Alternative To Comcast For Cable?

I've been a customer of Comcast Cable for 15 years but they just raised my bill $20 more per month. I threatened cancellation and all they want to do is offer me triple play which I really don't want. I don't want to go to a cable modem.

I am in a hole in Califon where I can only get Centurylink for phone (versue Verizon Fios)

So what to do? I have phone and DSL with Centurylink. What has been other peoples experience with DirectTV and Dish?

Lucy Lucy Message Lucy
Feb '13


Dish has no Yankees or Mets..but its cheaper than directv...The dish hopper lets u watch your DVR on your phone and computer

halo
Feb '13

I called Comcast a few months ago, to cancel and they offered me all these discounts, which made it a great deal. So I stayed with them. Then I called last month and they offered me another $5 discount per month, just for being a great customer for so long.
Very easy to deal with. Call them back and speak with someone else. Good luck!

botheredbyu botheredbyu Message botheredbyu
Feb '13

A few months ago, I got tired of paying Comcast and having to go through the bill in detail every month to make sure there were no unnecessary charges. We downgraded our Comcast services to economy internet (have not noticed any difference in speed) and to limited basic cable. The only reason that we even kept the basic cable is because the BF is into sports and this way we get most of the sports channels (but not ESPN). We then subscribed to Hulu and Netflix so we could get all of the TV shows we like and a whole awry of movies (streamed through the Wii).

We used to pay $185 per month for internet and cable through Comcast. We now pay $75 per month for both and have not missed having full cable at all. At a savings of over $1200 per year, it works great for us. We are able to get almost all of the shows we used to watch on TV on Hulu or Netflix. There are a few shows that we cannot stream through the Wii but can watch on the computer (we hook the computer up to the TV screen and watch it that way so its pretty much the same as watching TV). You still have to pay for the boxes from Comcast, so if you have more than 2 TVs, it would be a bit more each month.

This is probably not exactly what you are looking for because it sounds like you would like full cable, but I thought it may be helpful for some others out there looking to lower some bills. Next on my list is working on lowering the cell phone bills:).

Happy Homemaker Happy Homemaker Message Happy Homemaker
Feb '13

I've had Directv for almost 2 years now. 5 TV's with one of them a DVR. Two of the boxes are also HD. I pay ~$100. We had the picture go out on us about dozen times max and only for a short period of time. The ~$400 in savings easily makes up for it. We get quite a few channels but don't have any premium channels.

I'll never go back to cable. I have considered cable modem service but that's only because I may drop my landline phone and also go to streaming video services.

emaxxman emaxxman Message emaxxman
Feb '13

been with directv since 2008 and all is good same as emaxxman in price and number of tvs also whole home dvr. We watched tv all through sandy , did not lose the signal at all. that was impressive.

jdem jdem Message jdem
Feb '13

DSL and century link. Yikes. Go triple play. Its a good service.

DSL is so slow and your probably paying by the minute foe century link.

sack
Feb '13

Comcast used to offer me the "promo," but after 6 years of it, they just stopped even though I said I would quit. So my bills went up $20 and then they just raised it another $20.

So I just downgraded since all I watch on the extra channels are old movies. Now I stream and get Netflix DVDs to fufill that and am saving over $30 a month.

Thinking of going to the most basic package soon.

mistergoogle mistergoogle Message mistergoogle
Feb '13

Well I did call back, after 5 pm. No more promotional packages for just a single service since I was just looking for cable.

Best I could do was downgrade my service to save $20. They did throw in HBO free for 6 months. So I won't get NW Comcast channels of 101-199 like National Geographic, Military channel, bio etc. I can live with that.

The question is - what will I be giving up the next time I call which I'm sure will be within 6 months?

I think we are all going to be paying for the purchase of NBC.

Lucy Lucy Message Lucy
Feb '13

Bottom line - Comcast needs competition.

