Streaming Methods

Compare TV and Movie Streaming Services and Sites

Streaming services have slowly grown in popularity and stature. What started as a supplement to the all- encompassing television entertainment, has today replaced television for most people. These cord cutters use streaming services as their exclusive mode of entertainment now. This has been made possible, in large part, because of the breadth of content available with these services, their affordability, and more importantly, the flexibility they offer their customers. Here is a comparison of some of the popular streaming services and what they have to offer.

Netflix

Netflix free subscription stream television

You probably have heard of this and if you are thinking of cutting the cable, you would have certainly come across Netflix. Netflix is the Godfather of streaming services. It offers a lot of programming from movies to popular television shows. The service is a goldmine for movie buffs. There are new titles updated regularly, and some of the latest releases are up for grabs. As far as the television shows are concerned, Netflix hosts a good collection of those too. However, you should know that the television shows are not updated frequently, and you may find many popular shows missing from the lineup.

After the recent revision of rates, a new Netflix subscription will cost you $9.99. This is not a bad deal still, considering the vast library of content you will have access to. A point worth noting here is that since Netflix has been around for many years now, almost all devices that can stream content can access Netflix. So, you do not have to worry about hardware incompatibility at all. Also, the experience of so many years has helped Netflix build an exceptional recommendation system. This means that even if you do not know what to watch Netflix can tell you, based on your previous choices, and you can be introduced to some really good movies.

Amazon Prime Instant Video

Amazon instant prime video television television selection online

Amazon Prime Instant Video is another major streaming service in the market that has been very well- received by the customers. The reason is actually two-pronged. One is, of course, the content. In a short period of time, Amazon Prime Instant Video is quite close to catching up with the huge content library of Netflix. Amazon has entered a lot of partnerships with companies like Viacom to make sure that it has a constant flow of high quality content at its disposal, and this move has borne fruit. Secondly, Amazon has offered a lot of freebies to the subscribers of the service. On subscription, users get access to free two- day Amazon shipping, one free eBook from the Kindle library, access to Amazon Music, and more.

Amazon Prime Instant Video offers a lot of content in terms of both movies and television shows. But, other than that, it also offers offline viewing, which is something Netflix does not do. So, if you are going to travel, you can download content when you have an internet connection, and watch it later, when you do not have online access.

The subscription fee for Amazon Prime Instant Video costs $99 a year, and if you want more flexibility, you can always go for the newly introduced monthly package of $10.99.

HBO Now

HBO now stellar lineup

Yes, this is the streaming service from the well-known channel, HBO. In fact, HBO was one of the first major channels that came out with its own service, HBO GO. But, HBO GO could only be accessed if you had a TV login. The good part was that you could run multiple streams at the same time. With HBO Now, the channel could be accessed directly online.

Given the high quality content, it is only obvious that the charges will be on the expensive side too. They are indeed. Users have to pay as much as $14.99 for one subscription. There is a trial version available too, in all major online stores, including Google Play, the App Store, and so on. It runs on any device that can stream videos and is connected to a high speed internet connection. There is only a lag of an hour or sometimes, even minutes, between the HBO shows broadcasted live on cable and those being streamed online.

Price is one of the biggest factors that may deter the users from using the services. While other streaming services offer a lot of content for a much less price, HBO Now will only offer HBO content. However, for the fans of HBO and especially for the love of shows like Game of Thrones, this purchase may be justified. But, still there are better deals in the market if you are not that big a fan.

VUDU

VUDU streaming home and family big selection movies

Most of the pay-as-you-go services do not have a sizeable content library to go with them. But, VUDU is one service that actually boasts of a good content library. VUDU actually began as a set-top box manufacturer, before Walmart bought it. Now, it has transformed VUDU into a powerful movie and TV show rental service that is growing at a rapid pace. In fact, among all the pay-as-you-go streaming services, this is actually the one that has gained the highest traction and enjoys the higher users. The service offers different apps, because of which it is available on a variety of platforms, and devices.

The best thing about VUDU is that it updates TV shows as they are aired. Most of them are aired within a day or two, and you can catch up with entire seasons if you want. VUDU’s movie library is extensive, and you will find everything from the latest movies to the classic old films. Its TV show library, although not as big, is sizeable. You pay a standard price of $1.99 per movie or TV show episode. Further, HD content costs $2.99. However, other types of content, such as sneak previews and extras might cost significantly higher. So, don’t be surprised.

