questionswhat can we do to replace directv now that it is…

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Do what I did Hulu and Netflix. (I am not the only one)
http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/media/2011-08-10-cable-satellite_n.htm

Phone is Ooma
TV Chromecast
Cell phone Republic Wireless.
All the services use the internet. So what does my ISP do cap my data usage, raise my rates.

Disclaimer I do not watch sports

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Boo, hiss, I am so sorry to hear about that. I was just considering, well, anyone but AT&T. I have had nothing but trouble from them, garbage equipment, just junk, and I get a pixilated signal much more often with their hard wired box than I ever had with direct tv. I wonder how long it will take the FCC to declare it a monopoly, and break it up again, LOL.

@caffeine_dude: That is the route I am currently going towards, but hubby likes his sports. I am currently trying to convince him that it would be cheaper to eat at sports bars, and we'd get wings too, win-win. :-)
Seriously, can you get any national sports, do you know? And we don't currently have any alternative Internet providers in our area, so I will be stuck in a contract with AT&T, or Comcast, I guess. Sux.

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Roku 3. Hulu+, Netflix, and Amazon Prime and I'm pretty much covered for shows I want to watch. Networks can all be gotten over the air where I live. YMMV.

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@pickypickypicky: I don't think there's any chance of any of the providers being considered a monoply these day. The existence of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Streaming, Roku, and other similar resources gives AT&T a convenient out.

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@pickypickypicky: No, perhaps that is a question someone can ask in the future. I care so little about sports I can honestly say I have not watched a single (non-high-school) game in years at my house.
I do like watching Olympic women's beach volleyball and I went through a Olympic curling phase.
Careful with the whole your show is on Amazon... The Walking Dead season 4 is $42 for HD.
@magic cave: But with the latest net neutrality changes in the law, in theory they could block internet based competition. (block = make the service unusable, not actually block).

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@caffeine_dude: They won't block the service. They will just charge so much for the "fast lane" (translation: we are going to let the "slow lane" degrade so much that even streaming a tiny picture will have so much latency, and so many dropped packets it will be unusable) that services like Netflix, HuluPlus, et al will cost so much that they will be economically impractical.

The other way that they can go is usage caps. That is what is going on in Canada. Their speeds and prices are about what ours are, but they have 50 GB (or lower) usage caps. Given that an HD movie is about 2-4 GB, you can see that you will very quickly hit them. At that point they will either throttle your speed so you can't stream, or charge so much for overage that the service again becomes economically unviable.

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It does appear Internet content is the way to go... that + over the air (OTA) if you are so lucky to have it nearby. Note that OTA picture quality is superior because it is less compressed than the cable/satellite company signals.

Comcast, AT&T, & Wow! are available in our market but it seems to have done little for price competition. (Our stodgy local cable board could have something to do with that.)

RE, net neutrality (preventing Internet providers throttling or charging a premium for bandwidth), speak up with your representatives.

Thankfully another monolith - Google is going into some markets with well-priced gigabit-capable Internet. Clearly their intent is to spark price/bandwidth competition.

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Whatever you do don't get DISH. THEY SUCK!

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@caffeine_dude: http://money.cnn.com/2014/05/20/technology/innovation/chattanooga-internet/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

I find myself thinking if Chattanooga can do this, any municipality can do it. If they have the will to buck Comcast et al.

One thing that continually raises my ire: there's a major divide in useful, affordable internet access, usually along rural vs. non-rural lines. For both kids and adults, not having fast net access can be a significantly limiting factor in education, employment, and overall happiness. Nearly everyone in the US has electricity these days -- the time has come for electric companies to step up as the Chattanooga Electric Power Board did.

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@minkeygirl7: How about some more information as to why they suck? Personally I've had DISH for 2 years now with virtually no problems whatsoever...

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AT&T has gone from one of the best companies on the planet (40 years ago) to the absolute worst. Their customer service sucks, their accounting is worse. I was SO PLEASED when they didn't take over T MOBILE, a quality company that would have been ruined by AT&T.