Mel Mel Message Mel
Feb '13

Agree with Mel. They need competition. They raised mine by $15 a month. When I called to cancel service they lowered it to less than what I had been paying. Then for the past 4 months they have increased the charge by $2 a month. I called again, and the "guy" told me to just cancel. AND I would, but Verizon said they don't like my address and can't reinstate my phone. After having NJ Bell, and Verizon since '69, now they can't give me phone service. So, I'm pretty much stuck with Comcast's Triple Play. (I have NEVER been late with a bill)

Ms Fishy Ms Fishy Message Ms Fishy
Feb '13

Lucy, I'm near Califon (mailing address) and use DirecTV (13 years) and now Comcast for phone/internet. I'm really happy with the service but really unhappy with the price.

I've only had Comcast for about 1 year. Prior to that, I had Century Link (Embarq?).
Comcast cable internet is so much better than CenturyLink. I was told that I'm at the very end of the Century Link line though, so that's why. But it was very frustrating to download anything at all. Lately, Century Link is mailing out very tempting offers. Your house might have better service than mine.

Like the others, my Comcast bill keeps going up. Used to be that I could call them and they'd lower it, but not any more. I thought about removing my landline. When I called to do that, they told me that the single service internet cost the same as the bundled internet/landline!

Like Jdem said, we had a good DirecTV signal all through Sandy (that is, if we had power or generator)

My monthly bills:
DirecTV - $124/month (with HBO/Cinemax and NO HD recievers) That's for 6 tv's and I'm dropping HBO/Cinemax soon for $25 savings - I hope.
Comcast - $78/month (internet & phone). One year ago my bill was $61 for SAME service.

LV Ann LV Ann Message LV Ann
Feb '13

I pay $65 with Centurylink for 10 mb internet and landline. I will pay around $80 for Comcast cable for 2 rooms with HD, but I downgraded to basic (no more expanded)

Now how do we get the cell phone bill down?

Lucy Lucy Message Lucy
Feb '13

I've had DirecTV for a decade now and love it. We just got the genie which is real good. You have one HD receiver (server really) and the rest are slaves. Like Dish, you can also watch on demand stuff on phone/tablet/computer. I pay about $130/month with all the premium channels and two tv's. Wife's company pays for FiOS phone/internet, so I don't mind splurging a bit on tv. No real issues. Weather will affect it from time if there's really heavy rain or snow. We didn't lose signal much at all even during Sandy to give you an example. Plus, we had tv even when the power went out for 5 days because it's a satellite and we had a generator going.

Genie is a major upgrade from the old HD receivers. It's much faster and can record 5 things at once. It was so frustrating changing channels on the old one. Would take over 5 sec at times, which is an eternity.

Good luck.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Feb '13

MeisterNJ, how are the slaves tethered to the master? Is it wireless or did they have to hardwire them all together? Is it a DIY or do you need a tech to come out and do the install? How much did it run you, if so?

i ask because I'm about to tear out most of the carpet upstairs and install hardwood floors, so if I'm gonna upgrade and it involves running cable and drilling holes, now is probably the time to do it...

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Feb '13

MeisterNJ - Is Genie a DVR? We have an older Tivo and really l ike it. I installed a new hard drive in it about a year ago so we can storee more on it, but we still can only record 2 channels at the same time (it's not HD). The other tv's in our house just have regular boxes at $6/box per month. But I would consider switching my DVR in the future if I could bundle and save money somehow!

Lucy - that's a tough one. The only think I do to keep our cell phone bill down is to go with the least amount of shared minutes (Verizon 700 minute plan). We can do this because we text a lot instead of talk.

LV Ann LV Ann Message LV Ann
Feb '13

Yes, Genie is a DVR. Actually, better. It's a server really. You only need small modem-size boxes for other tv's in the house, though they still bang you a small charge for each one. You can watch in one room and continue in another.

