Back to top

On Cutting the Comcast Cable TV Cord: How many rooms should be wired

We moved to a new house about a year ago. In the process we left our TV in the old house for "staging" which meant it was there for 6 months (it's hard to sell a house now, apparently). In the mean time we watched a ton of Hulu and Netflix instant shows on our 15" computer. This has been relatively glorious.

Cutting the Cable TV cord

With the TV in the old house and our computers in the new we moved our high-speed-internet service (delivered by Comcast over cable) to the new house but shut off the TV service. Luckily Hulu and Netflix ably filled in the gap. We're watching weird and great shows, documentaries, and even adver-tainment like the Ford Focus Rally (although having to endure commercials in the middle of adver-tainment grated on our nerves enough that we stopped).

Hulu has a rolling schedule where they drop content. We can't see old episodes of the Chicago Code (our favorite new show). In a year or two, though, they should be on Netflix. It seems like every day Netflix gets more and more instant content. Amazon's got some instant offering, but we haven't run out of content on Netflix+Hulu enough to worry about what Amazon might have for us. I would love for the BBC's Junkyard Wars to be opened up on Hulu or Netflix. Right now it's making zero money from the American market - why not let it out? So it seems like our TV watching needs will be fulfilled by on-demand media delivered by Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and companies like them.

So long, physical media

We have several bookshelves and boxes full physical media: books, journals, magazines, CDs, DVDs. Our TV is currently used primarily to watch DVDs. But the transition is clear: even though high def TV with surround sound is fun, the immediacy of on-demand video media wins. If nothing else it means we can eliminate about one quarter of the furniture in our house since it is designed strictly for holding and showcasing our physical media!

We'll keep some of those items since it is nice to occasionally read a physical book, but even at the relatively low 480p resolution we prefer Netflix and Hulu. And, of course, that 480p is only getting better and better. We're trading scratched DVDs for streaming slow-downs and happy to do it.

How many rooms to wire?

About 10 years ago the biggest problem when you moved into your apartment or house was how to network everything. You had DSL or cable high speed internet in one room and wanted to also have it in others, whether those were roommates or a second computer. So new homes in the last 10 years all have ethernet cabling built right in. As of about 8 years ago nobody cares about the ethernet cabling because we all just use WiFi.

So if we're getting internet over Wifi and TV over internet - how many rooms need to have Cable TV sent to them?

We're currently debating that question as we get our house rewired (it had a fire-hazard combination of Federal Pacific panel in the garage and a non-grounded panel on the back of the house - yummy). So far our plan is one cable delivering internet to one room of the house and we'll rip out the cable to the rest of them. Telephone...ditto. We stopped using a land-line in 2001 when I had sprint and Nikki had a Cricket phone. But some day we may actually want DSL so we'll keep at least a little twisted-pair in the house to deliver that.

People Involved: 


Wow! Seems like you went

Wow! Seems like you went through a lot but I don't know how you could go without TV and use your computer. I'm a big fan of watching TV. It's mainly because I love to watch all my sports live even when I'm not at home. I guess that is why I am thankful to be a customer and employee for DISH because they have so much to offer me for my money. My favorite that they have is the Sling adapter. It allows me to watch live TV everywhere I go and my DVR recordings so I never have to be without my shows or games. DISH also has the new Blockbuster Movie Pass, which allows me to stream thousands of on demand titles, get movie in the mail and have 20 additional movie channels from DISH. SO don't cut the cord or get Netflix, just come to DISH and get more for your money. I have to say it is really worth your money.