7 reasons you should consider cable TV instead of streaming

If you’re in with the modern thing, you probably know that streaming services are better than cable TV. Except, times are changing and you’ll be surprised to know that there are advantages of cable TV and traditional TV services that you may have missed out on if you’ve been on streaming for the past decade or so.

Here is our rundown of the top reasons to switch to cable TV over a streaming service.

More natural discoverability

The Sling TV guide as seen on a TV.
Phil Nickinson / Digital Trends

Have you been stuck in a pattern of seeing the same 8 to 12 recommended shows on the top of your streaming app? That’s bad discoverability in action. It gets worse when you end up watching one Korean show and then half your recommendations are Korean shows. Slowly, the algorithm picks up what you like and makes everything Korean. Your tastes get pruned to what you’ve watched before.

With traditional TV services, you’ll get more natural discoverability. When you tune into a station that you like, you’ll see whatever programming is on, right in the middle of it. That gives you a chance to see something as it is. What it doesn’t do is push programming onto you because an algorithm decided you’ll watch it. This aspect of cable TV is refreshing, worthwhile, and leads to a more well-rounded entertainment regimen.

Break your bingeing habit

Jeremy Allen White and Ayo Edebiri in The Bear.

One of the great things about streaming services is that you can watch the next episode of a show immediately after ending it. And then the next one. And the next. And the next… and so on. Suddenly, you’ve watched the entirety of The Bear in one sitting.

It can become a problem.

While cable TV and more traditional TV services don’t remove on demand titles — or even Netflix (keep reading for more about that) — the better availability of broadcast television programming will encourage you to take a break. You can watch tonight’s episode of your drama or fantasy epic and then something else will come on. There’s much less temptation to binge a series on the weekend when the next episode doesn’t automatically start after the credits roll.

Lock in your price

portrait of a cute guy with a bunch of money talking on the phone on a white studio background with copy space

If one thing has shown itself lately, it is that streaming services play by their own rules when it comes to pricing. Prices can get jacked up from one month to the next — with ads added on top, should the company like — and you have little recourse but to cancel your service.

Traditional services are paying attention to these inflationary pressures just as much as you are. And they’re responding with deals and offers that you can take to keep future price hikes from affecting you personally. For example, as of today, if you sign up for Dish you can lock your price in for a period of two years.

You still get on demand entertainment

A couple eating popcorn, watching TV.
Phillip Goldsberry / Unsplash

Cable TV has had demand entertainment for ages. If you’re a millennial, you probably remember it as a bit “scary” because your parents would warn you to never call the on demand number.

Nowadays, the on demand entertainment is done right on your TV or via the app that comes with the service. You’ll also find a ton of free on demand titles that come with your service. Even the cheapest Dish TV plan comes with over 28,000 on demand titles to view at your leisure. Plus, they have the latest title as PPV features, should you want that. Many plans even come with free monthly rentals of the latest and greatest.

So, while the old way of doing things and thinking made getting on demand entertainment a hassle and possibly very expensive, the new way is easy and free.

Netflix (still) optional

A hand points a remote at a TV display a Netflix logo screen.
Digital Trends

To add to the previous point, there is another myth that getting cable TV means the exclusion of Netflix or other streaming services. The idea is that cable and Netflix is an either-or situation.

Not only is this not true, services like Dish will permit you to add Netflix when you build your bundle.

At the end of the day, sometimes we have to accept that we like the best of both worlds. Modern traditional TV companies, like Dish, will give you the option to bundle your favorite services together with other TV programming for a superior experience.

It makes sports much easier

Man watching NFL on Dish.

Have you watched any great sports entertainment on Netflix lately? Unless you count that F1 documentary or Physical 100, we’re guessing your answer is a resounding ‘No’.

One of the big advantages of cable TV is that cable TV services give you access to live broadcasts. And that means real, live sports. For example, the standard Dish plan's channel lineup includes ESPN, ESPN 2, NFL Network, NBA TV, NHL Network, Fox Sports, and the Golf Channel among many others. And, you can purchase other add-ons for more niche options as well.

In short, cable TV makes watching live sports easy again and keeps you off sketchy restreams.

You can watch live TV anywhere

A man watching basketball on Dish anywhere.

Another misconception you may have about watching TV on a traditional broadcast service is that you can only use that service while you’re at home on your TV. That’s not really the case anymore. Most traditional TV providers know that we live watching from our devices on the go, with all programming, including live TV.

The result is a sort of hybrid service. At home you get cable or satellite broadcasts. Outside of the home, however, you can still use an app to get access to everything.

An excellent example of this type of service is Dish Anywhere — which comes free with Dish plans — that allows you to watch live broadcasts from wherever. When you connect your Hopper to the internet via Wi-Fi, you can connect live programming, downloaded DVR content and more. The app works on a surprising number of products, too, including iOS devices, Android devices, Fire TVs, and even Kindles.

This gives you the ability to carry those live sports and other advantages outlined above with you, on the go. Whether you’re at a doctor’s office or on vacation, so long as you have Wi-Fi available, you’re connected.

Give it a try

The dominance of streaming services at the moment has been largely great competition. But modern consumers are starting to look for more options — including Dish — to switch up their service and get more out of their entertainment budget. If you’re interested in trying Dish, getting a free installation, and gaining access to hundreds of channels and thousands of on demand titles, tap the button below to learn more and begin to build your package.