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TVtibi.com (launches later this summer), plus netflx and amazon prime instant. Pretty much covers the bulk of it.

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@flyingwriter: say what you will about AT&T's prices or their network quality in your area, but I respectfully disagree with your generalization of their customer service over the past 2-3 years. We have had 100% postive interactions with them as have our family and friends. If you have used their customer service within that period it is clear they are focusing heavily on it.

Examples: the installing tech gave us his direct number business card. He waited at our home while we activated our acct. When there was difficulty, he went out to his truck and did it for us. He asked us to call and let him know how it goes. Similar experiences with wireless support. We have never had an 'accounting' issue with them on the land or wireless sides.

We have no affiliation with any tech company.

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@magic cave: Chattanooga, Tenn has a population of 171.000 I live in a rural area with only 10.000. Our cable provider pays a 'franchise fee' to the city. The city slowed down the 'line of site' provider (at the time would have been the first highspeed provider in town) until the cable company had high speed ready.
My source was the 'line of site' provider. They told me they were waiting on the city to place the broadcaster on the water tower. They could not understand the delay. 3 months later cable had highspeed and 4 months later so did the 'line of site' people.
So I doubt our town would spend money to disrupt 'franchise fees'.
Long ago we had a broadcaster that would pull in the nearest over the air broadcast (80 miles away) and rebroadcast for local ota, this is long long gone.

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@flyingwriter: really? I've never had any issues with AT&T and I've been with them now for 10 years. Every time I call with an issue they are prompt and fix it and even give out bill credits. They will take off things from your bill if you bought something by accident.

I was asking about cancelling one of my lines and they gave me 3 months credit to keep the line active. I never understood the hate for AT&T. Comcast.... don't get me started.

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@zapp brannigan: agreed. We've been with AT&T for a long time (largely due to Comcast hate), recently UVerse Internet only - the thing we dislike - having our rates steadily jacked up. So every 12-14 months we call them and threaten to leave. One of these times we'll actually leave since WOW! has been getting a bit more price-aggressive.

Tip: if pricing is your issue with any provider, don't waste time with the standard customer service folks. Go straight to the disconnect department and be ready to leave them. They are typically the most highly trained and have the most leeway on deals.

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@autotechinstl: some of my issues with Dish Network were poor equipment (usually failing after 13 months) coupled with difficulties in getting replacements without being charged high prices in addition to paying shipping and having to re-up for 2 more years, constantly losing channels due to "fighting to keep costs down" to not never getting those channels back to also being given a rate increase, losing all my regional sports channels due to these "disputes"

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Bought a Roku and a Netflix subscription about 8 months ago. Haven't missed cable one bit.

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@autotechinstl: Let me say I had Tivo first so that was my reference. First I was misinformed when I called to get info. I was told I could watch in one room and record in another, but there is really now way to do it. On dual it defaults to TV 2 and on single the same show is on both TV's so huh?

I found recording and looking at what was set up unwieldy and I was running back and forth between TV's trying to go get the show I wanted to record on the TV I wanted.

The other thing is they have no grace period if you don't like it. I personally that is because they would have too many returns (complaints all over the place about them).

Because of some other issues, I filed a complaint with the BBB and they canceled my contract but I would have paid the fee just to get rid of them that's how much I hated it.

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@caffeine_dude: It really frustrates me knowing that what has become (for all intents and purposes) a modern necessity could be fairly easily and without exorbitant cost provided to all of a community's residents.

I live in a city of 700k. The electric company is municipally owned, and the provision of broadband just wouldn't be that hard. Except for a city council that gave Comcast a monopoly and is resolutely opposed to making any changes that might cost them some of those juicy campaign contributions.

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@magic cave:The local government building this stuff might not be a good idea. Successful long term operation, updating, support and management of the infrastructure relies just a bit too much on a reliably constant flow of smart local politicians to oversee it. Even if the build-out and operation is outsourced.

