• April 20, 2024

An Exploration of the Differences Between Satellite and Cable TV

For the average neophyte TV watcher, as long as the picture is clear and Lost comes on every Monday evening, everything’s peachy. Of course, for every ten “normal” people, there’s one techno-freak, obsessed with the biggest, brightest, and best the local electronics store and online retailers have to offer. For the folks that fall into the latter category, here’s a brief breakdown of the main differences between satellite and cable television.

Perhaps the greatest contrast between the two is in the way that they operate. Cable has always been supplied on a local level. In other words, in each region of the country, there is generally only one cable provider, leaving the consumer with little choice Ditch Cable of supplier. Satellite TV, on the other hand, operates on a national level, with a couple of major service providers that offer service that spans across the country.

There are advantages and disadvantages in both approaches. Cable TV usually carries local channels that you won’t find on satellite. That means that if you choose the latter, you’ll miss out on local news broadcasts and the like. If you are particularly attached to your local weatherman, that could be a deal breaker right there.

Looked at from the other direction, that means the television magically beamed down from space represents a national standard. If you and your 90 year-old grandmother love the same soap opera, you can be sure that you’ll both have access. Perhaps even more importantly for Grandma, the show will be on the same channel in both locations, so you can save her eyes the trouble of searching through the TV guide.

Many people would consider satellite TV’s main draw to be the diversity of programming it offers. More specifically, there are certain packages available on satellite that you just can’t find on cable. For example, if you’re a sports fan, you’ll have access to packages that allow you to watch every football or baseball game being broadcast across the country. A perfect example is the NFL Sunday Ticket; this package allows subscribers to catch any football game, regardless of geographic area. In contrast, cable subscribers are limited to watching the local game, with occasional updates provided by a national sportscasting team.

One great thing about cable is that it’s already installed in your home. You probably have lines running into each major living space, including bedrooms. Ditching cable for satellite requires the installation of a dish, which some people consider to be unsightly. While technology continues to improve, the dish generally needs to be placed in a location that allows for direct access to open sky.

Like any other major decision, there are pros and cons to both sides of the argument. The choice you should make really boils down to what your needs are. Some people just want ten channels to flip through occasionally when they’re bored! These TV watchers are probably better off not bothering with a laborious installation. If you’re a serious techy, however, you may want to consider exploring whether satellite is right for you and your family.

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