Is it Time to Cut your Cable Bill?

Here are the most popular options


Netflix has been one to the most popular streaming services across the country

Sam Janis, Co-Editor-in-Chief

By 2021, roughly 51 million people are expected to have cut their ties with cable in favor of streaming services. Companies such as Hulu and Netflix are industry stalwarts but are not the only names in the business. DirecTV Now, Sling, Youtube TV, and Playstation Vue are popular options that provide viewers with live TV.

Most of the higher end streaming options sit at around $40 a month. All of these services are good in their own ways, some provide viewers with original TV shows/movies while some provide cheaper alternatives to cable television.

Netflix is by far the most well known and most popular. Netflix does not have any live television, but more than makes up for it with a seemingly endless array of movies and TV shows. Netflix also has wildly popular originals including “Stranger Things,” “Orange is the New Black,” and “Roma.” Netflix’s selections are updated at least once a month, moving the old and bringing in the new.

Netflix is also one of the only services to have downloadable content. You can download movies and TV shows from a large selection, and watch them anywhere, with or without service. Netflix still has plans for their once very popular mail order system to receive DVDs of films or TV series not on their website. Prices range from $9 to $16 per month for streaming and $8 to $15 for DVD service.

Hulu is like Netflix, in that it focuses on on-demand selections for movies and TV shows. However, Hulu does provide a live TV option. Hulu does have some original content including “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “Castle Rock.” Hulu is owned by major TV conglomerates including Disney/Fox, Comcast, and AT&T. Most of the selections are from these company’s production wings. Hulu ranges from $7.99 to $39.99, from streaming with commercials to live TV.

If you want to “cut the cords,” these are the services to look at. DirecTV Now is a live television provider for people who don’t want long term contracts with a cable provider. Members can stream 65+ shows and have DVR with a subscription. The subscription comes at four different price ranges, ($40-$75) including more stations as you increase the price. You can also add HBO, Starz, Cinemax, and Showtime for an additional cost. The base prices allow for two people to stream at one time and you can pay extra for additional streamers.

Sling TV, like DirecTV, now is about cutting cords and cable services. Sling TV provides three different options, Sling Orange, Sling Blue, and a combination of the two. The color plans are $25 dollars each, with the combination at $40. For an extra $5, you can add a DVR to the subscription.

PlayStation Vue is very similar to the other options. You don’t need a PlayStation to stream the service. You can have up to five devices streaming at one time for no additional cost. The price ranges from $44.99 to $79.99. The cheapest option, Access, includes popular live TV while the most expensive includes live TV, movies, sports, and other premium channels. The DVR on the service allows customers to store as many episodes as they want for up to 28 days.

Streaming services have slowly become more popular as time goes on and cable becomes more expensive. Streaming services are very convenient for people who don’t want to pay for all of the channels that cable provides. For significantly less money, people can watch what they want, when they want, for a price they want.