If you’re one of the 20 million customers DirecTV has, you’re probably feeling a high level of frustration right about now. As you know, Viacom pulled (or DirecTV pulled – depending on who you believe) two dozen channels at midnight Tuesday. Some of those channels include TV Land, MTV and a host of other popular networks. And if you’re wondering how you can back out of this brouhaha, we have your answers.
You’re not the only one thinking there has to be a better way. We had an email today from a woman who was wondering what her options were if she ditched DirecTV entirely.
I’m a single mom and for us, DirecTV is our escape. The kids and I don’t take week long vacations nor are we members of the country club. I happily whip my Visa out every month to make sure the bill is paid – it’s our one splurge. When we plan to getaway, our idea is to hang out at the house, order some pizza and the girls invite a few friends over. Then, it’s an all night TV-fest. Now, though, I’m feeling like I’m refereeing between these two humongous corporate giants and I just can’t shake the sense that the consumers are getting left behind. Are there any other options?
Fortunately, and thanks to modern technology, consumers who’ve had a “bellyful” of DirecTV, Dish or their cable companies can easily subscribe to any number of online resources – and many are slashing their costs in dramatic ways.
Most current episodes to favorite TV shows are found on Amazon’s site. You can buy season passes, usually around $20, for those shows your family loves. Plus, you have a massive library of great movies – from every genre and every decade. Most of us already have an Amazon account – but if you don’t, it’s really simple to get signed up.
Any movies you rent or episodes you buy are deducted from the credit card you have on file. Plus, if you have the right cables, you can link your computer to the TV and watch it that way. There was a time if you were streaming the internet, your only option was to watch it online. Those days are long gone.
Hulu exploded on the scene a few years ago. It too offers the latest episodes of the TV shows we all know and love. Most of them are free, though you can sign up for the package, Hulu Plus, that offers a lot more. It’s a small monthly subscription rate and again, your credit card is charged each month or you can manually go in and pay it when you need it. Look for great Alfred Hitchcock episodes, the most recent episodes of most networks shows and a host of other Hulu-exclusive documentaries.
This is a favorite choice for many, especially since the company is finally able to keep more current episodes available to customers. For $8 a month, you can enjoy unlimited streaming videos – and you can also use your cables to run it straight to your TV. Signing up is easy here too. Be sure to put a credit card on file so that you can auto subscribe.
For now, DirecTV customers have been without these channels for close to twenty four hours. It’s become a game of “he said, he said” with these two groups. Viacom blames DirecTV and DirecTV blames Viacom. The fact is – the customers are growing weary of these embarrassing brawls between so called “consumer friendly” companies.
If this were a one time incident, it might not be so bad, but these wars are occurring on a much more regular basis now. Ultimately, whether you choose to stay with a satellite provider or cable company is up to you. If you’re tired of these ridiculous arguments, then it might be worth your time to see how well your family can adapt to the online services.