You’re not the only one who wants to get rid of cable and enjoy free TV. The U.S. cable industry lost 410,000 subscribers in the first quarter 2017.
Everyone wants to save money on cable.
After having to pay $144 per month for internet and cable for the past two-years, I decided that it was time to research how to get cable TV free of charge. Although I wanted to cut down on my monthly bill, I wasn’t ready to give up TV.
It was amazing to discover that there are many online streaming options that let me watch my favorite shows while keeping my money in my pocket.
How to watch cable TV free of charge
Cable companies may try to convince customers that their high-priced pricing is the best, but there are legitimate options for watching live cable TV online at a fraction of the cost.
1. Get an HDTV antenna
TV Antennas are making an impressive comeback. Parks Associates’ new research shows that TV antennas are making a big comeback.
These antennas are not the old TV antennas that you had to place near a window for good reception. These antennas are HDTV, which means they can receive superior broadcast signals as well as a lot of local channels.
An HDTV antenna can pick up signals from as many as 109 channels if it is located near a city. To find out how many channels are available from your area and what type of antenna you will receive, visit Antenna Web.
Antenna types: Omni-directional and directional
There are two types: Omni-directional and directional antennas. The choice of antenna depends on where you live and the other factors that affect your home setup.
Antennas for direction
Directional antennas, as the name implies, are designed to point in one direction. A directional antenna works best when:
- The antenna is visible from the cell tower.
- If the tower is too far away for a multidirectional antenna to reach.
- If all available cell towers are in a particular direction.
Amazon usually sells a decent HD antenna for less than $50.
Omni-directional antennas on the other hand are designed to pick up signals in all directions. Multi-directional antennas can be your best option when it is difficult to tell where the TV signal is coming.
These antennas can intercept satellite signals in a 2-D geometric plane. They are capable of maintaining satellite connectivity even if signals bounce off buildings or other objects. These antennas are slightly less expensive than directional ones but still offer great value when compared to cable.
Outdoor vs. indoor antennas (where to place your antenna)
You must also consider the location of your antenna to ensure excellent reception. You must decide whether to use an indoor or outdoor antenna.
Indoor TV antennas
An indoor TV antenna can be small and placed in any room. It is ideally located within 10 miles of TV broadcast towers. These antennas are also great if an outdoor antenna is not possible.
The cost of high-quality indoor TV antennas is very reasonable. For example, the AmazonBasics Ultra Thin Antenna has a good 50-mile range and is very affordable. It is easy to set up an indoor antenna. You simply need to plug the antenna in the “Ant In” receiver of your TV, and mount it in a nearby window.
Outdoor TV antennas
If you live in rural or wooded areas, an outdoor antenna may be the best option. Outdoor antennas are often mounted on roofs so they are less susceptible to signal obstructions from buildings and roofing materials.
Many people believe that outdoor TV antennas cost too much. Most can be bought at very affordable prices. For as low as $40 , you can purchase one with an range of 80 miles.
2. Register for a free video streaming subscription
The internet has a lot of video streaming services that can be used to get free cable TV. You can also rest assured that they’re DMCA-compliant. Some are free and others don’t require you to register for an account. Others may require that you login or pay a small fee.
CrackleTV is a great place to start if you enjoy watching TV and movies in large chunks. Crackle TV was originally called “Grouper” and acquired by Sony Entertainment in 2006.
Warning: The streaming service displays ads within the content at a set time. It can be annoying but it is necessary to keep the service free. Crackle TV is a great way to get free television. It also provides a wide range of high-quality programming. Crackle TV’s content changes every month, but there are plenty of TV shows and movies available.
Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video offers video streaming services to Prime members. You can still get PrimeVideo for less than $10 per month, even if you are not an Amazon Prime member.
Prime Video gives you access to thousands upon thousands of TV shows and movies for a nominal fee or free. Cable channels such as Showtime can be added to your existing cable service for a fraction of the cost.
Related to Amazon Prime: Get Free
Netflix is one the most well-known streaming services. The billion-dollar streaming service has more than 75 million subscribers. Netflix isn’t free but the high-quality programming and quantity make it worth the investment.
