Wednesday, February 25, 2015

How to cut cable and keep ESPN {and other live sports}

We have experimented with cutting cable in the past, but it ended up lasting only for a summer. 

You may not know this, but this mama cannot live without her college football and basketball which requires access to ESPN. 

I've always said I would get rid of cable as soon as I could get ESPN from another source. That day has finally come.

Enter: Sling TV

For only $20/month I get access to the following channels: ESPN, ESPN2, Disney Channel, ABC Family, Food Network, HGTV, Travel Channel, TNT, CNN, TBS, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, and Best of Maker. {Supposedly, they are also adding more channels in the future.} I care mostly about the ESPN channels and HGTV. 

Additionally you get full access to the Watch ESPN app and there is NOT a contract. 

Between Sling TV and my Leaf Antenna {which gets you access to all the free HD channels that stream via antenna these days}, I pretty much can watch all of the sporting events we that we care about. 

{Side note: bad weather can interrupt your antenna reception. We had this problem last night. Not good timing as our basketball time was playing a rival. Solution = watch espn app over LTE on my phone.}

Even sweeter, Amazon is running a promotion right now that gets you a *free* Amazon Fire TV Stick when you sign up for 3 months of Sling TV. {I'm sure this offer is for a limited time only.}

I'm hoping this is finally my solution to be rid of cable forever. 

My impressions so far? The quality is awesome, especially for all of the channels that can buffer ahead. Our internet is 20 GB download speed and Sling TV streams in 1080p. The picture is crystal clear when streaming Netflix. I will say the live sports are not *quite* as clear as they were with cable due to being broadcast live. However, it's such a small difference that we think we can get used to it.

Here's a price comparison. My previous monthly bill:

Cable + Internet Bundle: $114 with 1 year promotion

My new bill:

Internet: $53
Sling TV: $20
= $73/month

I'm loving the savings already.

Sling TV also has $5 add on packages for more sports channels or kids channels for those of you who want more options. 

It may not be the perfect solution for everyone, but so far it's working for us! 

*this post contains affiliate links*


  1. Just wondering if you are still happy with this solution. I happened upon your blog today while I was looking up DIY drop cloth slipcovers on Pinterest.

    1. Megan, Thanks for your question! Yes, we are still very happy with this solution. Since we switched 5 months ago, our only complaint is that we have had 2 instances of continuous buffering which made it difficult to watch TV. Both times we reset our internet modem and the problem resolved. I love being free from cable, and really don't mind the small selection of channels. Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any other questions.

    2. Also, if you decide to try the DIY drop cloth recover, then send me a picture when you're finished! I would love to see your finished result.

    3. Looks like we will be "cutting the cable" in the next few weeks after we purchase our Leaf. We are going to try out Sling at that time. Any suggestions on internet providers or DVRs? Thanks!

    4. Congrats Megan! We have Time Warner Cable internet and it runs at a download speed of ~19 Mbps. We pay $54/month for the service and it gives us what we need to sufficiently watch TV through the internet. As for DVR, we don't have one. SlingTV does allow you to go back and watch some shows on re-run for a few days. Hope this help! Let me know if you have any more questions.


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