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Streaming TV and movies is easier than ever, but there are still some reasons to keep your cable TV service. Before you ask “Should I cancel cable?” consider the advantages and disadvantages of cable TV.
Advantages and disadvantages of cable TV
There are many advantages and disadvantages to a cable TV subscription. For some, the cost may be a big concern leading them to cut the cord. Others though may keep a cable TV subscription because they’re getting a good deal on a bundle or don’t want to miss out on any of the live sports action.
Some things to consider when thinking about whether you should cancel cable:
- Favorite programs – Are your favorite shows only available through a cable TV plan or can you get them On Demand or with a TV antenna?
- Price – Will an internet-only plan cost less, the same or more? You may find that an internet and TV bundle will actually save you money.
- Negotiation – Is your current cable TV provider willing to negotiate and lower your rate or add in other perks to keep you as a customer?
- Sports – This is often a big one when deciding whether to cut the cord. If you’re a big sports fan, you may find that keeping your cable TV plan is the best option. Although, many streaming services now offer the ability to watch major sports teams play.
- Viewing habits – If you actually use your cable TV subscription regularly or simply enjoy channel flipping, it may be worth keeping cable.
What are the benefits of cable TV?
There are a number of benefits to having a cable TV subscription. Some of the major ones include:
Live sports and all the drama that comes with it
Netflix is good, but you won’t find the Super Bowl or Olympics there. If you’re a sports fan, you’ll want at least a basic cable or satellite TV package to watch your favorite teams and sports. Sure, you might be able to get highlights online or watch the game later, but that doesn’t come close to the excitement of watching it live. While you may be able to find live streams of sports where you live, this isn’t an option for many.
Pay-per-view, new movies and On Demand titles
If over-the-top services entice you with the freedom to pick and choose what you watch, cable and satellite TV services give you that same freedom and then some. Most cable providers offer access to thousands of On Demand titles, which are available when — and where — you want them. Plus, you can also order pay-per-view events such as boxing and MMA matches, or new movie releases, often before they’re available on streaming services.
You won’t have to rely on internet
When using streaming services to watch your favorite shows and movies, you’ll be largely relying on your internet connection. This can become a problem if there are internet outages due to weather or provider problems. Relying on internet speed to watch your shows can be a struggle, especially if it’s a peak traffic time, when internet speeds can slow. And, for those living in more rural areas, where internet connections can be slower, buffering could become an issue.
So, before you cut the cord, think about your TV habits. Do you enjoy live sports, want On Demand options before they’re on streaming services or can’t stand to miss an event? You may find that a cable TV subscription is right for you.
Originally published 7/01/14. Last updated 09/30/20.
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Written by:Shannon Ullman
Editor, Broadband & Wireless Content
Shannon is an editor for the Allconnect team who has been writing and editing content for the past eight years. Prior to Allconnect, she was an editor for DecisionData.org and ISP.com. Shannon’s career began a… Read more
Edited by:Trey Paul
Editor, Head of Content
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