Netflix and iTunes & Ways to Watch TV Shows Without Cable

I think I made it pretty obvious that I’m hooked on television when I shamelessly shared how excited I was for last week and all the fall premieres I’ve been looking forward to watching. I can still remember a time when the only way to watch a show on TV was to actually be sitting in front of the TV at the exact time it started, with a snack you already prepared, and a plan for bathroom breaks timed perfectly with the commercials. There was no recording a show, well unless you count popping a tape in the VCR and setting up a program or hitting the record button, and there was certainly no pausing of “live” television. Boy, have we come a long way or what? These kids today just have no idea how lucky they are to live in a time of remote controls, DVRs, mobile devices, and cable television. I’ll admit that it sometimes feels like too much, especially when you consider the cost of all this fancy technology. I have to confess that there was even a time when I considered canceling our cable all together, but as soon as I uttered the words out loud Paul thought I was most definitely losing my mind. I’m pretty sure he’d hyperventilate without his remote control(s) and cable television.

Let’s face it, though, if you have an internet connection or are on a speedy and reliable network like U.S. Cellular’s 4G LTE one then you can pretty much watch anything you want at any time you want from just about any mobile device. Think about it. How many people do you know who have completely given up their landline phone and strictly use a mobile phone? As a matter of fact, the number of Americans who no longer subscribe to cable or satellite TV has increased 44 percent in the past four years to 7.6 million households, according to an Experian Marketing Services report. Nowadays it just makes more sense for a lot of people and even though my family isn’t one that has cut the cord with our cable company I do know of many people who have because opting to stream movies or television shows on their mobile phones or tablets is both more convenient and often times a lot more economical. Personally, I rely on my cable and DVR for most of my television viewing, but there have also been many times when I’ve snuggled up with my tablet to binge-watch a show or enjoy a movie on Netflix in the comfort of my bedroom. Okay, I’ll make a confession. I actually do this on almost a nightly basis when I head to bed a little early so I can fall asleep to my favorite soap opera. What?! It’s a guilty pleasure and I just can’t quit it.

I don’t know about you, but one of the most frustrating times for me is when I’m traveling. I often travel without my family, so it’s usually a bit tougher to fall asleep at night, so rather than deal with the hassle of trying to scroll through a cable guide in a city I’m not familiar with, I love to just pull out my snazzy Samsung Galaxy S5 or my tablet and find something to watch as I wind down for the evening. From options like iTunes to Google Play for single episodes to Hulu Plus or Netflix for monthly subscriptions there really is something for everyone, depending on your viewing habits and needs.

If you’re already a subscriber to either Netflix of Hulu Plus then you might be interested in purchasing a streaming media player such as a RokuApple TV, or Amazon Fire, which allow you access to thousands of channels, subscriptions services, convenient ways to rent or buy movies, view on demand shows and even play games. Just to add to your temptation and mobile collection, I need to (ahem) point out that U.S. Cellular has an amazing deal on the iPhone 5s right now that is just too good to pass up, so if you’re in the market for a new smartphone or are considering one for a family member then you’ll want to check out this deal right now!

P.S. If you are considering a new phone, especially one for a child in your family then I highly recommend checking out the parent/child agreement. You can download it, print it, and personalize it based on your personal situation and the best part is that it keeps everyone on the same page.

P.P.S. I realize I’ve probably overwhelmed you with all the options you have for viewing your favorite shows and movies, but if you’re like me then you don’t want to miss one episode of your favorite program, so really I’m just looking out for you. You’re welcome.

Disclosure: I’m a compensated member of U.S. Cellular’s Better Moments Blogger Brigade, but as always all opinions are my own.





  1. I saw yesterday where HBO Go is supposed to be available without a cable provider in 2015, I think that will really start to pave the way for other premium channels. My issues with my hubs at lease (not me) is the sports. If the NFL would come up with a per game non-cable price we’d be good to go the second we’re out of contract!

    • I heard about that too, Jen! I’ll be interested to see how it goes for HBO, but in all honesty we do not need another monthly subscription service in our home, so I’m kind of hoping it won’t appeal to us. 😉

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