2.06.2012

follow-up: dumping zip and dumping rogers!

Thank you to everyone who participated in the recent "help me get rid of zip" discussion, both on wmtc and by email. And thanks to CNET, for this video! I started out asking about movies, but ended up with so much more. Goodbye, Rogers! Whoo-hoo!

So many friends and readers have told me they've cancelled cable TV service, but we weren't able to do that: we needed cable for baseball. And we also subscribed to MLBTV online. I hated the redundancy, but there was no other way to have baseball both at home and for Allan at work (where he watches three games each week). But thanks to you all, we've done it.

So here's what we have:

1. I've already cancelled Rogers cable and internet! I had already dumped Rogers for cell phone service, getting more for my money with Wind. So now I am Rogers-free.

2. Later this month, (at the time suggested by friendly, helpful customer service rep) I will order TekSavvy cable-modem internet service.

3. We will purchase a Roku, through which (we are told) we can stream MLBTV onto our TV, and which will eventually support Netflix Canada and other streaming services. If that doesn't work for some reason, we'll get a PlayStation3 for the same purpose.

4. We continue to subscribe to MLBTV, as we always have.

5. One-time expenses for Roku purchase, any necessary adaptors, and TekSavvy modem.

6. I'll subscribe to Netflix Canada when it's available on Roku, because for the low price, why not have the option.

7. I'm also subscribing to Cinemail, a low-budget version of Zip, with friendly service and a wide range of plans, so that I can continue to subscribe in the spring and summer at a lower level, then bump up to the higher level in the winter.

8. When I cancel Zip in April as always, I will not re-subscribe in the fall.

We gain:

1. No more paying for cable TV! Wow! An entire bill disappears!

2. No more paying extra for baseball on cable TV!

3. No more giving money to over-priced media giant!

4. We will pay slightly less for internet, and will lose the 95GB cap. The cap will now be 300GB (and if you go over, which is tough to do, it's only $0.50 per GB).

5. I can rent movies all year, because we're no longer paying for the baseball cable package, and because Cinemail has cheaper plans.

We lose:

1. Red Sox games when they play the Blue Jays, which are available on cable TV but subject to local blackouts on MLBTV. It's only a handful of games a year, plus Allan is blacked out at work anyway. We'll listen to them on the radio (which I really enjoy). No biggie.

2. I will have to watch Coronation Street online.

3. My half-hour of TV before bed, a lifetime habit of how I fall asleep. Not sure what will happen with that, but I know I'm not paying for cable TV just to watch re-runs of The Simpsons.

And that's it. Allan doesn't watch any TV. My TV watching is very minimal. And now it's over.

* * * *

Movie season may be a bit more challenging, a combination of Cinemail, the library, streaming Netflix, and borrowed DVDs. But I've had it with Zip.

We still have to hook up the streaming-to-TV thing, but we have two months to work that out, plus at the minimum, we can certainly watch on our netbooks.

Predictably, when I called Rogers to cancel, they offered me all kinds of promotions to try to get me to stay, including a deep discount on TV. That just makes me more pissed off and determined to leave. As you know, I hate haggling.

11 comments:

laura k said...

I wonder if we might get some TV reception anyway:

Free TV in Toronto

BlogTO on free TV

Globe and Mail on free TV

Dharma Seeker said...

I cancelled my cable a few months ago. Bewteen antenna and watching shows online I save hundreds of dollars a month. It's funny because I always thought cable (HBO, The Movie Network, etc.) was the one luxury I couldn't live without. Who knew?

laura k said...

Yup, lots of people are cancelling cable! But they are probably not watching out-of-town sports. :)

Cool that you've discovered you can live without something you thought you couldn't live without! I like it.

Jere said...

In the ultimate irony*, after finally being able to see Red Sox games on TV because I moved into the Boston TV region after 30-something years, I now can't cancel cable because it's the ONLY way to see the Red Sox.

If MLB would just allow us to watch in-market games on mlb.tv, I could watch them that way. They actually claimed they would do this for all teams a few years ago, but last I checked it's only the Padres and Yanks who have that option.


*if not irony, just incredible shittiness

laura k said...

MLB might let you, but the cable companies run the show. The only way MLB could offer games online was to maintain cable's near-monopoly.

It's amazing that any markets have the option. I wonder if that means more pressure is on cable to allow competition.

I used to know more about these issues because the law firm I worked for in NYC represented several teams. Now I don't see those contracts anymore.

tornwordo said...

We have to keep cable since we offer it to our renters (furnished studio apts) but we've fallen in love with Netflix, and have the laptop hooked up to the TV and watch it almost every night. It cost less than twenty bucks for the cords to hook the laptop into the TV.

laura k said...

Another happy Netflix Canada subscriber, and also with laptop hooked up to the TV, as MSEH said. That might be the way to go for our 2nd TV, used mainly by me. Hmm. Thanks for the info.

James Redekop said...

On dumping cable.

laura k said...

James, thanks for that link. I took a quick peek at it, and the writer's situation may be analagous to mine. I see she or he got the NBA cable package, which substitutes for our MLB package. The writer adds in the cost of antennas, Roku, cables, the whole package. I'm going to read it closely.

laura k said...

3. My half-hour of TV before bed,

Looking back on this comment a year later, I find this very amusing. I obviously had no idea how many TV shows are available on Netflix. I have my choice of anything and everything that I might want to watch, whenever I want to watch it. Streaming > cable.

James Redekop said...

I'm having fun with streaming... I'm listening to "A Mad Man With A Box" podcast, in which the host had various people on to talk about their favourite Doctor Who episodes (classic or modern series). I'd gone back to watch some original series stories a while back and had trouble, because the quality is so uneven; but what I'm doing now is listening to the podcast discussions of favourites, then watching those -- which bypasses a lot of the poorer stuff, and has turned out to be a lot of fun.