Living Off the Grid: Ditching Cable for Netflix and Hulu

You may know that when my wife and I got married, we agreed to not have a TV for the first year.

This doesn’t mean we didn’t watch stuff — we got our fix using Hulu and Netflix to watch The Office (we’re on to Parks and Recreation now), or Charlie Rose, Front Line, and TED, none of which require cable (or a TV for that matter).

The momentum of not having a TV carried us for the next year or so, and I honestly forgot about it all together. [But my wife didn’t. The issue recently came up again, as you can see from her post here — but we agreed to stay TV-less based on some of the research that seems to show that the best policy is no TV for a child under two. More on that in another post.]

But the recent discussion about getting a TV raised another point: let’s say we do get that 70-inch beast. Back in the day, I remember paying around $100 p/month for cable. I’m really not looking forward to that.  (Call me a cheap SOB)

Between what you can stream online and services like Netflix and Hulu, why spend the money?

I’m sure I’m not the only one.  Do you use a service like Netflix or Hulu, and a digital antenna to get local channels? How do you watch live sports?  What’s your secret to living off the cable grid? 

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About David Rosendahl
Husband, father, co-founder of MindFireInc, two-time Inc500 software company. I love building things.

3 Responses to Living Off the Grid: Ditching Cable for Netflix and Hulu

  1. Caleb S. says:

    My wife and I were also with out a television for the first year and a half of our marriage. We got a “beast”, but have gone without cable. Instead we have just what you mentioned in your post, Netflix and Hulu. The great thing is that most TVs today come with these “apps” built into them, so one can access them easily directly from the TV. Most recently we purchased an HD antenna to pick up the local channels. We get the major networks, but in some incidences we can’t get some live sports events. For example, I couldn’t watch a majority of my Texas Aggies play football because they are not in our region, however, if I had payed for cable and wanted to shell out some more cash I could have had the College Gameday package and watched the games. Another example that will bum you out, is that the Lakers struck a deal with ESPN and cannot be picked up on the local channels any longer. Some solutions to solve these problem might be to watch sporting events at a sports bar or restaurant. Or convince a friend how cool THEY would be if they got ESPN and had everyone over to watch the game at their home. Now that we have the TV with Hulu, Netfix, and an antenna (and have had a child) I think about ditching it all about once a week. There is just too much junk on TV that conflicts with our values.

    • Hi Caleb S 🙂

      How much was the HD antenna? Do you have any problems with it (other than what you mentioned)?

      I know that you’ve also wrestled with whether (or not) to have a TV In the house with the baby. Have you come to any conclusions?

      -dr-

  2. Pingback: Do not adjust your sets « datanode.net

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