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SXIPro

JM781 Big Bore
Joined
Mar 17, 2006
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Here on the 'X' mostly
#1
My mom is on a limited income especially since my Dad passed. Looking to save her some $$ on her expenses. One of her big monthly bills is for her tv/internet/phone services and her cell bill. She does need a land line because of her health and because the land line is used for some weird monitoring system from the hospital.

What are the cheapest providers out there? Maybe straight talk for cell? She doesn't need a DVR, just basic TV for local news and weather. She has a DVD player for movies and crap. And she does need internet for sure.

Thanks for any input.
 

DAG

No Risk It, No Bisquick
Joined
Apr 19, 2006
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3,570
Location
Charlotte, NC
#3
For Cell I've been with Project Fi since 2015. I average $27-29/mo phone bill and never had a problem with service. Prior to Fi I used straight talk and it was also nice but $45-50/mo after fees. Anyone paying for cell data when there is so much open wifi available is moronic.

TV get a nice digital antenna
If shes tech savy get a streaming device with kodi

internet/landline is going to very by region
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2007
Likes
13
Location
Lawrence, Kansas
#4
For Cell I've been with Project Fi since 2015. I average $27-29/mo phone bill and never had a problem with service. Prior to Fi I used straight talk and it was also nice but $45-50/mo after fees. Anyone paying for cell data when there is so much open wifi available is moronic.

TV get a nice digital antenna
If shes tech savy get a streaming device with kodi

internet/landline is going to very by region
Project FI in my area used Sprint last time I checked. . Sprint sucks as I used to be a customer and their coverage is/was horrible. Maybe that's changed, but that's how it was 2 years ago. I don't get your statement "Anyone paying for cell data when there is so much open wifi available is moronic." There's rarely open wifi in residential areas where most people live so what are people supposed to do except pay for data? It's also illegal to steal wifi if your neighbor has an unsecured access point and unsecured access points are relatively rare anyway. I wouldn't trust sending any data over unsecured wifi anyway because you never know who could be snooping.

As for TV, I agree, get an aerial and put it in your attic or mount it to the side of your house if you own one or get a digital antenna and mount it on the interior wall. We have one and get a ton of channels. Haven't subscribed to cable tv in years and don't miss it, but we also have amazon prime and Netflix.

I doubt kodi will be a solution for her. There are several free streaming sites, but by and large, if you want good free content, its going to be pirated and that's illegal as well.
 

DAG

No Risk It, No Bisquick
Joined
Apr 19, 2006
Likes
3,570
Location
Charlotte, NC
#5
Project FI in my area used Sprint last time I checked. . Sprint sucks as I used to be a customer and their coverage is/was horrible. Maybe that's changed, but that's how it was 2 years ago. I don't get your statement "Anyone paying for cell data when there is so much open wifi available is moronic." There's rarely open wifi in residential areas where most people live so what are people supposed to do except pay for data? It's also illegal to steal wifi if your neighbor has an unsecured access point and unsecured access points are relatively rare anyway. I wouldn't trust sending any data over unsecured wifi anyway because you never know who could be snooping.

As for TV, I agree, get an aerial and put it in your attic or mount it to the side of your house if you own one or get a digital antenna and mount it on the interior wall. We have one and get a ton of channels. Haven't subscribed to cable tv in years and don't miss it, but we also have amazon prime and Netflix.

I doubt kodi will be a solution for her. There are several free streaming sites, but by and large, if you want good free content, its going to be pirated and that's illegal as well.
ok Negative Nancy, what would you suggest? Keep in mind I'll be the gunslinger this time. There are pro's and con's for everything. I listed what I do and has worked well for me. If you dont like it... sorry?
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2007
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13
Location
Lawrence, Kansas
#6
ok Negative Nancy, what would you suggest? Keep in mind I'll be the gunslinger this time. There are pro's and con's for everything. I listed what I do and has worked well for me. If you dont like it... sorry?

Just sharing my experiences. I used to have Verizon but they are expensive but have great coverage. We went with Metro PCS and have 5 phones for $125 a month which is an amazing deal but probably not great for just one person. Freedom pop is an alternative. I gave the cons why I personally didn't like Project FI, but for some people it works well. I agreed with you that an aerial or digital antenna was the way to go. I'm still scratching my head over your free wifi comment though. Maybe your area has free wifi though at reduced speeds? I mean, I guess that could be a thing, but generally it's targeted towards lower income families.
 

motoman3000

ride
Site Supporter
Joined
Aug 14, 2012
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309
Location
new jersey
#8
TV get a nice digital antenna
If shes tech savy get a streaming device with kodi
Kodi, mobdro, terrarium(rip), is THE way to go for the moderate watcher. I’m all in at $30/mo for internet fees and couldn’t be happier. F Verizon


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

bird

walking on water
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Likes
360
Location
La Crosse, WI on the BIG River
#9
My mom is on a limited income especially since my Dad passed. Looking to save her some $$ on her expenses. One of her big monthly bills is for her tv/internet/phone services and her cell bill. She does need a land line because of her health and because the land line is used for some weird monitoring system from the hospital.