Netflix offers an free trial for 30 days. This gives you more time to try the streaming service. If you are not satisfied with the service, you can cancel at any time before the trial ends.
You can choose one of three plans if you decide to subscribe after your free trial.
- Basic: You can stream unlimited TV shows and movies in standard definition for $8.99 per month.
- Standard:The Standard plan lets you stream unlimited content for $12.99 per month. You can also watch HD video on the plan and you have the option of watching on more than one screen at once.
- Premium: For $15.99 per month you can get unlimited content as well as the option to view in HD or Ultra HD. You can also watch content on up to four screens simultaneously. This is a great option if you need a plan that covers your entire family.
You pay a fraction of the cost of regular cable packages even with the most expensive plan. You can still pay Netflix if you make a small income from home.
3. Get cable TV online for free
You can stream cable TV online for free if you already pay monthly for high-speed Internet service.
TV.com focuses on television programming, as the name suggests. This is a great place to keep up with the latest news and your favorite TV shows.
The website’s strong community of TV fans is another reason to stay. It offers a complete list of TV shows that you can enjoy and allows you to share your favorites with others.
Visit the network website
You can watch network websites like FOX.com and ABC.com the day they air. Although you won’t be able to view their content live, it is still an amazing deal since it’s completely free. While you wait for the next episode, you can watch previous seasons.
Online Television – Use it!
There’s an alternative to paying monthly for television classics. You can access a complete list of vintage TV shows by visiting the Classic Television Online website. This collection includes everything you need to indulge your nostalgia, from memorable late-night interviews to prime-time specials to daytime shows.
Purchase a Roku device
Roku has been the streaming device choice for many years. Roku is revolutionizing the way we watch TV and movies from the comfort of our homes with its smart capabilities and excellent interface.
You can stream past and current episodes of different cable and satellite channels by connecting your Roku device with your TV. Roku continues to be the leader in streaming devices with the introduction of 4K technology and HDR technology. This allows Roku to surpass competitors such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Chromecast.
You can watch YouTube videos
YouTube has grown to be the largest online video platform worldwide. YouTube TV was launched in 2017 by the video hosting site. Although YouTube TV is a new service, its impressive network portfolio has already had a significant impact. YouTube TV has over 60 networks under its belt and is quickly becoming one of the best cable TV alternatives.
Other methods to receive free cable
4. You can share a video streaming account
It is common to share streaming passwords with family and friends. A Reuters poll last year found that a majority of young adults had shared their streaming logins. Is sharing passwords considered “piracy?” There is no clear answer. Even streaming companies may have different opinions.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings stated in 2016 that sharing streaming logins was “par for the program” for the streaming service.
Amazon Prime, for its part, states on its website that Amazon Household allows you “to share Amazon benefits with another adult or teenagers in your household.” This phrase is open to interpretation.
You can trust your judgement if you are unsure of what to do. If you decide to share your password with a friend, and you feel guilty about it , don’t .
5. Buy Tivo Roamio’s DVR Recording Device
The Tivo Roamio Digital Video Recording Device is a great option if you are looking for a device that seamlessly combines OTA (over-the-air), viewing, recording and streaming all in one package. Although it is a high-priced one-time investment, it will eventually pay for itself if your cable subscription is cancelled.
Enjoy your favorite streaming apps, including Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Video, without having to switch inputs.
6. Resolve your cable bill
Although you won’t get free TV if your cable bill isn’t negotiated, it’s worth the effort, especially if Trim is used.
Trimis an app that allows you to review your spending habits and find subscriptions that you should cancel. It can also negotiate your cable bill. Trim is a great option if you don’t like calling your cable company every year to discuss your bill.
Find the best free cable TV method for your household
There are many options for watching your favorite movies and shows if you want to reduce your cable bill. Depending on your location, budget and personal preferences, which one or more you choose will depend on what you like.
Television is a tool that should be used to relax and entertain, not for monthly stress over a high bill.