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post #1 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 01:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Cutting the Cord

In an effort to save costs I am looking into "cutting the cord". Currently we are paying the following:

Xfinity - $155 for TV, phone and Internet (200Mpbs) Under contract for about another year and a half. Don't have to pay penalties as long as I keep one of the three services (phone, TV or Internet)
Netflix - $15.99
Amazon Prime - $12.99

Ideally I would like to reduce total costs for TV and internet to around $100. We really don't watch much TV besides Netflix and Amazon Prime. I am a big sports fan (Chicago Bears and Chicago Cubs). Cubs are creating their own network (Marquee Network) which complicates things more. I really don't know much about cord cutting so any help would be appreciated!

Last edited by pmsmith2032; 02-19-2020 at 01:52 PM.
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post #2 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 02:54 PM
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The main factor is going to be how good of a deal you can get on an internet-only, internet+phone, or internet+minimal TV package from XFINITY. While I was with XFINITY, the cheapest way to get acceptable internet speed (advertised as 45Mbps, worked at 100) was actually an internet+minimal TV package (basically locals + garbage OTA/shopping channels) for $45/mo + taxes/fees, which came out around $57 total. You may have a similar package available in your area, or a similar internet+phone package available... you'll just need to see what's available in your area. You'll also probably want to see what other internet providers may be available in your area... I moved away from XFINITY about a year after AT&T Fiber came to my neighborhood and prices came down (initially they were only offering the 1Gbps tier, but later offered a 300Mbps tier that I opted for).

From there, you just need to figure out where you can get your required sports content from the cheapest... whether that be OTA antenna, over-the-top TV provider (YouTubeTV/Sling/HuluLive/etc), or specific individual network/app access.

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post #3 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 03:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmsmith2032 View Post
In an effort to save costs I am looking into "cutting the cord". Currently we are paying the following:

Xfinity - $155 for TV, phone and Internet (200Mpbs) Under contract for about another year and a half. Don't have to pay penalties as long as I keep one of the three services (phone, TV or Internet)
Netflix - $15.99
Amazon Prime - $12.99

Ideally I would like to reduce total costs for TV and internet to around $100. We really don't watch much TV besides Netflix and Amazon Prime. I am a big sports fan (Chicago Bears and Chicago Cubs). Cubs are creating their own network (Marquee Network) which complicates things more. I really don't know much about cord cutting so any help would be appreciated!
You can reduce your monthly load by alternating back and forth between Prime and Netflix, keeping each for only a month or so and then dropping it till there's enough new stuff to warrant watching. I use the Recast DVR which is tied to Prime, so I keep Prime all the time, but Netflix maybe one month in 3-4 seems quite adequate. Same for premium services, only a month at a time. I get stand alone Comcrap 300Mb internet for $80/mo.
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post #4 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 05:57 PM
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If you dump cable tv, they may jack up the price for just the internet and phone package. You get a better deal the more services you bundle. So your phone/internet bill per month may still be $100 a month. Thus adding Youtube TV for $50 a month may not make a whole lot of sense. Plus, you now have to find a way to watch your Cubs. If you live outside of Illinois, you could get MLB TV and get the Cubs for $94 a season.
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post #5 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 06:09 PM
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So much to say, that you really can't say. Cut the cord, do your research.
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post #6 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by wxman View Post
If you dump cable tv, they may jack up the price for just the internet and phone package. You get a better deal the more services you bundle. So your phone/internet bill per month may still be $100 a month. Thus adding Youtube TV for $50 a month may not make a whole lot of sense. Plus, you now have to find a way to watch your Cubs. If you live outside of Illinois, you could get MLB TV and get the Cubs for $94 a season.

Cutting the cord doesn't mean now what it did way back then. If you have internet service then you're paying someone for the connection so that you can pay someone else for your content. Up until a little over 2 years ago, we never had cable or satellite. It was OTA all the way. But we did pay for internet service (which included our land line phone) and NF which was about $80 per month total. Where we live now we can't do OTA so it's Comcast for internet and local HDTV only (no streaming). We pay $120 per month for 300/12 internet and local HDTV. Streaming is thru the ATV4k. However, add NF, AP, MLB, NBA on top of that and it adds up. AppleTV+ is free this year due to a new laptop purchase and Disney+ thru our daughter . Cell phone is another cost because land lines are no more, at least for us.

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post #7 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by rdgrimes View Post
You can reduce your monthly load by alternating back and forth between Prime and Netflix, keeping each for only a month or so and then dropping it till there's enough new stuff to warrant watching. I use the Recast DVR which is tied to Prime...
Recast isn’t tied to Prime. I don’t have Prime, and my Recast works just fine. You only need a regular, free Amazon account.

