Live Streaming or Cable Television?

by David

Back in the good old days, watching television was a family past time

Where after a day of hard work, every member of the joint family would gather around the television, with the kids on the floor and the elders on a cot, and eagerly wait to hear the music announcing the airing of the Doordarshan channel which was the only channel available then.

When you fast-forward to today’s world, you begin to see how much has changed.

Doordarshan has long been replaced by various other channels which target different age groups, which results in each member of a family is wanting to watch different shows.

Also, one no longer has the time to sit around the couch to watch their favourite shows at their scheduled time.

This has resulted in many applications like Hotstar, which legally air these shows on their sites online after they have been telecast on television.

This has led to more and more people cutting the cord.

What is Cord-Cutting?

Earlier, users would buy channels and connect them to their television with a cable cord and enjoy their services.

Cord-cutting refers to the pattern of viewers, also known as cord-cutters, cutting their cords, or cancelling their subscription and instead opting for other online services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, which provide similar services.

It is estimated that an approximate of six people cut the cord every minute.

An increasing number of people are cutting the cord for many valid reasons, some of which are:

Live-Streaming, when compared to the traditional form of cable television is extremely cheap.

While cable television can be estimated to cost around a hundred dollars, live streaming from the internet costs only forty dollars.

Moreover, cable television also has hidden costs, and cable service providers tend to keep increasing the cost of subscribing to a channel or a set of channels whereas, live streaming is very cheap and consumers also have the option to pay the subscription fee in a lump sum and avail discounts.

Live streaming from various applications like Netflix and Hotstar has one more advantage in terms of content.

On these live streaming applications, in addition to those shows which air on television, there is a lot more content available in terms of series and short films as well as documentaries and full-length feature films.

Another advantage is that a consumer can watch whatever they want at their convenience, as opposed to being forced to watch whatever is airing on television at that given point in time.

These applications also allow a customer to download and watch their shows or movies later, even when they are not connected to the internet.

It is these two features that are pushing more and more people to cut the cord.

What is Live Streaming?

Live streaming TV functions like a regular cable TV, with the sole objective of providing top quality entertainment at minimum costs.

Ideally, live television streams all the content of television channels on the internet but, I the recent days it has also come to publish full-length feature films for those who missed them in the theatre, short films, documentaries and shows that were created especially for that particular live streaming site.

Live streaming has caught on with the audience due to many reasons, the primary being convenience.

With live streaming facilities, it is possible for a consumer to download and view an episode t a time that is convenient for them as opposed to when it is aired.

Also, live streaming television offers a lot more in terms of entertainment and content than traditional television ever did.

What are the advantages of Live-Streaming?

As mentioned earlier, an increasing number of people, teenagers and adults alike, are switching over to live to stream from the internet over the traditional subscribed cable TV.

There is an umpteen number of reasons for this switch, some of them being:

Streaming online from the internet is a lot cheaper when compared to the price that consumers normally pay to watch and avail the same or similar services over cable television. What’s more is that, typically, cable television comes with hidden costs.

Also, a single cable operator doesn’t offer all the channels, implying that a customer will have to subscribe to multiple cable suppliers, making it extremely costly.

On the other hand, on live streaming services, there are no hidden costs, and all shows can be viewed with one account.

With cable television to cancel your subscription, a cancellation fee needs to be paid, whereas, with online streaming, no such fee is paid and sometimes, one may also get a refund.

Streaming online offers more entertainment than cable television, as many production houses lease, sell or grant digital streaming houses the right to stream their work.

It is also very convenient to stream services online because a customer can view the episode or show at their convenience.

They can also download episodes to watch later when they are not connected to the internet.

Moreover, sometimes these digital streaming centres are granted exclusive rights to stream episodes or show a couple of hours before they are officially broadcast, thus allowing customers to view a particular episode earlier.

Live-streaming over the internet is also faster and more efficient. Also, an added advantage of online streaming is that it doesn’t have as many advertisement breaks as a traditional cable television would allot.

Of course, online streaming is not free from advertisements but, the time assigned to them is shorter and more often than not, these advertisements can be skipped.

What are the best live television services for cord cutters?

There are several places, sites and applications from where a cable cutter can stream television services online. Some of them are:

  • Amazon Prime is comparatively cheap and also comes with a host of benefits such as speedy delivery when an order is placed online.
  • BS All access
  • Direct Tv
  • ESPN+
  • HBO Now
  • Hulu with Live TV
  • Netflix
  • Hotstar

Gone are the days when we had to make time to catch a particular episode on TV. Now with live streaming of television services, a consumer can avail many more services, if they cut the cord.

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