What are the cheapest providers out there? Maybe straight talk for cell? She doesn't need a DVR, just basic TV for local news and weather. She has a DVD player for movies and crap. And she does need internet for sure.

Thanks for any input.
What area/metro region is she near? Depending on the state you can get this stuff for free. Don't make me say it...Obama PHONE!

But seriously, there are plans for those on low incomes. Call and ask.

My mom had a cell phone but no internet. Luckily she had an Alltel contract that was bought out by Midwest Wireless, who was then bought by Verizon(I think). That old contract didn't have data limits, so I tethered her cell phone for internet. They were in northern Wisconsin, circa 2006, and broadband was just making it past Hwy 10. Her cell phone was 100kb speed, which was better than DSL at the time for that area.

I haven't had cable for years, went with a $12 antennae and get 23 channels locally. In college we shared internet with the neighbors, I even ran an Ethernet cable through the yards with a shovel. We all paid less than $6 a month for internet that way! Side note:How to have a house meeting in college, unplug cable modem and everyone is in the living room wondering why their pron isn't loading.

good luck
 
Joined
May 10, 2011
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371
Location
NYC/Long Island
#10
I haven't had cable for years, went with a $12 antennae and get 23 channels locally.
I kicked cable, but I watch Fox 5 local news in the morning .. So basically if the broadcasting station is close enough, then it works? Assuming it's in Manhattan then it shouldn't be more then a few miles from me.
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2018
Likes
138
Location
Atlanta
#11
If she has all of her services through the same provider, you can typically call a "retention" number directly instead of the general 1-800 number which goes to the inside sales department. These are the operators you get transferred to as a last ditch effort to keep you as a customer and have the ability to negotiate and adjust your bill. What I used to do before cutting cable was set my calendar to call a few days before my promotional contract would expire and renegotiate. For example, when I first signed up for AT&T Phone, TV & Internet I basically got everything at a 65% discount. I called each year and maintained the same bill for almost 6 years. In your case though, it may be cheaper to just get a good HD antenna and a cheap satellite internet service (HughesNet & Viasast).
 

Big Kahuna

Administrator
Joined
Jan 14, 2006
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8,216
Location
Tuscaloosa, AL
#12
We are looking at cutting the cord, just to damn expensive now for Cable, Internet, Phone (dont need landline, just came with the last package).............. What everybody doing.

We are looking at keeping Spectrum Internet, (but upgrade speed), and possibly going with either Dish or Amazon Firestick for streaming and Hulu Live TV for local channels plus ESPN, Fox Sports, etc etc............. With Spectrum with can get Cell Phone service for wife and getting Izzy a phone also, that would be $15.00 each for phone and data............
 

OCD Solutions

Original, Clean and Dependable Solutions
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Vendor Account
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Sep 19, 2006
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Savannah, GA
#13
My In-laws finally dropped cable and have been using Firestick for all their TV.
They get a ton of content but Mom hates it because she likes to watch what she wants, when she wants.
I bought her a 1TB Firestick Recast during Black Friday so hopefully that makes her happier with it.
I was back up in their attic over thanksgiving running an ethernet cable to their master bedroom because the unit in there would just keep buffering.

They have had a bunch of issues related to the stick itself heating up and slowing down or just having poor reception in general so whatever option you choose, go with a box that has a cooling fan, a hardwired ethernet connection and a DVR feature.

In our house, we have gone through Chromecast, Skystream, Firestick and Roku devices over the years and now have a bunch of the AppleTV 4K's that are rock solid. They stream everything, including my Plex Server in one nice little box.
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2018
Likes
138
Location
Atlanta
#14
We are looking at cutting the cord, just to damn expensive now for Cable, Internet, Phone (dont need landline, just came with the last package).............. What everybody doing.

We are looking at keeping Spectrum Internet, (but upgrade speed), and possibly going with either Dish or Amazon Firestick for streaming and Hulu Live TV for local channels plus ESPN, Fox Sports, etc etc............. With Spectrum with can get Cell Phone service for wife and getting Izzy a phone also, that would be $15.00 each for phone and data............
Check out Hulu + Live TV for $44.99 a month and consider Disney+ for another $6.99 a month. Just remember that the cable/telco's will charge much higher for a single internet connection with no bundle but you can get a decent speed for ~$50-$60 a month depending on how you negotiate and what the competition is in your area. If you shop on amazon then its worth a prime membership for the shipping, discount and streaming but I personally find it the worse. Hulu and Netflix have way better original content than Amazon IMHO.

