The FCC has ruled that you can get your cable TV through devices besides your company’s cable box. The ruling means that instead of having to rent the box from, say, Time Warner, Comcast, or ATT Uverse, you will be able to add that subscription onto your Apple TV, Fire TV, Android TV and Roku boxes.
You still have to have a cable subscription, but the massive rental fees will be a thing of the past.
What does that really mean?
Well, it’s going to give cable companies some competition and hopefully reduce the amount of money you have to spend every month.
It’s not a done deal yet, but this is the first step in what is likely inevitable as industry standards change and people are cutting the cord in droves.
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler tweeted this today:
Cable companies seem to be realizing (finally) that most consumers are fed up with their customer service.
Time Warner, which had a less-than-stellar reputation, has even started a campaign to make themselves look better with shorter wait times for customer service calls and two hour windows for house calls.
Comcast customers suffer reputably the worst customer service in the industry, and the majority of them will likely embrace this FCC ruling as the crack in the armor to free themselves from being a “Comcast Cable Fee Prisoner.”
How we get our entertainment has been rapidly changing since the introduction of streaming services.
Netflix and Amazon have been producing their own content (literally dismantling the studio distribution model that shaped Hollywood as we know it), people are watching on phones and tablets, and even basic cable channels have apps you can get almost anywhere.
Major cable channels like HBO long ago understood the implications of the VOD (Video On Demand) trend, and already allow you to watch their shows without a separate cable subscription for a simple viewing fee.
The breakthrough’s that ROKU originally brought with their free and Private Channels has multiplied the rich Content available to the masses exponentially beyond original comprehension. AppleTV and GoogleTV have both followed suit with Private Channels, and throngs of Original Content Developers have begun filling servers with video sure to satisfy every possible genre.
And, the streaming industry is just getting started …
In a press release, Massachusetts Senator Edward J. Markey said, “The FCC’s new framework for innovators and companies to develop new technologies that allow consumers to access video programming without having to rent a box from their pay-TV provider is smart, fair and a long time in coming. The FCC’s action will help ensure that consumers are not captive to high video box leasing fees forever.”
The bottom line is that this FCC ruling means that cable customers previously unaware of affordable options to be free of excessive fees and service schemes will now be able to consider viable alternatives without giving up quality of their viewing experience.
Let the Bells of Cable Freedom Ring Loud!