Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Turning the antenna

Some of us that are older will occasionally tell of the days of "turning the antenna." If you are older, you probably know what I'm talking about.

Back in the days before cable but after the dinosaurs, the only way to watch something on TV was with an antenna. And, depending on how far you lived from the various TV towers, you could find yourself in a situation where turning the antenna was required.

We lived in an area where we could pick up TV signals from both Savannah, Georgia and Jacksonville, Florida. And, if you look at a map, you'll see there's nowhere that exists that can point an antenna at both places and pick up the stations. They're too far apart to allow that.

That meant that a decision had to be made where to point the antenna. Since Savannah was closer, the antenna was pointed to Savannah.

Every now and then, we'd turn the antenna to Jacksonville. Sometimes Savannah would have local programming that pre-empted the network programming. Or the opposite, where Jacksonville had some local programming that we did want to see. Either way, that meant turning the antenna.

But there was another time we had to turn the antenna. After a large storm, the high winds would sometimes have caused the antenna to be pointing in a bad direction. Sometimes the wind would be so strong from a certain direction that enough tension was placed on the antenna where it would either cause the pole to turn, or bend the elements of the antenna. And if one of those were to happen, the preferred thing was for the pole to turn. As troublesome as it was, that is much preferred to a damaged antenna.

The thing is, if as part of your Streaming Life, you have a large outdoor antenna, you'll want to keep in mind that a strong wind can turn the pole, causing the antenna to point away from the TV towers slightly. Depending on how far you are from the towers, that can cause one to lose signal.

So, this bit of advice if you have a large outdoor antenna: if one of the stations suddenly is no longer being received, check the direction of your antenna. You may need to turn it. Just like us old folks had to do during the late Cretaceous.

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Comcast price hikes

Comcast TV customers will be hit with an increase in costs soon, according to reports. The TV giant is raising the overall cost of cable TV by nearly 4% nationwide. From the reports, it appears the increase won't be uniform, with some places getting hit harder than others.

Additionally, the price increases will impact other lines of business, including Xfinity Internet, although the increase for that isn't clear.

Cable TV appears to be the hardest hit, with the Broadcast Fees going up by various amounts, including over $7 in one market:

In a letter sent last week to the city of Taunton, Massachusetts, Comcast said the Broadcast TV fee would rise from $18.65 a month to $26 a month, effective December 20, 2022. (Comcast says the Broadcast TV fee is based on the cost of providing local stations in your market.)

In addition, Taunton subscribers will see anywhere from $2 a month to $5 a month increase in various video plans, including Choice TV Select and the Digital Preferred Tier plan. Set-top rental prices are also increasing there by $1.50 a month from $8.50 a month to $10 a month. Most Internet plans are also rising from $2 a month to $7 a month.

Despite the increase for Xfinity Internet customers, the price increases will be hardest on cable TV subscribers.

If you are a cable subscriber, this may be a time to look at cutting cable, or at least cutting back. In particular, it may be time to invest in a TV antenna. Don't rush into something like that, however, as in many places, not just any antenna will do. You'll want to do some research first. I'm just asking you to be prepared to look into that.

This isn't the only price increase for TV and Internet, for cable, satellite, or streaming, in the past two years. Comcast says their price increase, on average, isn't as bad as other price increases.

Comcast this evening confirmed to The TV Answer Man that the price increase is nationwide. Here is the statement from a Comcast spokesperson who said the average increase in all markets combined will be 3.8 percent.

"TV networks and other video programmers continue to raise their prices, with broadcast television and sports being the biggest drivers of increases in customers’ bills. We’re continuing to work hard to manage these costs for our customers while investing in our broadband network to provide the best, most reliable Internet service in the country and to give our customers more low-cost choices in video and connectivity so they can find a package that fits their lifestyle and budget. Our national average increase of 3.8% is about half of the most recent rate of inflation."

What he's saying is true, so these increases shouldn't really be a surprise. Although I'm not a cable TV subscriber, the price increase will impact me, as I'm an Xfinity Internet customer.