It's almost all the same cost these days. I still have AT&T U-verse + Internet which should be $160 a month but I pay $94 because I've been on the same "promotion" for 10 years now by calling retention and simpy saying, "can you keep me on current rates else xfer me so I can switch to Comcast". I get 250 channels and a 45 Mbps down/6 Mbps up internet connection. It's one big crazy game.
 

Big Kahuna

Administrator
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8,216
Location
Tuscaloosa, AL
#15
We need to stick with Spectrum for the internet, we already swapped my wifes cell service to them last week, $15.00 month cell&Data.............. Just have to figure out Cable TV part, drop the cable, Go Dish or the Firestick route.
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2018
Likes
138
Location
Atlanta
#16
We need to stick with Spectrum for the internet, we already swapped my wifes cell service to them last week, $15.00 month cell&Data.............. Just have to figure out Cable TV part, drop the cable, Go Dish or the Firestick route.
Depending on the package, Dish probably won't end up saving you much if anything but I can guarantee you that just Amazon Prime streaming service won't cut it either which leaves Hulu live/Netflix. You'll just have to get quotes. I personally can't stand satellites, not because aliens use them to control me or the Gov is watching me, but losing TV every time it rains sucks.
 

Big Kahuna

Administrator
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Tuscaloosa, AL
#17
Going to Dish now will save us a ton vs Cable......... But I am not real happy about satellite for the same reason. That why the Fire and Hulu Live is looking better
 
Joined
Oct 5, 2018
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149
Location
Cumming, Georgia
#18
I run a free program called popcorn time on the fire stick. Super easy to download just look up a YouTube tutorial. Has almost all major movies and tv shows for free. The hold up with the fire stick is the 2 gigs of free storage after the OS takes up the rest of the 8 gigs. Buy an otg cable for 5 bucks which allows you to plug in a flash drive for more storage. Don’t even have Netflix anymore as this is free and so much better.


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Vumad

Super Hero, with a cape!
Joined
Jun 21, 2007
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St. Pete, FL
#19
We define moronic differently.

Seniors are already at extremely high risks of exploitation and fraud. They often have low technological literacy skills.

Open wifi is cheap but is also a great way to share your data, since everything runs through that persons wifi. It might sound paranoid, as most open wifi wont be breached, but is it really worth the risk?

Did you know that people are attaching devices at public/business locations that when you plug your device in to charge it grabs all of your data? I'd personally rather charge my power pack there and teather to my phone to access my bank account, but you do as you please. You've at least heard of skimming at the pump? Why would anyone use a debit card at a fuel pump, right? What's the difference between the two, really?

Also, most data is stolen because it's easy. Hackers are not targeting YOU. Sure, you can save a few bucks on that Kodi, only at the cost of adding a back door to your house. Sure, mom is nice and safe paying those bills on the same wifi network as the kodi. Most hackers don't actually hack anything, they just target people who haven't run their security updates, have outdated smart TVs searching for updates, pirating content and so forth.

Studies have shown that for about $4 per person per month we could make every interaction we perform online completely private, but those cookies used for data mining are so tasty, and did I mention they are free?

I am not wreckless with my data, sticking with only known wifi, no pirated content, etc and I can still think of a number of ways my data could be easily breached.

Thinking it's not all that simple? I had a friend locked out of a windows PC. It took me 30 minutes to research online how to create a Umbutu usb boot drive, change the boot order of his laptop and run linux software on the device to not just grain access to his windows but EVERY password saved on the computer, and I have no background in software, just curiosity and an internet connection.

So don't just walk up to someone and say, hey, mind holding this device of mine? Don't look at anything inside, the password is password.

Sure, it's simple to not use that device to access your bank account. Except I hacked your yahoo account, and submitted a password recovery request to your bank, which sent you an email so I know which bank, and now I just made myself a new password. Maybe mom has 2-step authentication?
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2018
Likes
138
Location
Atlanta
#20
I run a free program called popcorn time on the fire stick. Super easy to download just look up a YouTube tutorial. Has almost all major movies and tv shows for free. The hold up with the fire stick is the 2 gigs of free storage after the OS takes up the rest of the 8 gigs. Buy an otg cable for 5 bucks which allows you to plug in a flash drive for more storage. Don’t even have Netflix anymore as this is free and so much better.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I hope you're using a good VPN because popcorn time is a major violation of copyright infringement and people are starting to get sued from a few years back. I'm not lecturing, just saying to be careful.
 
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