There is one more thing you should know about VUDU. It is a growing service, and it does need a lot of improvements. For instance, closed captioning is not available on all platforms with VUDU. Neither do you get content suggestions based on your previous rentals. However, it appears that it will grow to become a sizeable player in the streaming market in 2016. 

the blacklist logo

The Blacklist TV Series

The Blacklist is an NBC crime drama that debuted on the network on September 23, 2013. The show is created by Jon Bokenkamp, who is also one of the executive producers. The show was a hit among the audience and NBC ordered another season on December 3, 2013. In the October of 2015, the series was renewed for the third time. The recent season of the popular series will premiere on NBC on October 1, 2015. You can watch all the exciting episodes online with a subscription to one of these Charter Internet Plans.

the blacklist kings of the highway

The Blacklist started off with the capture of Raymond Reddington (played by James Spader). This guy is a former officer of the United Stated Navy, who has now turned to a life of crime. He is one of the most wanted criminals of the country, but his sudden capture raises more questions than it answers. On being detained, RaymondReddingtonmakes an interesting statement. He tells Herold Cooper, the Director of the Counterterrorism Division, (played by Harry Lennix), that he can reveal to them the names and details of operations of a dangerous terrorist. The person he is offering is a threat to the national security and so sly that he has managed to remain under the radar and out of the reach of the FBI. But, in exchange, he wants total immunity. He also makes another strange request that he would work only with an inexperienced FBI agent, Elizabeth Keen (played by Megan Boone). Cooper does find his choice of agent odd and doubtful, but he complies anyway.

the blacklist character

Reddington walks the talk and helps the FBI in nabbing the wanted terrorist. This is when Reddington reveals that he is not a one trick pony, and his life of crime has helped him compile a rather long list of wanted criminals.He calls his list of criminals the Blacklist, which contains all the information about some of the worst enemies of the United States, about whom the FBI has no clue. He does not hide his own vested interest in taking these terrorists out either. Simultaneously,thestoryalsofocuseson the personal lives of the lead characters and why Elizabeth was Reddington’s stubborn and only choice. But, it is revealed over the course of three seasons.

the blacklist cast member

The show has received positive reviews across the board. The critics have loved the intriguingstoryline and the fine performances by the actors. The audience also has greatly appreciated the show and millions have tuned in to see the weekly episodes. James Spader, in particular, has left quite a mark. He has been appreciated for delivering a character with many layers. He has completely done justice to the complex role and has managed to not overdo it. Megan Boone, has also been applauded for her portrayal of the FBI agent, who is all of a sudden in the limelight. She has brought forward the character with her genuine acting. The other cast members like Diego Klattenhoff, Ryan Eggold, Parminder Nagra, Harry Lennix, and so on, have also been praised.

The third season of the show has been going strong too, with great reviews from all quarters. The Blacklist is undoubtedly one of the best crime drama shows on television right now and is slated to finish strong, just like the previous two seasons.

How Big of A Threat is Cord Cutting to Traditional TV in the USA?

It began with Netflix’s streaming service and has now begun a staple in most modern homes: streaming TV shows and movies is becoming more and more common; and with the advances in streaming services, more people are choosing to go ahead with “cord cutting” their traditional cable. In this case, “cord cutting” refers to people who chose to give up their traditional cable services in favor of using streaming services exclusively. But is cord cutting really a big thread to traditional television in the USA? Let’s take a closer look at what cord cutting really means, why people are choosing to cut their cable cords, and what potential ramifications it could have on traditional TV services.

 

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Why People Are Choosing Streaming Services Over Traditional TV

There are three key differences between traditional TV and streaming services which are drawing more and more people to cut their traditional TV cords.  These differences are: price, selection, and scheduling. The most deciding factor for people choosing to cut cable is the cost. Traditional cable TV services typically cost more than streaming services—although people who purchase subscriptions to multiple streaming services sometimes come close to the cost of normal cable. And streaming services often have a much wider range of TV and film programming than traditional cable, particularly older shows that are often not available through cable services; more importantly, people now want to watch specific shows without having to pay for a bundle with hundreds of channels that they do not want to watch. The third important factor—scheduling—is a result of people’s changing priorities in how they watch television. People no longer want to race home to catch a TV show as it airs, but would prefer to be able to watch it whenever they want, without having to worry about schedules.

How Does Cord Cutting Impact Traditional TV?