Once again, trying to watch TV, even as part of your Streaming Life, but especially as part of a traditional cable TV setup, will cost you more. Just like almost every aspect of your life for the past two years.

Monday, November 28, 2022

NBC local on Peacock, update

It was announced earlier this month that local NBC channels were beginning to appear on Peacock. At the time, my local NBC affiliate wasn't available. But that was weeks ago. What about now?

Well, I'm still not getting local NBC. And from what I'm able to tell, many others aren't as well.

It seems that the rollout isn't quite as staggered as I thought. I was expecting that some would get it along and along, as part of a steady rollout, with the last ones having it by end of the month.

Turns out I was overly optimistic about the whole thing. Peacock did roll out NBC affiliate access to some markets, but it was only a few markets that got it. They have been saving up until November 30 for the rest.

The good news is that's only a couple of days away. So, if you haven't received local NBC on Peacock yet, know that in a couple of days you will.

The bad news, for me anyway, is that I upped my subscription after the rollout started, and for the past three weeks, haven't received the channel.

You see, in order to get the local channel, you have to subscribe to Peacock Premium Plus. That's only $10/month, as compared to the $5/month plan for Peacock Premium. Or, for Xfinity Internet customers, $5/month, since those customers get Peacock Premium included with their service.

The Premium Plus plan gets me lots of ad-free on-demand content, but the whole ad-free thing doesn't matter to me. I'm grown, and I'm cheap. I can deal with ads to save some money. So the only reason I upgraded to Premium Plus was for the local NBC affiliate. I don't know if I'll keep it, but I do want to give it a serious look. That serious look won't start until later this week. I may have to resubscribe to the higher tier to give it a proper look, and I don't like that. But, like I said, I'm grown. I'll deal with it.

I'm looking forward to testing out local NBC as part of my Streaming Life. I don't know if I'll keep it, but I certainly am eager to give it a try.

Sunday, November 27, 2022

Subscribing one month at a time

I've mentioned before about my way of subscribing to streaming services. It's a very cost-effective way of watching the content I want to watch.

Now, first a few things that I do that you may not do. Or, more accurately, some things you do that I may not do.

First, I don't subscribe to a cable-like service. Examples of what I'm talking about are:

  • Frndly TV
  • Philo
  • Sling TV
  • Vidgo
  • YouTube TV
  • Hulu+Live TV
  • Fubo TV
  • DirecTV Stream

Those run from $7/month (Frndly TV, with lots of family friendly content), to $25/month (Philo, which has no news or sports channels), to $40/month (Sling TV, which is the cheapest with news and sports channels), up to DirecTV Stream (starts at $70/month).

Some people just have to have their cable channels. I don't. So, I'm not paying for those services.

Full disclosure: With me, there are actually two exceptions to this. During college football season, I'll subscribe to a service that has the channels I want. Generally, that's Sling TV for ESPN. This year, when Disney temporarily pulled ESPN from Sling TV, I switched to YouTube TV. But generally, Sling TV (now $40/month after Disney got a price increase for their channels) is my go-to service.

I do generally keep a subscription to Frndly TV. I was dropping it earlier this year as part of a subscription cleanup, but a bargain happened at that time and I did another year for a good price. It ends in the spring.

So, I don't (normally) have a subscription to one of those cable-like services. When I subscribe to something, it's one of the on-demand services. Here are the ones I normally use:

  • AMC+
  • Apple TV+
  • BritBox
  • Discovery+
  • Disney+
  • ESPN+
  • HBO Max
  • Hulu
  • Netflix
  • Paramount+
  • Showtime
  • Starz
I would add Peacock to the list, but it's free for me with Xfinity Internet. If I had to pay for it, I would through it into the mix. I could add Paramount+ to that as well, as I'm currently a Walmart+ member, and the $5/month Paramount+ is included. However, I will usually do the $10/month Paramount+ when I do that service.

I'll sometimes subscribe to the Disney Bundle, which has Hulu, Disney+, and ESPN+. And sometimes I'll do the Paramount Bundle, which is Paramount+ and Showtime.

