Antenna's & Streaming

The third way to cut the cord is a combination of the first two options. You get a majority of the TV you watch for free using an over-the-air antenna while supplementing that with a streaming device.

In our example, Joe gets almost all his TV programming from the antenna. He’s able to get all the major networks (ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, PBS, CW) plus a few others like AntennaTV.

He still likes his Netflix, Amazon Prime, and his fast internet, so no savings there. He gets the Amazon Fire Stick for $40. If you remember from the first option, the antenna equipment cost him about $200 since he lives so far from the broadcast towers. His total equipment cost is $240. He decides to buy the HD (1080p) versions of Game of Thrones for $40 and Walking Dead for $42. He could have spent less by buying the SD (DVD quality) versions, but for our example he decided to splurge on the HD version.

He was paying $1,420 a year for traditional cable plus Netflix and Amazon Prime. His first year cost in this example is $240 (equipment cost) + $220 (yearly Netflix and Amazon Prime) + $40 +$42 = $542. His first year savings would be $1,420 -$542 = $878. After the first year he already owns the equipment. Unless he finds another show that he “just has to have” his yearly saving would be $878 + $240 = $1,118.

As in the streaming example, he now owns the full season both of his favorite shows in 1080p for $82 and can watch them any time he likes, where the HBO add-on alone is $15 per month ($720 a year).

Which Option Is Best For You?

Only you can decide if one of these options is right for you. Each person’s individual situation is different. You might not be able to get a reliable OTA signal where you live. Or you might have a ton of “must have” shows. There are many individual factors to take into account. Do what we did with our example cord-cutter Joe. You might find that cord-cutting isn’t right for you, at least not until the next cable price increase.

Please feel free to check out the rest of the site for more information on over-the-air antennas, streaming devices, and streaming services. And don’t forget to subscribe to the weekly newsletter to get the latest news, tips, and guides.