It does wind up being a little bit cheaper overall per month. We had it installed a couple months ago. Used to be $300, but now it's free for existing subscribers. There's an installation charge, but that's all.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Feb '13

Lv Ann call direct tv and ask for help with your bill. My wife called and they knocked like 15 dollars a month from our bill.

jdem jdem Message jdem
Feb '13

So, all of the "tuners" are in the master server and the slaves take one of the feeds from it?

Since it can record 5 things at once, I'm assuming it has 5 separate tuners. Does that mean you can't watch 6 different things at the same time in different rooms of the house (not that I can think of a situation where I would actually NEED to, LOL).

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Feb '13

Yes, jdem. The minute you ask DirecTV to lower your bill they do so in the blink of an eye.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Feb '13

"Does that mean you can't watch 6 different things at the same time in different rooms of the house (not that I can think of a situation where I would actually NEED to, LOL)."

Football Sunday!

emaxxman emaxxman Message emaxxman
Feb '13

Hmm. Don't know. I would think you could watch as many channels as you have boxes. All I know is with Genie you can record 5 at once and I think you would have to watch one of the five.

The only change I've seen with the Genie is with the room 'slaves' it doesn't record whatever channel was left on as with a full blown receiver previously. In other words, if I turn the tv with the slave on and see it is in the middle of a show I like, I can't go back from that point like I used to be able to. Not the case with the main tv/genie box itself, just the other rooms. It's the only disadvantage I've seen so far. Recording 5 at once trumps it though.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Feb '13

I'm with you Lucy - the cell phone bill is outrageous. Such a rip off.

botheredbyu botheredbyu Message botheredbyu
Feb '13

"Hmm. Don't know. I would think you could watch as many channels as you have boxes."

Only if the boxes have their own individual tuners. From how you describe them, I'm thinking that they are drawing off of a tuner within the Genie and if the Genie can only record 5 things at once, I wouldn't think that you would be able to watch 6 discrete programs at once. But like I said, it's not going to be an issue for anyone but possibly the Duggars, lol.

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Feb '13

You're probably right ianimal. I don't know much about how it works.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Feb '13

meister, you must have got a nice rep from direct tv. I just called to ask about the genie, they said normally 299 would knock 100 off then 49 to install so 250 total but no change to monthly bill.

jdem jdem Message jdem
Feb '13

And to sit back and think!
How easy and simple it was. You bouht a TV and there were the Rabbit Ears build right on top. You adjusted them a little, and were happy with 13 / 14 channels
.............All........ "F R E E" ..........

I remember the big thing was when the 15 cent copy of the TV Guide came in the mail
WOW!.... and some of the listed shows were outlined ( C O L O R ).

embryodad embryodad Message embryodad
Feb '13

Lol, embryodad. I think about that too! And probably the phone bill wasn't very expensive either. Though I remember just letting the phone ring once, so my mom knew I'd arrived someplace safely. ;)

LV Ann LV Ann Message LV Ann
Mar '13

and you had to carry an 'emergency' dime in your shoe just in case you ever had to make a call from a pay phone.

yeah, i could go back to free tv in a microsoft minute.

our 22 dollars / month cable bill is now about 39 dollars/ month and we are thinking of pulling the plug on the whole thing , just ridiculous price increase from comcast in one years timeframe.

Comcast is bleeding customers, the bad economy is forcing folks to cut back and extra cable tv services is one area that gets cut first , (before food and rent and car ins and gas) comcast is trying to prop up their margins by nickel and dimeing those of us on the cheaper plans. no more rate reductions 'just because' like they used to do. they are holding a much firmer line. they need the dough.

get a good book and an oil lamp, pull the plug on all of it. I can even put the tea kettle on the fireplace and get something hot going. not too shabby, i must say.

BrotherDog BrotherDog Message BrotherDog
Mar '13

I guess I hit it at the right time, jdem. All I paid was the service charge.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Mar '13

Anyone try the new "digital antenna?" In-house antenna to bring HD digital channels in for $19.95. But wait, there's more. Order today and get a second one free ---- just pay shipping, handling (and we love to handle a lot.....). Not available in stores......