I'll subscribe to just one service for a month -- sometimes one of the bundles, meaning two or three services -- and then cancel at the end of the period. The next month, I'll do a different service. Over the year, I cover all of the services at least once, and sometimes more, depending on things. I keep my budget at $15/month, so if a service is less, I can subscribe to more than one service.

So, for a lot less money than most people pay, I can watch all of those services during the year, catching up with a binge weekend or two if necessary.

If you want to watch content from many different services, there are ways to keep the costs down, and still include the content in your Streaming Life.

Saturday, November 26, 2022

HBO Max ad-supported

HBO Max has an ad-supported tier that's 1/3 off the price of the regular service. And, that discounted service is on sale right now. But is it worth it?

Short answer: yes.

Long answer: just keep reading.

I subscribe to several streaming services. In fact, I have to check my streaming device menu to see just what all services I have a subscription.

There's Hulu, Netflix, HBO Max, Frndly TV, Peacock, Paramount Plus, AMC Plus, Disney Plus, Discovery Plus, Showtime, Apple TV Plus, and Starz.

So, how much do I pay per month for all this? Around $10-$15 each month.

How? Simple. I only subscribe to one at a time. I binge watch all the stuff I want to watch during that month, then the next month I'll subscribe to a different service.

Some of the services are only $5 or so, and I may subscribe to two of those during a month. My goal is to keep it under $15/month. So, most of the time, it's one of those services, but sometimes it's two.

Over a year, I get to watch a lot of stuff from all those services, and I pay a lot less than most people who watch those services.

This month, I'm doing HBO Max. I actually did Netflix this month. Or, more properly, Netflix with ads is the service I chose to do in November. And while we are still in November, I wanted to watch a movie that was on HBO Max, so I actually started it up a few days early. My December service is HBO Max.

Actually, it's HBO Max Ad-supported. Regular HBO Max is $15/month, while the ad-supported version is $10/month. And, right now, they're running a special where it's $2/month for three months. And that price is good for returning customers, not just new customers. I don't know if I'll keep it all three months, but at this price, I can.

So how is it? It's fine. I watched two movies yesterday. One was a classic film, and the other was a new HBO Max exclusive.

I launched Casablanca, which is a great film, and watched it after lunch, while doing laundry. It played without issue. Last night, I watched A Christmas Story Christmas, which I had been wanting to watch. It played fine without issue.

Actually, I didn't get any ads for either movie. Probably a server glitch, but that tells me that if there's an ad server problem, rather than crash your app, the service simply skips the ad and keeps playing the content. So, I got a test I didn't expect, and it passed the test with flying colors.

So, what am I missing by using the ad-supported version of HBO Max? No same day movies -- that is, no online viewing of movies the day it premieres in theaters -- and no downloads of movies.

I don't really care about either one of those, and ads don't bother me, so for me, the $10/month plan is just fine. And the current deal of $2/month for three months is great. If you want HBO Max content, the current special is a great way to add it to your Streaming Life.

Friday, November 25, 2022

Watching college football games this weekend: Week 13

College football season in now in Week 13, the last full regular season week. All regular season games, excepting possible make-ups of postponed games, and the Army-Navy games, will conclude this week. Three games have already been played: two from the MAC on Tuesday, and one SEC game yesterday. All four unbeaten teams are also playing, including the Big Ten East Division being decided between Ohio State and Michigan. Of the other two unbeatens, both are favored with top ranked Georgia playing host to in-state rival Georgia Tech, while Texas Christian hosts Iowa State.

If you want to watch all of the games this season, you need access to most of the networks, which can get expensive. Of course, you might not want to be able to watch all the games.