On the other hand, perhaps this is your opportunity to jump into local politics! We get the govt we deserve.

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@bluemaple: While I appreciate your support [grin], I'm a bleeding heart do-gooder liberal Democrat living in a city with an 80% Southern Baptist Republican governing body and an employment history that would bring the crazies out with pitchforks and torches I ran for any kind of public office.

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@magic cave:
Let me edit that for you.
Except for a city council that g̶a̶v̶e̶ sold Comcast a monopoly

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Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. I have not had proper cable/satellite service in 8-10 years. I'm saving a boatload of money and there's so much to watch I'm perpetually behind on my tv series and movie watch list. No commercials.

Screw traditional TV service.

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@ddog800: How do you get hulu without commercials? Because if you know a way you need to tell me right now! Because they drive me crazy.

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@pickypickypicky: If you are having issues with your TV service pixelating and freezing it could be anything from a bad splitter to a bad coax fitting, low noise margins among a number of other variables. If possible, try running a cat5 ethernet cable from the RG/modem (yellow port) to the back of the set top box and disconnect the coax from said set top box and reboot or power cycle. Let me know what happens from there. BTW have you called in to the dreaded 1-800 number for a repair ticket?

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You will not see any difference with DIRECTV when the purchase is made by ATT. The company will be run as it is today. The only difference may be additional channels and discounts with ATT wireless. The reason your bills, cable & satellite, keep rising is due to retransmission charges, which the Obama administration encourages thru the FCC. These are fake charges your local station charges cable and satellite providers to allow you to watch Free Over-The-Air local channels. Not only do these local stations thrive on advertising, now they get billions from you so you can watch them by satellite or cable. You get the same for free with an antenna and these charges are the cost of 50+% of your bill. DIRECTV, ATT, and the rest of the providers are constantly fighting the fake charges.

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You don't say whether you have inside industry info (I have no affiliation with any of these companies), but in theory, the over-the-air (OTA) stations have every right to demand a fee from the cable/satellite companies.

Yes, it is true the OTA companies are compensated by their original revenue source - their advertisers... however, the cable companies are charging their customers a fee that is higher due to the inclusion of local OTA. It is perfectly reasonable that OTA providers would expect a cut of that cable revenue.

It can be debated what a fair OTA fee would be, but the principle of an OTA fee is sound - the OTA folks 'own' their 'product' and paid for it either directly or through licensing.

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My background is broadcasting, I own DIRECTV stock, and worked 10+ years for DIRECTV distributors. Local stations DO NOT have the right to charge, as their licenses are given to them by the FCC for FREE. Cable & Satellite providers charge for OTA locals due to the retransmission fees. Just remember, if the providers dropped the locals and were able to broadcast network fees, who would watch your local station? In addition, by having the local affiliate carried by the providers, their audience has been increased by tens of thousands+. This allows them to sell advertising at higher rates. The only person getting screwed is the viewer, who is constantly paying more because retransmission fees are the holy grail of the broadcast industry. CBS has threatened to go strictly cable if the fees are dropped. Plus the fees produce taxes for...you know who!

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@07avalon: I disagree in principle. The FCC licenses might have been designed for a time when this was not an issue. So you are claiming the Cable companies do not 'benefit' from carrying the OTA content? If they benefit, they should pay, just like they do for their other content.

In fact, carriers at one time explicitly charged for local channels in a separate package/fee. Clearly they see a benefit as do their customers.

Not paying for that content would be theft. If the carriers don't want to pay for it, they can simply drop the local OTA content. But their customers want it.

BTW, those "tens of thousands+" of extra audience mean the OTA advertisers should to expect to pay more to the OTA broadcasters. The OTA advertisers' relationship is with the OTA companies and those OTA companies should benefit from their "product". Whey you steal service/product, everyone eventually loses.