer than that! In fact, the last analog broadcasts in the USA were shut down just recently.

But really, no one had an HDTV in 1996. Were there even any on the consumer level? People didn't start getting HDTVs until around 2005 or so. And even then, not every one had one. 2009 was never going to stick as the deadline, and it was unsurprising that it was pushed back. What took another 12 years for every last station though, I have no idea.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by RCBH928 Wed Sep 08, 2021 7:28 am

I believe there was a Japanese laserdisc format that could output HD and then there was D-VHS around 2002 and I think I read there were HDTV maybe around 1998. What surprises is that they know HD signal back then meanwhile CRT were all analogue so where did that idea come from? And also so early in 1996 to make such claim to turn everything into HD. Maybe Maybe 2000 , but 1996 people were still playing Sega Mega Drive
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread

by marurun Wed Sep 08, 2021 9:24 am

Japan had HD CRT sets as early as 1998. With LCD technology really starting to improve much more dramatically and PC screens demonstrating for some time that higher resolutions had value, it was only a matter of time before the legacy broadcast standards had to be updated.
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