This weekend, only one game will not be on these networks. Here are the networks carrying games:

  • ABC
  • ACC Network
  • Big 12 (No games this week)
  • Big Ten
  • CBS
  • CBS Sports Network
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN 3
  • ESPN U
  • SEC Network
  • ESPN+
  • Fox
  • Fox Sports 1
  • Longhorn Network (No games this week)
  • NBC (No games this week)
  • NFL Network (No games this week)
  • Pac 12 Network
  • Peacock (No games this week)
  • Stadium
  • FloSports
  • Team1Sports

Here is how to watch these networks listed. Note the prices reflect the announced price increases for Sling TV:

ABC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ACC Network

  • Sling Orange, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

Big Ten Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

CBS

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Paramount+ Premium, $10/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

CBS Sports Network

  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Ultimate, $105/month.

ESPN

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN2

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN U

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

ESPN3

ESPN3 is usually included with a service that carries standard ESPN/ESPN2.

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN+

ESPN+ is a standalone sports programming service. It is not the same thing as regular ESPN that you get with cable or one of the live streaming services. Some content from ESPN, ESPN2, or other ESPN networks may be available on ESPN+, but often, it's content that is only available on ESPN+.

  • ESPN+, $7/month.
  • Disney Bundle, $14/month.

Fox

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Fox Sports 1

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Longhorn Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.

NBC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

NFL Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.

Pac 12 Network

  • Sling Blue, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • Fubo TV Pro, with Fubo Extra, $78/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

Peacock TV

Peacock is a standalone streaming service that carries NBCUniversal programming, including much sports from NBC as well as exclusive sports programming. Peacock Premium is $5/month, but is included with Xfinity Internet plans.

SEC Network

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.
  • Fubo TV Ultimate, $100/month.

Stadium, Mountain West

  • Website, free.
  • Stadium app, free.
  • Plex, free.
  • Roku Channel, free.
  • Sling Free, free.
  • STIRR, free.
  • Tubi, free.
  • Xumo, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Stadium app, free.

FloSports

  • FloSports app, $13/month.

Team1Sports

  • Team1Sports app, free

This list of networks covers all the games airing today. It also covers games next week through Friday, as the early games next week are all on one of these networks.

NOTE: Several networks are not needed this weekend.

To watch all the games, having an antenna won't really matter, as in order to get all the networks carrying games, the services also carry the OTA stations. So, how much to watch them all?

The services necessary will cost $98. That's $78 for Fubo TV Pro + Fubo Extra, along with $7 for ESPN+, and $13 for FloSports.

If you want college football in your Streaming Life, you have options, though it can get expensive depending just how many games you want to watch.

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Thanksgiving 2022

Thanksgiving Proclamation

Issued by President George Washington, at the request of Congress, on October 3, 1789
By the President of the United States of America, a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and—Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me “to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:”

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favor, able interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations, and beseech Him to pardon our national and other trangressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally, to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

Go. Washington

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

How to watch Doctor Who

Today is Doctor Who day. Well, it is for those that care about that sort of thing.

On November 23, 1963, at 5:46 PM, BBC aired the first episode ever of Doctor Who. Nobody figured that 59 years later, the TV show would still be relevant.

Now, to be sure, the show has not been on for 59 years. In 1989, the 26th season of the show ended. From a London policeman walking in the fog outside 76 Totter's Lane on November 23, 1963, to The Doctor and Ace walking in the sunshine across a field, 26 years and 13 days had passed.

The show was canceled, and would remain so for years.

A 1996 TV movie made by Universal and BBC failed to be picked up as a series. On March 26, 2005, BBC aired the first episode of the revived series. Initially, it was considered to be a reboot of the series, but it developed into a continuation instead, with all previous episodes as part of the same canon.

The show was a worldwide hit, and reached its peak popularity during David Tennant's time as the 10th Doctor, and began to taper off during Matt Smith's 11th Doctor and Peter Capaldi's 12th Doctor, bottoming out during Jodie Whitaker's 13th Doctor.

There are fans that only like the original classic Doctor Who. There are fans that only like the newer series. There are fans that like both.

So, how does one watch Doctor Who? Well, that depends on which version you want.

Classic Doctor Who episodes -- all that exist, which is another story in itself -- are available on Brit Box. Additionally, some free ad-support television (FAST) services carry streams of Doctor Who. This includes Pluto TV, Xumo, Plex, and Roku Channel.