Simply put: fewer people are choosing traditional TV, which means that traditional TV companies are seeing a decrease in their overall subscriptions. This could definitely impact these companies, particularly if their main source of investment are related to traditional TV subscription fees. Some companies have even taken to raising the prices for their subscription services, although this has backfired in the past, since price is a major deciding factor in people choosing to cut their cords.

What Can Traditional TV Companies Do?

There is no doubt that cord cutting is impacting traditional TV in the USA. However, it is not the end of traditional TV—if traditional TV companies are able to respond in the right way. Traditional TV companies should not look at streaming services as the end of an era or as the ‘enemy.’ They should instead embrace the newest evolutions in people’s TV habits and attempt to adapt with the times.

Some networks are already adapting to these changes. HBO  which was once only available with expensive cable packages, announced its own streaming service package for people who want to watch HBO shows without paying for cable.

Things You Didn’t Know About Shameless

Shameless

Shameless is an American television dramedy that airs on Showtime. It’s a remake of the British award-winning series of the same name, the American version set in Chicago’s Canaryville, a south side neighborhood. The show began airing in January of 2011, with the show being renewed for a sixth season in January of 21015.

The show focuses on the dysfunctional family of Frank Gallagher, single father of six and frequent drunk. His children learn to take care of themselves in lieu of either parental figure to guide them along. The show differs from other work-class American shows, in that Shameless isn’t a blue- or white-collar family, and the father’s alcoholism directly affects his family. The show is darker and is presented not as some far off world, or in the South, but in your very own backyard. The show’s developer originally went around pitching the show, he had to fight tooth and nail to prevent the core of the show’s location being changed. “We have a comedic tradition of making fun of the people in those worlds. The reality is that these people aren’t ‘the other’ – they’re people who live four blocks down from you and two blocks over.”

The feedback for Shameless has been mostly positive, with the first season receiving a 66 overall rating on Metacritic, indicating generally favorable reviews, and the second season receiving a 76, indicating increasing favorable reviews. Tim Goodman of The Hollywood Reporter commented that “Shameless is excellent, compelling television from the first moment. As long as it stays true to the roots of the original, it’s going to be essential viewing.” The fourth episode of the first season retained 100% of its premiere audience, making Shameless the best performing freshman drama on Showtime.  Rotten Tomatoes gave the show a 74% fresh rating based on 31 reviews, with the consensus that, “Shameless is a dark, urban dramedy that overcomes its leaps of logic thanks to fantastic casting, intriguing ambiance, and shock value.” As of 2015, seasons 2-5 have a 100% rating.

The most interesting aspect of Shameless is its open and unapologetic display of a family in despair, a family suffering from a father’s inability to bring himself to care about anyone or anything outside of his need for repressing his life. It’s a story that talks about the dark, less comfortable aspects of life, but does so with both meaning and purpose. In particular, it brings to mind and possible discussion the portrayal of sexuality and rape as it’s presented on television. It calls into question the preconceived notions we as a country have about family, and what it means to be a parent. It calls into question what is commonly assumed as someone else’s problem and presents it as something that’s happening right down the street. These ideas aren’t often expressed so blatantly on television, and especially not in a way that forces its viewers to question their own preconceptions of what is and is not reality.

Shameless is a show that isn’t afraid to talk about the darker aspects of the human condition, and isn’t afraid to engage these issues head-on. It’s a show that isn’t ashamed to push boundaries and challenge commonly held preconceptions. it’s a show worth watching if you’re looking for something that makes you think, something that encourages hours of self-reflection and introspective understanding.  Look at AT&T U-verse Deals to find more television entertainment options.

4 Things You Never Knew About The Big Bang Theory

BBT

The Big Bang Theory is one of the most popular comedies on television; it is also often considered the smartest due to the frequent references to science, math, astronomy and other spheres of knowledge. The show, which is currently in its 8th season, has proven to be one of the mainstays of primetime comedy. But just how much do you really know about this hit show? Let’s look at 4 things that you never knew about The Big Bang Theory.

The show’s pilot was rejected

The original pilot of the show was rejected by every network that the producers pitched it to; the original pilot was also a vastly different show. In the original pilot for The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon and Leonard are shown in the process of getting money by donating to a sperm bank—adult jokes abounded in the original pilot, which was noticeably raunchier than the final incarnation of the show. Instead of the sweet and naïve Penny, a sarcastic, street-hardened girl named Katie was going to be the object of Leonard’s affections. And Leonard, far from being socially shy, is bold enough to ask the down-on-her-luck Katie to become his roommate!

