by Marvin Glass.
Formerly the ultimate source for feeding celebrity obsessions and comedy jones, cable television now enjoys a spot among the most divisive of conversation topics. Television buffs remain dedicated to the setup, pointing to what the New York Times refers to as the inherent superiority of cable dramas. But others view cable as an overpriced means of viewing shows already available on such streaming services as Netflix and Hulu Plus. These naysayers continue to cut cable cords in droves, as Forbes notes, with more than 400,000 American households ditching their cable subscriptions in the early months of 2012.
If you’re like the majority of Americans, you remain somewhere in the middle of these two debates. You like cable programming but have grown weary of paying for channels you never watch. And with new child-friendly options available on Netflix, you feel that streaming could be a better option for your family. But are you ready to join hundreds of thousands of viewers and cut that cord?
Original Series On Streaming Services
The prime argument in favor of cable is the ability to keep up to date with today’s hottest television shows. “Breaking Bad,” “Mad Men,” “Veep” — new episodes of these and other hit series remain available only through cable. But for those willing to wait while enduring the possibility of spoilers, the entirety of cable’s best series can be accessed at a later time through Netflix, Amazon Instant and Hulu Plus.
Until current favorites appear on streaming services, several alternative hits provide ample entertainment. For example, Upstart Business Journal highlights the Emmy-winning “House of Cards” as a “binge-worthy” Netflix exclusive series, capable of upsetting cable’s hold on the television drama genre. Likewise, Huffington Post critics regard Hulu Plus original “Quick Draw” as a refreshing approach to the supposedly exhausted world of Western comedy.
The Importance of Reliable Internet Service
Many cable adherents maintain that their monthly television bills are worthwhile, simply because when the Internet goes down, cable TV remains easily accessible. Why not avoid such a calamity by investing in a higher quality Internet connection? Dial-up just won’t cut it anymore, which is why, as dsl.com points out, you’ll find far more on VDSL in terms of accessible online opportunities. With the Internet up and running at all times, there’s no need to settle for the usual cable programming. And given your entire family’s need for continuously functioning Internet, this approach kills two birds with one stone.
Cable Streaming Opportunities
Amazon Instant, Hulu Plus and Netflix are not the only providers capable of profiting from the streaming setup. Multiple cable outlets have taken the cue of these streaming services, suggesting the possibility of a la carte online viewing, as opposed to the usual constrained television packages. Salon highlights TBS and TNT’s plan to provide content for streaming across multiple platforms, and not just to cable subscribers. CNN intends to follow suit, already working with BuzzFeed to create a brand new YouTube channel. Networks such as Lifetime and TLC already place top reality shows online and others are sure to follow in their footsteps. If this trend continues, viewers will enjoy online access to recent episodes for a vast array of hit shows, reducing the need for cable subscriptions.
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