The revived series is available on HBO Max. Next year, new episodes will debut on Disney+, but for now, HBO Max is your home for NuWho.

Whichever show you like -- classic, new, or both -- you have options when it comes to inviting the Doctor and his TARDIS crew into your Streaming Life.

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Free holiday content

Being a streamer and having streaming devices connected to the TV opens up a lot of possibilities for streaming holiday content.

Let me drop this in right now: I'm not one that's afraid to say "Christmas." I say holidays because the content I'm talking about is more than just Christmas, although the bulk of it is for Christmas.

Anyway, there are a lot of ways to stream content for Christmas, Thanksgiving, and other holidays using your streaming devices. And I'm talking about free content. That's right, won't cost you a cent.

Most of this is free ad-supported television (FAST) content. Now, if commercials are a problem for you, this isn't the article for you. But, if you don't mind watching some commercials, and appreciate free content as a result, then you have lots of options for watching FAST holiday movies and TV.

Pluto TV

The granddaddy of FAST apps has a Season's Greetings section. It has nine linear (live streaming) channels. If you look around the live channel guide, you'll see Christmas channels in other sections, but they are duplicates of what's in the Season's Greetings section. Of course, some other channels will occasionally have Christmas or other holiday content. These nine are all Christmas content, including movies, fireplace, music videos, and one Spanish language channel.

Xumo

The Comcast backed FAST service has a Holiday Hub that has 17 live streaming channels. This includes five music channels and a music video channel, but no fireplace channels.

Crackle

This long-time favorite now has a more family friendly approach since it was acquired by Chicken Soup for the Soul. Crackle doesn't have a live-streaming hub of holiday content, but does have a Holiday section of 160 on-demand movies. They are mostly Christmas themed, but there are other holidays represented, including Thanksgiving. Additionally, there are four selections in the TV section, mostly Kirstie's Handmade episodes.

Tubi

The Fox-owned Tubi has a Holiday Hits category with 200 on-demand selections. There is no linear content, but that is a fair number of on-demand movies and TV. Tubi has some fireplace and Christmas music based selections that run about an hour each.

Plex

This service has both live streaming and on-demand sections. However, it's doesn't contain the focus of other services. There is no Holiday or similar category in the Movies & Shows section. However, there are over 250 on-demand holiday themed movies. But beware: there are all sorts of sub-genre and mixed genre holiday movies, including horror films. Not everything is suitable for family viewing.

Unfortunately, in the Live TV section, there is no category for holiday content.

Others?

This is not intended to be an all-encompassing list of apps and services offering holiday content, but simple to share information about some of the ways you can watch it.

Why haven't I mentioned Roku Channel? Because, at least as of today, Roku Channel doesn't have a holiday hub of any type. Same with Sling TV free. On these services, you may find some content here and there mixed in with other programming, but there isn't a single place to go for holiday content within these apps. Perhaps they will after Thanksgiving. If they do, I'll provide an update.

Despite the disappointment that some of the services and apps don't have a section for holiday content, there are several free options for holiday content, mostly Christmas content. If that's something you want in your Streaming Life, you'll be happy.

Monday, November 21, 2022

Streaming the World Cup

Outside the USA, several sports fans care about the World Cup. That's the international soccer championship.

There are a number of people that watch it in the USA as well, although its popularity is nowhere that of outside the USA. Kind of like the metric system.

Anyway, for those interested, it's certainly possible to stream World Cup coverage in the USA. Live coverage will be on Fox, Fox Sports 1, and Peacock.

Fox

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Fox Sports 1

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Peacock TV

Peacock is a standalone streaming service that carries NBCUniversal programming, including much sports from NBC as well as exclusive sports programming. Peacock Premium is $5/month, but is included with Xfinity Internet plans.

Additionally, Tubi will have replays of some games available.

If you are a soccer fan that wants the World Cup as part of your Streaming Life, you have options.

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Plex on Raspberry Pi, revisited

Recently, I was visiting a family member that had Plex running on a Raspberry Pi device. I had set that up in March and it had been running ever since.