Jim Parsons doesn’t like Star Trek

Sheldon is definitely the biggest pop culture nerd on the show—ask him anything about  Star Trek, Doctor Who or just about anything science-fiction and he can rattle off the perfect answer. However, Jim Parsons, the actor who plays Sheldon in the show, has admitted that he doesn’t really like science-fiction; in fact, he doesn’t even like Star Trek and has never willingly watched an entire episode!

Most of the character’s physical quirks are improvised

Although some of the character’s personality quirks are scripted by the writers, many of their physical quirks—such as Sheldon’s trademark creepy smile—were invented and improvised by the actors. In the script, for example, Sheldon is only described as having an “unpleasant” or “unusual” smile. It was Jim Parsons who decided on the specifics.

Sheldon’s t-shirts mean something

The show’s writers have revealed that there is more to Sheldon’s t-shirt choices than meets the eye: in fact, the colors of his shirts are often used as a mood reflector. If Sheldon is wearing a red shirt, chances are, he’s angry; if he is wearing blue, he is hopeful or in a good mood, and so on. Jump over to this website for more info about home entertainment opportunities.

3 Other Directions the Marley & Me TV Should Could Take

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NBC recently announced that it had greenlit a pilot based on the film and memoir, Marley and Me (2008). The TV series would be a single-camera comedy that would pick up where the film left off, after the death of the Grogan family’s beloved pet Marley. The show would center on the family moving to Florida and adopting the abused puppy of a neighbor that—coincidentally—just so happens to behave as energetically and destructively as the first Marley. The family even gives this new puppy Marley’s old tag and leash, which they brought with them to Florida.

The idea of adapting a television show based on Marley & Me isn’t a bad one—in fact, based on the success of the original film; it could be a wise investment. However, many fans of the film, memoir and even the additional children’s books penned by Grogan are not too happy with the proposed direction of the pilot; namely because it seems to downplay Marley as an individual dog by replacing him with a lookalike and act-a-like copy.

There is other concept directions that the show could take that would allow NBC to capitalize on the popularity of the ‘Marley’ property without diminishing the integrity of the story.

After the success of the memoir and the resulting film, author Josh Grogan returned to the idea of “Marley” to pen a series of children’s books loosely based on Marley’s life. The books feature Marley living with a fictional family, where he brings joy, frustration and—of course—love to the lives of the people (and even the dogs!) around him. There are two Marley book series penned by Grogan; one is aimed at slightly older readers while the other is a series of picture books which often feature storylines based around holidays, important life lessons and, of course, Marley getting into mischief.

Instead of attempting to shoehorn in a ‘new’ Marley into the Grogan family’s lives, NBC could look at adapting the Marley picture books to be suitable for a television series. The show could be aimed at a slightly younger audience—think Disney Channel tweens—but it would still be suitable for the earlier primetime slots on NBC’s schedule. This particular direction would avoid the tackiness of the conceived pilot and give younger audiences a way to enjoy Marley’s adventures.

 

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Looking For A Better Broadband Plan?

Do not take your frustration over the internet out on your computer anymore. There is a solution to the madness and frustration you feel when you cannot do what you want on the internet. Cable TV Providers are your best option for all your house service needs. These providers do not just offer cable TV, they will also offer you high-speed broadband internet.

They will always offer you the best quality for the best price, no matter who else you look up. They surpass Dial-Up, DSL and even Satellite with their high quality and performance. With these cable internet providers, you can do what you want, when you want. No waiting, no hassle, no time wasted and no more beating your keyboard or mouse.

Your local internet service provider will offer you up to 105 Mbps. This is enough speed to make sure you can do anything you want. Upload, Download, Stream and even play all your favorite games. Sometimes, even all at once. You can also do this with Wi-Fi. This still gives you up to 105 Mbps while allowing you free range of your home or even your porch with your internet enabled devices. With these internet services you also get free online security and free Parental Controls. The internet security will offer you the best in security by giving you protection from malware, spyware, Trojans and much more.

It will also protect you from hackers and identity thieves so that you can surf the web without worrying about your personal documents or identity. The Parental Controls help with your kids’ online time and even their safety. It will allow you to control how much time they get on the internet each day and will also allow you to monitor online chats and recent activities. This way you no longer have to worry about what they see or whether their chores and homework is done. This means a little less to stress during the day.