Anyone try this (and where?)

http://www.jr.com/category/video-tv/antenna-units/digital/

mistergoogle mistergoogle Message mistergoogle
Mar '13

BD - just a warning. If you use comcast for internet as well, they will charge you more for the internet once you cancel your cable plan.


thanks for the heads up MB,

we have Verison DSL, 768K for 19.95 / month (all the bandwidth anyone could ever need) , , :)

BrotherDog BrotherDog Message BrotherDog
Mar '13

Oh man, that's awesome. I don't even want to admit how much we pay for Comcast internet - it's ridiculous!


I just got direct tv... if anyone wants to join Direct tv please email me. You and I can save $10 a month for the first 10 months and they have awesome deals right now!!!

HeatherS HeatherS Message HeatherS
Mar '13

MB is right. If you DONT bundle, it will cost you more.

botheredbyu botheredbyu Message botheredbyu
Mar '13

PS. I just got the genie its free to instail just a extra $10 a month! and with direct tv if you have a iphone, ipad or kindle fire they have a app where you can watch live tv from anywhere! I am so excited to hook it up and try it and its included in my package :)

HeatherS HeatherS Message HeatherS
Mar '13

Just signed up for the Genie. I currently have all of the carpeting upstairs ripped out in preparation for installing hardwood floors, so i figured now was the best time to get it installed.

According to them, I can keep my existing 3 HD boxes and use them as part of the "whole house system", so i only need two additonal "clients" and the Genie box. The added benefit is that I have two additional tuners in my HD-DVR box that I can still use as well.

I figured I might as well add services to the guest bedroom, office and kitchen, just because I can. The TVs can wait until I actually need them. I thought about the bathrooms too but that would be excessive, lol.

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Mar '13

Wow ian, guest bedroom? Sounds like you are a generous host. Guess it's only $50 a year. I'd just as soon give the inlaws a book. Man, your bill is going to be like $200.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Mar '13

Well, when you consider that the "guest bedroom" doubles as "ianimal's doghouse", it's not all that altruistic, lol. Why spend the night on the couch when you have a spare bedroom? (-;

It's gonna run me $168 for the install and extra receivers/clients. The monthly bill will be going up $21, I think she said? My bill is currently around $120, so it should go up to about $140. During Sunday Ticket season, it'll be up around $200, though.

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Mar '13

I love having TV in my guest bedroom. I keep my iron and ironing board stored in that closet and it is a lifesaver for someone who hates to iron!

Lady Jayne Lady Jayne Message Lady Jayne
Mar '13

Well, since you put it that way, I can see why ianimal.

Two tv's is enough for the Meister household. Living room and man cave. Bedroom is for sleeping (and yes, 'exercise', ianimal, I'll cut you off right there). Wife has the tv ready to go in her home office, but hasn't taken advantage yet, so I might be returning that client.

ianimal, doesn't it cost more for the hd dvr's than it would for a couple more clients? What do you need them for? Recording 5 shows at a time isn't enough?

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Mar '13

The additional three clients would have cost $99 apiece upfront. The receivers are already paid for (only one is a DVR; the others are just HD) and function the same within the system as the clients.

They also agreed to waive the monthly HD fees for the extra boxes because of the "whole home system"; essentially, to them, they are the same as clients.

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Mar '13

I am Sick to death of the bill going up. Obama cut Medicare, cuts to medicare and no raise for the next 3 years probably, My kids health insurance just when up again. Ect.ect.ect. I have amplified rabbit ears that get 35 Chanels in HD Free. Soon as I cancel cable I will but a roof antenna up for $70.00 and get even more. I would have a Boston Tea party but they would lock me up for a fish kill or something. MY new plan, subtract my bills one at a time and when you get to zero, tell them, Sorry your below the line. Maybe Comcast should charge prisoners in jail 2x what they charge us instead of free, might serve as a deterrent. Even hospitals want like $10.00 a day. It will reach a breaking point sooner than later!