So, everything is good, right? Well, not exactly.

When I set it up, I followed instructions of others who had set up Plex on Raspberry Pi. And they used the full Raspberry Pi graphical user interface (GUI). You know, with the windows and mouse and such.

If you're setting up a personal computer, that's fine. That works well. But, it does take up resources, and that can be a problem. Not a huge problem, but everything the device has to manage and operate that is not needed is a waste of resources, and more importantly, something that can go wrong and cause a device to hang up.

You see, Plex should run just fine without the GUI. It has a small Web server running, and if I want to use a GUI, it's easy enough to simply launch a Web browser. And that's how it's managed. We don't need to physically go into the room where the device is located (where the Internet service comes in; not the main room of the house) to get on it. Launching a browser can be done from anywhere on the network.

However, there are other tasks that need to happen from time to time, particularly updates to the operating system.

Now, with it running a full installation of Ubuntu Linux, there are many applications that are installed with a setup like that. And those applications are not needed to run Linux, but they do need to be updated from time to time, for security reasons. And that's the issue with a full GUI installation for a dedicated purpose device.

So, here's what I'm thinking I'll do. I will set up another device running a headless install of Linux. With just a command line setup, the updates will be simple enough. Running SSH will allow connection from another room. And, should things go horribly wrong, it would be easy enough to connect a monitor, keyboard, and mouse to access. But most of the time, accessing the command line is easy, and updates will be two commands:

sudo apt update

sudo apt upgrade -y

That's easy, right? And you don't even have to get out of your chair.

But if it's working, why would I want to go through all this trouble. Well, it's not exactly working. There are some issues with updates. Oh, to be sure, you can do updates, but the Ubuntu installation is wonky, and command line updates don't always work. So, it needs some work, and I'm thinking the thing to do is to just put in a new, simpler installation.

I like things to just work in my Streaming Life, and right now, maintaining Plex isn't working as it should. And I will fix it. "It tasks me." And if you know that quote, you know I may fail gloriously if I allow it to blind me as the speaker of those words was blinded, obsessed. But when you get down to it, I just want it to work.

Saturday, November 19, 2022

Watching college football games this weekend: Week 12

College football season in now in Week 12. All four unbeaten teams are also playing, and all are favored to win. Three are expected to be blowouts -- Georgia, Ohio State, and Michigan are big favorites -- but TCU is a close favorite.

If you want to watch all of the games this season, you need access to most of the networks, which can get expensive. Of course, you might not want to be able to watch all the games.

This weekend, only one game will not be on these networks. Here are the networks carrying games:

  • ABC
  • ACC Network
  • Big 12
  • Big Ten
  • CBS
  • CBS Sports Network
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN 3
  • ESPN U
  • SEC Network
  • ESPN+
  • Fox
  • Fox Sports 1
  • Longhorn Network (No games this week)
  • NBC
  • NFL Network
  • Pac 12 Network
  • Peacock
  • Stadium
  • FloSports
  • Team1Sports

Here is how to watch these networks listed. Note the prices reflect the announced price increases for Sling TV:

ABC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ACC Network

  • Sling Orange, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

Big Ten Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

CBS

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Paramount+ Premium, $10/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

CBS Sports Network

  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Ultimate, $105/month.

ESPN

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN2

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN U

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

ESPN3

ESPN3 is usually included with a service that carries standard ESPN/ESPN2.

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN+

ESPN+ is a standalone sports programming service. It is not the same thing as regular ESPN that you get with cable or one of the live streaming services. Some content from ESPN, ESPN2, or other ESPN networks may be available on ESPN+, but often, it's content that is only available on ESPN+.

  • ESPN+, $7/month.
  • Disney Bundle, $14/month.

Fox

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Fox Sports 1

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Longhorn Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.

NBC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

NFL Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.

Pac 12 Network

  • Sling Blue, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • Fubo TV Pro, with Fubo Extra, $78/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

Peacock TV

Peacock is a standalone streaming service that carries NBCUniversal programming, including much sports from NBC as well as exclusive sports programming. Peacock Premium is $5/month, but is included with Xfinity Internet plans.