Your local ISP will offer you home phone and cable TV as well. With all of these you will be able to choose a bundled plan from them. These plans come in very handy at the end of the month. When you get a bundled plan, you get home phone, cable internet and cable TV for one low monthly payment. No searching through papers to find the bill for every service in the home anymore. They will even offer you free online bill pay.

This means you don’t have to send in a check or even call them, you get an easy to read statement in the mail and even online. You can pay however late at night you want. This makes it easy to remember and easy to pay. When you bundle your services together, your local ISP will also give you a monthly discount for bundling. This way, your wallet does not feel empty and you no longer have to stress about how much bundling is going to cost extra.

Simon Cowell Can Be Very Insulting!

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Simon Cowell

 

His first insult was directed at his mother. At the age of four, he informed his mother that her white hat made her look “like a poodle.” We all know him as the guy that says, “It’s a no from me.” He’s the tough guy, the judge that never backs down and loves to dish out sarcasm, insults and criticism. Some love him, many more hate him. His name? Simon Cowell.

Born in London in 1959, Simon Cowell has risen to fame as a judge on the British television music competition, The X Factor, since 2004. Following his amazing success on the X Factor, Simon Cowell went on to develop Got Talent, a talent show not limited only to musical performances. Simon Cowell quickly became the executive producer of America’s Got Talent, the American version of Britain’s X Factor.

But, it was Simon’s unfailing ability to say it like it is on Pop Idol, a British reality show, that pushed his name to the top in British households. Once he created American Idol, he was known across the entire world as a man that will not waste his words. When it comes to judging, he will say it like it is – like it or not.

Even though most of us know Cowell from his tough persona on various talent shows across Britain and the United States, did you know that he also created ABC’s American Inventor, as well as Celebrity Duets, Grease Is the Word and the game show Red or Black? Clearly he has not limited himself to talent shows and musical competitions.

One would never have guessed that the man who started working at EMI Music Publishing would so quickly rise to the top in the music industry. Simon Cowell is now known by name in homes across all of Europe and the United States – as well as the rest of the world.

Most recently, Simon Cowell has been working as a judge on the X Factor, and made headlines for revealing his singing abilities by singing Elvis’ Can’t Help Falling in Love. He claims it was “the worst night” he’s ever done, but his fellow judges disagree. Apparently Cowell has many more talents than he chooses to reveal!

Satellite TV for Everyone

Ever gone into a hotel, turned on the television and checked what channels there are only to be disappointed by the limited number of programs you can watch? Ever tried a satellite television package only to find out that there are a few more channels you would like to have? Finding the complete package to cater to a family’s needs is hard to find. Luckily there is a satellite network that provides high definition programming at great rates that fit everyone – Dish Network Satellite TV.

DishTV has several packages to fit anyone’s needs starting with the Smart Pack. The Smart Pack has more than 55 channels and is perfect for people who are in budget or families who are just starting out.

Next up, America’s Top 120, this package has 30 music channels, Disney, CNN, Discovery and EPSN and more than 120 channels that go along with it. For a wee bit more, get America’s Top 120 Plus package and get regional Fox Sports programs, Fox Soccer channel and FUEL TV.

America’s Top 200 is for the sports fan as this has several sports programming such as NFL, MBL and NHL networks plus CBS Sports Network and NBA TV and it has a channel for every sports league with 60 SiriusXM Music Channels. What more can a true blue sports fan ask for?

The America’s Top 250 package comes with all the aforementioned channels plus Nat Geo Wild and 17 movie channels, this package is definitely for the movie junkie.

The Everything Pack gives customers well.. Everything! From sports, to lifestyle shows, to commercial free movies and to music programs. Everyone in the family can watch their favorite shows.

How can the entire family watch their favorite shows when there is only one television or the shows are on the same air time? Dish has the answer for that, The Hopper by Dish Network. The Hopper has the ability to record up to 6 shows simultaneously and save up to 500 hours of programs be it TV, HD, or from on demand selections.

Over 15,000 titles for the on demand selection! All these can be watched on a tablet, smart phone or laptop so getting stuck at the office or traveling will never be an excuse to miss a show. The Hopper, with the latest technology in HD-DVR, can skip commercials and locate the remote control. No more searching, no more fighting who held the remote last, with the DISH TV Hopper. It guarantees a better viewing experience than any other service available for the best price, for everyone.