The Costs of Cable and Satellite Television

Nida Shahid

The answer to this question is going to be subjective and a one-word answer can be misleading for many. However, in simple words, the answer to this question would be that it majorly depends on the provider you are subscribed to and what they offer to their customers. At times, expensive service(s) means that they are offering something exclusive to their users, premium services, or on-demand features and anything of that sort.

Cable and satellite TV are quite different from each other; cable TV is way more popular than the latter. Most of the population opts for the cable TV services, whereas, the usage of satellite TV is limited to the rural areas only - which of course makes satellite TV more expensive than cable TV. Now let's look deeper into cable TV - with a cable TV company like spectrum you can watch 125 plus local, sports, music and news channels for just $44.99 monthly via its spectrum select package, it depends on what you choose. You can even demand your favorite movies and TV shows as well. Furthermore, some companies such as AT&T and Comcast also have great features at low prices but it all comes down to what serviceable in your area and what package is offered there.

It depends on your affordability too; for instance, if someone can afford - they will be happily paying $250 per month subscribing to the most expensive package, the provider has to offer, and if someone cannot afford much they will be using packages that have low dues. Thus, it largely depends on the user's affordability.

It is fundamentally an equation between what companies offer at what price and what customers are willing to pay.

Moreover, if the market somehow had alternatives to cable and satellite TV that are less expensive than both, then in order to survive, cable and satellite TV had to change their prcing, packages or offerings to retain the customers.

When the market first had streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, Roku, and Apple TV cable providers like Xfinity and Spectrum launched their apps for their customers. However, the internet TV remained popular among urban populations, where there is fiber optic internet available, and in rural areas, they still have only one option, that is satellite TV. As cable companies are reluctant in investing in locations with low populations and turnovers.

The popular alternative option for cable services and cord-cutters these days are streaming services. Now let us see and briefly compare what streaming services have to offer, at what prices:

  • Netflix - $13.99
  • Hulu + Disney + ESPN - $12.99 ( it doesn't have live TV, and has ads)
  • Amazon Prime - almost the same as above (however, it includes some prime offerings)
  • CBS - $5.99 (has ads) - this package includes: CBSN, CBS Sports, and E! (Also, this lets its users  keep the news running in the background)
  • HBO - around $55.0

Now, if we compare all of them to cable TV - cable TV costs more than them but offers everything these services can only offer if subscribes to, collectively. Similarly, with these services come many free apps like YouTube, Ted TV, PBS, BBC (not completely free), NBC (again, not completely free), and CNN (not completely free), and many more - although you can compromise a bit on quality and focus on quantity.

One of the primary factors behind the intensifying popularity of streaming services today is the convenience of watching at your pace, wherever you are and as many times as you wish - as long as you have a stable internet connection – which almost everyone has due to 3G and 4G and access to Wi-Fi connections.

Conclusive Notes

We have discussed all the reasons why the costs of Cable and Satellite TV can be outrageous in the above mention article. At the end of the day, the prices fluctuate based on demand and supply too and cable services are not fully functional in all the states. However, satellite TV is functional at most of the places where the rest of the services may not be serviceable. Irrespective of all the trends and constantly changing consumer habits, some peoplechoose not to leave cable TV services for the sake of traditions and their love for sports.

Nida Shahid
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