*to Hanlon's razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Cutting the TV cable

Cable TV cord-cutters, anyone? Anyone done the HDTV antenna and/or Internet route?

Our new (Toronto) building only has Rogers, which we hate, and no sane Canadian will disagree.  Their cheapest package is $40 and gives us feck-all, and the next option worth considering costs double and adds precious little. We have Bell cellular already (and can add Internet but not Bell TV, because stupidity*).  I want to live long enough to see the cable business die, and Rogers go bankrupt.  Who has a land-line anymore?

If it were up to me, no TV, minimal online streaming.  That's how my English media rolled in Japan.  In Japan, reading I could not do without; TV shows just jerk you around to watch more commercials; I missed watching movies, but not enough to do much about it.  My J-wife watches too much TV, even though Japanese TV's about as pleasant as a root canal done by a vaginaless sex-bot with a dental drill voice, the dentist's office painted in bad trip on 'Tina'.  So of course she wants Japanese TV 'for the kids': NHK.

We can get one Japanese TV channel from Rogers or Bell for $20, on top of the cost of any other service: $40 for the most basic, which has only what we'll pick up free with an antenna from the unit we have high up, facing the right direction.  So, fuck cable from our last choice company: we're going with a 'smart tv', HD antenna, Netflix subscription**, and a 'Wavecast' box sending shows from her mother's for Japanese indoctrination: hooks into Japanese cable input, and Internet for output including cloud storage PVR.   I might buy our own PVR to store English shows, except why bother when I can watch from Netflix on my own schedule.

I'm going to be run out of this most conventional city for breaking the PB mold:
- no cable
- no car
- no diet of sugar
- no half-million-plus mortgage on next to no money down
- no willingness to line-up at 'happening' restaurants

*Not available in building, even though good Bell Internet is, and the speed is high enough to support Bell TV which comes via Internet.  Rogers bought off the builder?
**Of course I would never use a proxy to access the US' much better service...


  1. We use keyhole TV to live stream Japanese TV when we want to watch it, though usually tend to download with subtitles.

    TV is the worst everywhere. While my mum was here, she watched TV constantly. It's been so long since I watched it, I'd forgotten how annoying it is. Luckily I only had 3 days of it or matricide might've looked like a good alternative.

    I have about 2 shows I'll watch on a weekly base and download them because I can't stand ads and also some shows (ie. Game of Thrones) is only shown on cable here. I'm not paying for cable to watch one show so screw them. Otherwise, I just binge watch stuff if I get recommendations from trusted sources.

    Btw, if you haven't got a smart tv, steer clear of Sony. Ours is as temperamental as fuck.

    1. Fuck Sony: Korea's the new Japan.

      Keyhole's English is wack! Reminds me of video game instructions we'd get in 1980. Thanks for the link: sent to my wife's email as she's sleeping, and I have no memory. Also love its Wikipedia page:

      "KeyHoleTV only has a very limited selection of channels, such as TV Asahi, NHK, Fuji TV, TBS, TV Tokyo, and Nippon TV."

      That's about all there is...

    2. "Korea's the new Japan" would be a great blog post, but I've not been yet.

      I have a Samsung Galaxy s3, and she has and LG G3. Nothing fancy and stupid like Japanese phones with TV (Why would anyone watch TV in Japan?! How is there a market for phones with that shite?) but does everything they are supposed to do consistently. You know, like how Japanese cars and electronics killed America's once.

    3. We had a choice between Sony and Samsung - same price, same size, not much difference in the specs and went with Sony because a workmate had one and recommended it. Stupid decision. I should've quizzed him more carefully about what he used it for because we watch mainly downloaded files. Also stupid because with everything else, I'm Samsung's bitch - phone, tablet, camera etc.

      Korea's the new Japan would be a bit of an underestimation of Korea. Japan's pretty much had a fucked up economy forever with one moment in the sun (no pun intended) while Korea (should say South Korea really) seems to be more of a rapid but sustainable growth.

      Definitely worth a visit. Seoul has an energy and vibrancy that Tokyo lacks. According to everyone I know who has lived there though, it's a bitch of place to live. Longer working hours than Japan, and they are working hours not just hours spent on the job.

  2. I budget about 100 dollars per month for cable and internet (ours is in a package) and get maybe 25 dollars worth of use out of them each month. Needless to say, I have at least one reason to hate myself...

    1. Why on Earth are you paying for cable in Japan? Must be the same reason as I had: Japanese significant-other.

    2. Actually, I've had it for years, but given my current situation, yeah... it's mainly for her benefit.

  3. I abandoned cable TV back around 2003. I had nothing until about 2009 when I caved to the husbands pressure and got cable internet. With that I got Netflix, naturally. I don't miss television programming or commercials. And I am enjoy the freedom of choosing what to watch and when.