How do you save money by dumping cable?  You have likely heard about how many people are leaving cable or “cord cutting” to save money streaming TV.  This is how to do it when you are ready.


The Ultimate Cord Cutter’s Guide To Save Big $$$ – UPDATED



Main Cable Replacement Live TV Streaming Options

pros :  lowest entry price $20/mo, can get free locals with ota built into their box with free local dvr if you can get locals over the air, easiest service to customize your channel lineup based upon low price, great international lineup of add on options
cons :  small dvr limit, missing the most popular channels (by ratings) on cable fox news & nickelodeon and most locals

pros :  most people seem to agree that their $60/mo package is the biggest and most well rounded of the “skinny bundles”, can add on hbo for just $5/mo, fastest growing service, serious discounts when bundled with att wireless
cons :  missing key app store apps like xbox but they are expected, currently negotiating with nfl so missing those 2 cable channels

YouTube TV  >
pros :  great low price for sports fans, just $40/mo includes a lot of channels
cons :  missing many if not most non sports channels like food network & mtv

Hulu with Live TV  >
pros :  low price way to add live tv to a very good hulu on demand lineup, now can integrate hbo and espn and other top tier channels into your hulu on demand
cons :  missing many channels with no way to add them with add on packages or higher tiers, dvr fee seems high for this new industry

PlayStation VUE  >
pros :  dvr included with all plans, works on almost all platforms not just playstation
cons :  smaller lineup than directv now and even sling tv (but these might be your favorite channels so still check them out), new price is just ok


KlowdTV >
this is more of an add on service or unbelievably cheap way to watch some live tv at just $9.99/mo, it is missing most channels and has some channels no one else offers making it a great add on service


Which is right for you?

Lowest Cost To Have Some Live TV?     Sling TV!  With it’s low entry price and ease to pick and choose semi a la carte programming this is great for someone looking to cord shave.  To get the most out of their service I’d suggest you buy their subsidized AirTV box and integrate free over the air local channels into your sling tv guide.

Closest To Getting Back Your Favorite Parts of Cable Without The High Cost?    DirecTV Now!  Without question the best option for coming back to a well rounded large bundle but without the high cost.  They currently are really trying to make their customers happy which is a nice change from cable of yesteryear.

Best Deal For Sports Fans?   Youtube TV!  But they are missing most non sports programming besides live locals.  And they simply don’t offer the channels I as a non-sports fan care about.  But since reports are they pay $36 a month to programmers for your service that cost you $35 it is definitely a great deal for sports fans! (They don’t have all the sports channels just like all the services, so check to see if they have the channel you care about)

Best Deal For Premium Movie Fans?   DirecTV Now!  By far with their $5 HBO price they win this!

Best Place for DVR Fans?   None right now, they all have work to go on getting it great.  DirecTV Now looks like they will win this when the dvr comes out of beta.

Best Picture Quality?  They all offer every station in HD.  They are all OK to great.  But Sling TV even on HQ setting looks faded on my Big 55″ screen and fine on my smaller screens, which is likely done intentionally to save on their bandwidth costs.  DirecTV Now plans to offer 4k channels soon making them your best bet if you have big tv’s and expect great picture quality.

Play more games than watch TV? What should you use?   sling tv, you tube tv, hulu with live tv are on xbox and directv now likely soon  —  and of course if you play playstation psvue is available for you



What else should I add on to the above service?

Netflix, KlowdTV, Youtube Red, Hulu without Live TV, VRV by Crunchyroll, Curiosity Stream  are your best bets, although you likely won’t want all of them all the time

An antenna for free broadcast channels!!!


Where should I stream and buy/rent premium movies and shows?

I use and love VUDU, they don’t own a platform they care about so you can use it anywhere with no concerns about future fights between platform owners (ie XBOX or Roku, Apple or Windows, Android or iOS, or whatever).

Your other best bets are Microsoft Movies & TV, Apple’s iTunes, Amazon, Google Play Store.


What should I stream on?

Xbox One X if you can afford it, save some money but still amazing Xbox One S.  Otherwise if on a budget I suggest Roku because both of these platforms have a truly open app store allowing for many apps you will likely grow attached to but may be missing on other hardware platforms.

Your other options are Playstation, AirTV ( by sling tv), Fire TV by Amazon, Apple TV.

They all offer 4k TV options, but I would strongly recommend learning about HDR10 and make sure your device and tv can support this as well as 4k.  Xbox chose this standard for HDR and it is quickly becoming supported by all and likely will become the HDR standard.


What speed internet do I need?

For most cord cutters (single or couples) 25mb connection is perfect even with 1 4k tv and an xbox.  For families you may want 50mb-100mb connection.

A single stream is typically 5megs  and  12megs for 4k.   So 4 hd streams can fit on a 25meg account with left over space for Facebook and email usage.



Keep up with our extensive reporting on Streaming and Cutting the Cord in our Streaming / Cutting Cord Category :


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What service is this channel on?

A&E  (directv now, sling, hulu)
AMC  (directv now, sling, ps vue, youtube tv)
AHC – American Heroes Channel  (directv now, ps vue)
Animal Planet  (directv now, ps vue)
Audience Channel  (directv now)
AWE  (directv now, century link)
Baby TV  (directv now, sling tv)
BBC America
BBC World News
Blaze, The  (sling TV, century link)
BeIN Sports
Big Ten Network
Campus Insider
Cartoon Network / Adult Swim
CBS Sports Net
CBN TV Channel 24/7 (part time on Freeform, currently the 24/7 channel not integrated into any service yet)
CBN News Channel 24/7 (part time on Freeform, currently the 24/7 channel not integrated into any service yet)
CNBC World
CNN  (directv now, sling, ps vue)
CNN International
Comedy Central
Crime & Investigation
Cooking Channel
Destination America
Discovery Family
Discovery Life
Disney Channel
Disney Jr
Disney XD
DIY Network
Duck TV
NBC Sports Net
Stingray Music (klowd tv)