Cut your monthly entertainment bill by getting your fill of movies and television shows from streaming media players or an HD antenna. Here are five excellent alternatives to your pricey cable or satellite television subscription.
An HDTV antenna gives you access to the free broadcast channels in your area, so you can watch them on your digital TV. Choose from a wide selection of HD antennae, from indoor types to bulky roof-mounted ones. Prices vary according to antenna type and model. Refer to TVFool.com for the channels that are available in your location. It also gives you the antenna direction for which to capture the available broadcast channels that you want to watch.
You don’t have to scrimp on the number of broadcast channels when you finally cut ties with your cable or satellite television carrier. The popular Roku streaming video device gives you access to over 750 broadcast channels. Roku’s streaming stick is priced at $49.99. The streaming media player’s most recent incarnation, Roku 3, is equipped with expandable memory and allows for Ethernet connection. Roku 3 costs $99.99.
Google’s $35 streaming media device can be plugged into the HDMI port of your computer monitor or TV. Chromecast streams a full 1080p display and works with many devices such as PCs and Macs, as well as mobile devices powered by Android and iOS. When you connect the Chrome OS version of Chromecast to your home Wi-Fi network or your TV, you can watch media content through your mobile device on any available HDMI TV.
ASUS Cube with Google TV
Priced at $111.99, the ASUS Cube is a good investment for your cable-free entertainment needs. If you already own or favor Google TV, then the sleek, futuristic-looking ASUS Cube makes for a sensible complement to your multimedia viewing routine. Giving you access to media content on multiple devices, ASUS Cube comes with a custom user interface with a handy voice-enabled search functionality, as well as 50GB of file storage on the Web plus a two-sided universal remote with motion sensors and a microphone.
If you are an Apple fanatic or an avid user of iTunes, you might want to look at Apple TV as a viable alternative for streaming media content. For a price tag of $99, Apple TV streams multimedia content from popular outlets such as HBO Go, Hulu, and Netflix. And with AirPlay Mirroring on your Apple TV, you can simultaneously stream Web-based video on your iOS device.