SEC Network

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.
  • Fubo TV Ultimate, $100/month.

Stadium, Mountain West

  • Website, free.
  • Stadium app, free.
  • Plex, free.
  • Roku Channel, free.
  • Sling Free, free.
  • STIRR, free.
  • Tubi, free.
  • Xumo, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Stadium app, free.

FloSports

  • FloSports app, $13/month.

Team1Sports

  • Team1Sports app, free

This list of networks covers all the games airing today. It also covers games next week through Friday, as the early games next week are all on one of these networks.

NOTE: Longhorn Network is not needed this weekend.

To watch all the games, having an antenna won't really matter, as in order to get all the networks carrying games, the services also carry the OTA stations. So, how much to watch them all?

The services necessary will cost $98. That's $78 for Fubo TV Pro + Fubo Extra, along with $7 for ESPN+, and $13 for FloSports.

If you want college football in your Streaming Life, you have options, though it can get expensive depending just how many games you want to watch.

Friday, November 18, 2022

Antenna: avoid bad antennae when making your choice

I mentioned recently (again) about Tyler the Antenna Man. He's pretty good about keeping up with things.

If you are thinking about getting an antenna, spend some time looking at his YouTube videos. You can learn a lot from him ahead of making your decision.

He had a video earlier this week about a really popular, but really bad, TV antenna. Give it a watch, if you or someone you know is looking at getting a TV antenna.

[Direct link]

There are many antennae like this one in many stores, both brick and mortar and online. Be careful with your antenna choice. You want a happy Streaming Life. An antenna like this one can ruin it.

Thursday, November 17, 2022

Choosing an antenna the easy way: let someone do it for you

Although we had an antenna in my youth, by the time I was out and on my on, cable was big, and had all the channels I wanted, and more. When I got my own place, I didn't get an antenna because I got cable. That gave me all the local channels. My parents eventually got cable, and finally took down their antenna. I don't know why they didn't just leave it, but this is what they did.

When I dropped cable back in 2011, I lost access to my local stations. I didn't often watch local channels, so it wasn't a big deal. There were some network shows I watched, but I was able to watch them on Hulu in 2011. So, I went without an antenna for a while. I put up an antenna and was able to watch local channels that way.

Years later, my mother dropped cable, and I put up an antenna at her house. This time, though, it was a little different. She lived over 40 miles from the TV towers, and you can't just get any TV antenna to work. So, I had to do a little research.

A couple of years back, I ran across Tyler the Antenna Man's YouTube channel. I watched one of his videos and, while I don't claim to be an expert, much less "The Antenna Man," I do know a little bit about what I'm doing. I did my research. But, I figured I'd watch more of his videos and see just what he was all about.

Turns out, I was impressed with his knowledge. His videos are for the general public. He doesn't exactly dumb it down for people who don't understand or care about all the things that go into picking up TV signals, but he does explain things in a way that's good for most people.

I had picked out an antenna for my mother's place, but hadn't purchased it yet. Part of the problem was finding somebody to put it up. It's not just the physical installation of the antenna an pole, but the electrical lines that ran there. Those are dangerous, and I'm not looking to play reckless games with an antenna. I needed someone to install.

Tyler's Website offers a consultation service (I think I paid around $40 back in 2020; it is still that price today) for both an antenna, but also installer options. He found someone that would install it for me.

Tyler's antenna recommendation was a good one, and he did find someone to install it, so I was happy with the decision to use his service.

The installer had antennae that would do the job, and the one he brought was one of the ones Tyler had recommended. I felt good about it all, and the setup still works. I expect many long years of service from it.

Am I recommending Tyler the Antenna Man. Yes, I suppose I am. But I'm also saying that if you do the research properly, you'll wind up with the same conclusion.

My research showed that I didn't need his services, but I'm happy enough with his services that I bought that I can feel good about recommending him. If nothing else, it ensures you aren't overlooking something, and gives you peace of mind. If that's worth $40, then it's a bargain.