Chuck K Chuck K Message Chuck K
Apr '13

Does the genie need to have a network cable plugged in directly for it to work? Or does it use the wireless connection?

Jpb3302 Jpb3302 Message Jpb3302
Apr '13

Now how do we get the cell phone bill down?
My wife recently switched from ATT to Smarttalk at Walmart. You have to buy your own phone but then it's $45.00 mo for unlimited talk text and internet. Very happy so far. been several months.

Longhorn Longhorn Message Longhorn
Apr '13

Chuck: Is it a good picture with the "ears?" I was thinking of doing that and cutting the cable altogether.

For me, the roof antenna ends up being costly not only in the initial costs but seems to break, (rotor, antenna, etc.) once every two years or so due to weather.

Also, has anyone tried the "rabbit" for internet TV. Was wondering how smooth the buffering is since some do it well others pretty bad.

mistergoogle mistergoogle Message mistergoogle
Apr '13

jpb, it uses wireless. I just switched to it a couple months ago. Like it, for the most part. The only drawback is for the 'slaves'. They (or the main box, actually, doesn't record the channel that you're currently on while you're watching a recording. Otherwise, it's nice.

The installer hooked up a DTv wireless connection/router box because they couldn't use my wireless router directly. Of course, that's another monthly rental fee. Have to figure out how to get it working directly so I can do away with that.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Apr '13

When mine was installed, they were able to connect it directly (CAT-5 network cable) to my wireless router... maybe because I had a client installed in the same room as well?

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Apr '13

ian, the client is connected to the router, or the genie? Both? Have a client in that room. If I can connect it to that, I'd be set. I thought the clients themselves are just little wireless receivers.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Apr '13

The genie is in my living room; my router is in my "office" upstairs. The connection up there looks like two clients connected in series with one directly connected to the router. It works, so I haven't really looked closer at it than that, lol.

My setup may be different than yours in that all of the rooms were already fitted for cable so they don't need to be wireless? I think the connection to the router may purely be for an internet connection rather than for communication between the Genie and the clients.

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Apr '13

ok, is your genie connected to the internet wirelessly? I just looked at my bill. I now have a headache. There is a $10 charge for whole home HD and another $10 for DVR service? Huh? $5.99 protection plan and $12 for two clients. I need to place a call. Have to get this down.

MeisterNJ MeisterNJ Message MeisterNJ
Apr '13

MNJ, this is what is connecting my co-ax to my wireless router:

http://www.wiredathome.com/directv-deca-2-connected-home-adapter-dca2sr0-01/

It is also used on each of my three HD boxes to connect them to the "whole home system"... I suspect because they only had single wire connections.

Neither the Genie nor the two C-31 clients have them. So, I don't know if it can be used in your setup or not.

ianimal ianimal Message ianimal
Apr '13

Ok..I know this has been discussed on several threads but thought I would bump this up a bit. We are currently paying almost $250.00 for a bundle from Comcast, cable, internet and phone. Looking to cut the bill and possibly go to Dish or Direct TV. We have 4 TV's, one with DVR and I'm sure paying for channels I don't need. Has anyone removed packages from Comcast, got rid of the landline and actually saved money. Our main problem is the needed sports channels, otherwise we can work with Netflix, Hulu, etc. Any more recent reviews of the Big 3...Comcast, Dish, Direct TV. We live in town in case location makes a difference.

Bessie Bessie Message Bessie
Aug '13

Bessie - have you called Comcast? We recently called them to upgrade our boxes to the infinity platform (which doesn't cost extra) and the rep on the phone said we were paying way to much. She was able to find a some way to cut about $40 a month off our bill without losing anything.

Mommyof3 Mommyof3 Message Mommyof3
Aug '13

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