Why do we constantly do business with companies we despise? Insurance companies, cell phone companies, and TV service providers consistently lead the way in poor consumer experience surveys. It’s a dubious distinction, but one they can’t seem to shake. In August, 2017 Comcast lead the poor customer experience race, but AT&T, DirectTV(owned by AT&T), Dish Network, and Cox Communications all secured spots in the Top (bottom??) 10, too.

Like death and taxes however, insurance and TV services are with us to stay. It doesn’t mean however, that you must use one of the aforementioned to supply your viewing pleasure.

You Say You Want a Revolution…

There’s a revolution brewing. Between changing viewing habits and a monthly bill that would avert more than one mid-life crisis with a new sports car, consumers are flocking away from cable TV. That doesn’t mean they now eschew TV. It just means they source it differently.

When asked why they don’t leave too, many remaining cable / satellite subscribers peg one reason; live sports. We’re a nation that loves sports, and missing out on our favorite teams, or even ones we’ve barely heard of, is something most are loathe to do.

Although most viewers prefer watching their favorite shows on their DVR or on-demand, sports don’t fit there. There’s something about enjoying it as it happens that creates a different experience level; that and spoilers on Twitter mean you can’t escape knowing who won.

The live sports experience is an integral part of our lives, and people aren’t ready to give it up. Fortunately, they don’t have to. There are an increasing number of alternatives to traditional providers to get live sports. As even most cable companies turn to streaming to deliver their programming (didn’t know you were already watching streaming TV, did you?), so can us “average” viewers.

In the last year or two a veritable plethora of live streaming TV options has appeared. There are several leaders:

  • Hulu Live
  • YouTubeTV
  • DirecTV Now
  • Sling TV
  • Amazon

Their differences change constantly, as they adjust packages and add channels. Can you watch live sports this way? Yes, yes you can, and pretty darn well, too! Is replacing cable or satellite with these streaming a good solution for everyone? No, they’re definitely not.

How do you choose which is best for you?

Plenty of homework is the short answer here. Ah, and you thought you left school behind long ago…. As when choosing between satellite TV providers, some due diligence is necessary to uncover exactly which delivers the perfect programming / budget mix to suit your viewing lifestyle.

You can use smart TVs, BluRay players, and streaming boxes, like Roku, AppleTV and Amazon Fire TV to view the different services, Again, this is a fluid situation, so we can help you work through the process. The streaming boxes have apps that let you control them when your remote is hopelessly mired in the cushions or of dead battery. The apps also let you use a keyboard to enter search characters, instead of the infernal cursor.

Common Threads

Yes, that was an Eagles tribute album, with country artists performing Eagles hits, and a darn good one, too. Check it out, if you haven’t already. So, what’s the thread binding these streaming TV services together? Fast Internet. If you’re a “have not” in the broadband Internet department, it’s vital to enjoy one program, let alone having Suzy watching something in the family room, while Billy streams MLB in the rec room, you’ve got 3 business stations in the den, and Chris binges the last season of The Americans in the bedroom.

More often than not, we find single users on multiple screens these days. For example, if Billy’s streaming MLB Network on the family room TV, chances are he’s also watching ESPN on his tablet, while YouTubing on his phone. That’s a massive bandwidth suck, but one your Internet service and home network must support to avoid wails of discontent. Wouldn’t want that, after all…..

The Secret to Your Viewing Pleasure

That’s one reason why you’re not completely “off-grid”. You may be cutting one cord, but you’re now more reliant on another. There are several parts to a great user experience here:

  • Internet Service – The faster, the better. That means you can pull more information down from the web at one time. That better supports bandwidth intensive HD video and music streaming, large image downloads, and general web surfing.
  • Home Network – Once you get all this great content to your humble abode, it must get to your users around the house. That’s your home network’s job, distributing data inside the home.

Your home network typically has 2 parts:

  • WiFi
  • Wired

We try to save WiFI for mobile devices, since they have no other alternative, while putting fixed devices like TVs, streaming audio devices, appliances, and desktop computers on your hard-wired network. That separation is a big secret to keeping you happy with your viewing experience.

I’m Falling….

Speaking of WiFi, there have been plenty of developments in the last couple of years to ensure you have a smooth WiFi experience throughout your home, without falling off the network or having to constantly switch to a stronger WiFi access point. It works outside your home too, so your mobile devices are ready to go when you’re in the yard or on the patio.

Is it complicated? Kinda, but that’s why we’re here! We’re happy to check everything out and make sure it’s all ready for whatever life, and 4K streaming, throws at you! Contact Us Now and let’s chat about it.

Weird Rides

America has an automobile fascination. Always will, whether they’re powered by gasoline, or as is increasingly likely, electricity. No matter, we used to think electric automobiles would be slow moving people pods. After a few 2.5 second runs to 60 in a ludicrous optioned Tesla, we may be forced to rethink that somewhat….

In any case, the automotive landscape is primed for a change. Self driving is really around the corner now, after years of speculation. One wonders how that will affect the American automotive landscape. Will we even own cars in 20 years, or just have one of a fleet of self-driving cars pick us up when needed? It is definitely a thought provoker.

Before we see any radical changes to our personal conveyances, here are a couple of the strangest vehicles ever to grace the highway, beginning with a 100 foot long stretch limo. You could take the whole senior class to prom in that one!

Now, more than a few of our clients drive Italian sports cars, however we’ve never seen a wooden one that doubles as fine water transport!