Cutting The Cord: Step One
For the month of May I, Andrew Schwegler, will be living life without a cable connection. Entertainment I consume will only be accessed on my laptop, tablet, and set-top box. In this introductory article, I'll cover what tools and tricks I plan on using to make life livable for this 24 year old media-addict without cable or satellite.
Roku 3I am the recent, proud owner of a Roku 3. Yes, I could play Angry Birds on it. No, I have never played Angry Birds on it. What I have taken advantage of is the faster load times and better video quality achieved from the nearly doubled-in-speed processor compared to my former Roku box (a Roku 2 HD that is currently resting in my parent's room in their house).
MacBook AirMy laptop of choice is a year-and-a-half old MacBook Air. I chose it for its weight. My day jobs as a web developer and 'social marketing guru'1don't require too much horse-power and I can still squeeze a full day out of a single battery charge.
Galaxy Note 10.1When I sold my iPad 3 in December and purchased one of these, I was called crazy. I was probably crazy but, at the time, I was spread across every possible eco-system and wanted to consolidate as much as possible. I settled on Google Play as my eco-system of choice and haven't looked back.
NetflixWhile this is the only thing in this list that I have rarely let lapse and I'm loving the new slate of originals—Netflix has made it clear that they don't want to be the home to crappy 90's TV anymore. This makes me very sad because I almost exclusively use Netflix to binge-watch old TV.
Hulu PlusI tried Hulu Plus when it first came out, and it has changed a great deal. The catalogue is easily as deep as Netflix, and there are some gems here that you can't get at the home of the red envelope (Reba and Sabrina the Teenage Witch come to mind).
Amazon PrimeI came for the free shipping. I stayed for the West Wing before it was on Netflix. Honestly, the entire thing is terrible hard to navigate on the web. Though the Roku app is nice, I only end up here through the unified search when the content isn't on Netflix (I do still prefer this over Hulu Plus's ads).
My Parent's HBO GOGame of Thrones. That is all. And, I realize that technically this isn't cutting the cord. Though, I'm not paying for it and I'm sure you know someone with a login you can borrow to. And, if anyone from HBO is reading this, I would love to pay you for this service but you won't let me.
Google Play, Amazon VOD, etcDid you know that I used to buy seasons of TV shows on Google Play and Amazon? Well, I have a stock pile of Happy Endings episodes there and go back from time to time. The one problem is that there isn't a decent Amazon VOD app for Android and there isn't a YouTube/Google Play app for Roku.