To the OP, with Google Voice and Obihai, your phone line would be free.

That leaves you with only the cost of unbundled internet and the streaming services you already have.

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post #8 of 17 Old 02-19-2020, 10:02 PM
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Adding to my frustration with Comcast is that won't allow you to see the prices for all service tiers they offer. If you're already a customer, when going to their site, you're only shown tiers equal in price or higher. I actually had to take photos of the addresses of houses with satellite dishes, and use an alternate browser than my preferred Firefox, and enter those (when the site asks you for your location) to see different offers that were cheaper than what was pushed at me. This is really crappy behavior. And they wonder why they are regarded as one of the most hated companies. And why can't the prices be uniform across the country. I'm drooling over the $155 a month pmsmith is paying (that is after all the fees and boxes are added in?).

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post #9 of 17 Old Yesterday, 05:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all your responses. For those of you who have Xfinity/Comcast do you rent the modem? It's $14 a month for my current plan.
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post #10 of 17 Old Yesterday, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by pmsmith2032 View Post
Thanks for all your responses. For those of you who have Xfinity/Comcast do you rent the modem? It's $14 a month for my current plan.

I rent but looking to buy my own modem. It will take a year to pay for modem with the savings.

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post #11 of 17 Old Yesterday, 07:45 PM
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Used modems are less than $30 on eBay.
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post #12 of 17 Old Yesterday, 10:20 PM
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Used modems are less than $30 on eBay.
He would need one of the internet/voice compatible models...And one that's compatible with Xfinity. Not all of them are.

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post #13 of 17 Old Yesterday, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by pmsmith2032 View Post
Thanks for all your responses. For those of you who have Xfinity/Comcast do you rent the modem? It's $14 a month for my current plan.

Buying the modem is a no-brainer. At Amazon - look for the Arris SB6121 and click into Used deals - a $90 modem for less than $30 in Like New condition. Same with the SB6141. I have been using both for years now with zero problems. Sure, they top out at 300mbps, but you ain't gonna be subscribing to anything that exceeds that anyway.


Don't get sucked into buying a modem router combo. Keep them separate so that if one component breaks you're not out the entire unit.
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post #14 of 17 Old Yesterday, 11:56 PM
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Originally Posted by pmsmith2032 View Post
Thanks for all your responses. For those of you who have Xfinity/Comcast do you rent the modem? It's $14 a month for my current plan.
Just sold two old router/modems for $40 on Ebay two weeks ago. Had been up in the closet for a couple years. The local Spectrum (Time Warner) cable does not even come out to my rural area house. No way was I gonna mess with crappy satellite service. So I was stuck with terribly slow Frontier DSL for years. Was not much above dial-up. Speed was 1Mbps!. After I bought the new 4K tv, I had to do something. After some research, I ended up with AT&T Fixed Wireless. Best thing ever out here. The router has a Sim card slot like a cell phone. I installed a Yagi type antenna outside pointed at the cell tower one cornfield over, with a clear line of sight. Speed now is 50Mbps and is $85 a month, with no data limit. Like going from the Stone Age to "almost" the 21st Century.
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post #15 of 17 Old Today, 06:26 AM
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He would need one of the internet/voice compatible models...And one that's compatible with Xfinity. Not all of them are.

I"d recommend considering changing VOIP phone services. One can buy a modem/router and a separate VOIP phone adapter and save $$. Some services even supply an adapter for free or next to nothing. And you can keep your same phone number. Get rid of that dependency.



The other thing to think about is cutting home phone service entirely and going all mobile... if that's an option. I barely use my "home phone" anymore.
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post #16 of 17 Old Today, 07:03 AM
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Thanks for all your responses. For those of you who have Xfinity/Comcast do you rent the modem? It's $14 a month for my current plan.
If you;re buying a new modem, be sure to get one of the newer DOCSIS 3.1 models. Even with the same speed tier they are faster.
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post #17 of 17 Old Today, 07:19 AM
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I"d recommend considering changing VOIP phone services. One can buy a modem/router and a separate VOIP phone adapter and save $$. Some services even supply an adapter for free or next to nothing. And you can keep your same phone number. Get rid of that dependency.



The other thing to think about is cutting home phone service entirely and going all mobile... if that's an option. I barely use my "home phone" anymore.
Good point about the phone. In my case I asked Frontier to drop the DSL and keep the home phone. I was paying $100 for both. They said I could keep the home phone for $75. Thanks, but no thanks. Now when I get home, the cell is connected to the pc via a usb cable and is run with "Vysor" emulator. A pair of bluetooth headphones is used for calls. Works great.
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