I will tell you about the products first and then the great ways to stream!
You can use an antenna to get local channels. Please keep in mind that if you have an HDTV you will need a converter box for most of these to work. Antennas like the one pictured can start as low as 9.98. However, the converter boxes start at around $40 and work their way up quickly.
Some Blu Ray players like the Sony BDP-S3100 Blu-ray Disc Player with Wi-Fi cost as little as $88 and come with wi-fi. They are pre-programmed to offer some online options.
For this one you can get Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, and Amazon.
Systems such as the Sony Playstation 3, Nintendo Wii, and Xbox 360 can stream wirelessly with some programs. However, the Xbox 360 requires an Xbox Gold membership which runs about $59 a year in order to work. Systems like these start as low as $149 and go up from there.
The Roku 2 XD Streaming Player 1080p is what we went with. It costs $58 on sale right now. You can get Netflix, Hulu, Youtube, and countless others. There are 750 channels right now and they are always addnig more! There are MANY free channels you can watch. Some of these include an entire PBS channel where your child can watch great educational shows for free and a full MLB sports channel for the man in your life. R is very excited about the cooking with kids channel that offers countless recipes to make with kids. It was so easy to set up too! All you need is wireless internet and you are good to go!
Amazon Prime – Amazon Prime is $99 for the year. You will get many movies and shows streamed to your device. This breaks down to $8.25 a month. Even better, you also get free 2 day shipping on all prime items from Amazon!
Netflix – You can try Netflix for free for the first month. Netflix is a great way to stream many movies and tv shows. I can tell you they have almost all of the Doctor Who episodes as well as a ton of educational and kids programming! After your free trial you will pay $7.99 a month.
Hulu – With Hulu you will get your first week free. After than you will pay $7.99 a month. You can watch most TV shows the day after they air on TV. While you will wait a day for some shows, think of how much sits in your DVR waiting it’s turn. You can do it! You can wait a day. After a short time you won’t know the difference.
What did you pick?
I went with the Roku. Here is my price breakdown.
Cable price before cancelling – $60 a month or $720 a year!!!
What I purchased:
Amazon Prime – $79 for the year or $6.59 a month
Netflix – $7.99 a month
Hulu – $7.99 a month
Roku – $58 one time purchaseThat comes out to $328.76 for the year.
If you break down monthly payments taking out the fact that prime is paid annually and you now own your Roku you will pay only $16 a month for a lot more programming than you previously had and the control to decide what you really want to watch.
Even with purchasing the Roku I have saved $391.24 a year!
Now imagine what my budget will look like each year without that fine included.
If I have forgotten an option you think is a must have please leave me a comment. I would be glad to check it out and add it if it works great!