An antenna is a great complement to your online viewing, and should be considered as part of your Streaming Life. I've been happy with my choice to put up an antenna.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

How to stream Yellowstone Season 5

I've never watched Yellowstone. Apparently, I'm missing out on the next big thing. It seems to be a popular show.

Some friends who recently cut cable were asking me how to watch Yellowstone. As I don't watch it, I didn't know what to tell them. But, I told them I would find out.

You see, I didn't want them to jump to the conclusion that you couldn't watch it. Perhaps they couldn't, but I didn't know. I suspected they could.

First thing I had to do was find out just what it was. I mean, yeah, I had heard of it, but it was nothing more than a small blip on my RADAR as nothing more than something that existed. I knew nothing else about it.

Until now.

My research showed that it was a huge hit show for Paramount Network. Okay, that's a TV channel you can find on cable, satellite, and streaming services. But Paramount has its own streaming service, right? Paramount? Well, yes they do, but the show isn't on Paramount Plus.

Turns out that Paramount (the company) has signed an agreement with NBCUniversal some time back for the latter company to carry the show on its service, Peacock TV.

At the time, there was no Paramount Plus. There was CBS All Access, but it wasn't assured of getting content from it's parent, Paramount. And sure enough, Paramount dealt the show away to the new Peacock TV service.

Well, wouldn't you know it, but Yellowstone suddenly took off. Around that time, Paramount decided to rebrand CBS All Access as Paramount Plus and focus on streaming. And the big hit show, Yellowstone, wasn't available.

The earth cooled and time passed.

Now, it's time for Season Five, and Peacock TV has it, right? Nope. That service only has the first four seasons. Right now, the only way to watch Season Five is with Paramount Network. So how do you get that?

Paramount Network

  • Philo, $25/month.
  • Sling Orange, with Comedy Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Blue, with Comedy Extra, $46/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Comedy Extra, $61/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Right now, this is it. The cheapest, of course, is Philo. And Philo is a great service, particularly if you don't care about watching talking news heads or sports.

The whole situation is a bit confusing, but you can get Yellowstone in your Streaming Life.

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Roku's Sports Hub

Roku has launched a Sports hub on its devices. The goal is to help users find live and upcoming events. And that is something that is needed. But how well did Roku do? Not as well as I had hoped.

If you're a streamer, you may know that there are ways to watch a lot of content. Only, there is no one way to watch everything. Of course, that's true of cable and satellite as well.

Some games are available over the air, and most cable systems will carry those, but satellite can be another matter. And, depending on where you live, and how easy it is to put up an antenna, you may or may not be able to watch live local channels for free. This is true of streaming as well.

A lot of various networks may be necessary to watch your favorite team. In fact, it's likely that you'll need to be able to watch multiple networks to catch all your team's games. And that can lead to a lot of frustration.

I'm using football as an example because it's football season, but this is generally true for any sport. One thing you can do is check each week and see who's carry your team. And that's what a lot of people have to do. My weekly posts about how to watch the college games the current weekend are some of my most read posts. But wouldn't it be nice if there was another way, an easier way, to just sit down and find your game?

That's the idea of the new Roku Sports hub. They call it the Sports Experience. And it does okay, but it's not perfect. They carry information about a lot of games.

Currently, our new sports experience includes pro and college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, baseball, and soccer from DIRECTV, FOX Sports, FuboTV, Paramount+, Peacock, Prime Video, Sling, The Roku Channel, TNT, TBS, and truTV, as well as games coming over the air through an antenna connected to Roku TV models, with more sports and viewing options expected in the coming months.

Checking this weekend's Top 25 games, I see it falls short. And yes, a new CFP Top 25 will come out tonight, but the current listing is close enough to show my concerns.

Using the Roku Sports Experience, I don't see the Georgia-Kentucky game listed. Georgia is the number one team, but the game isn't listed. Yes, it's on CBS, but livw local CBS is included with Paramount+ Premium service.

Number two Ohio State's game with Maryland isn't listed either. That game is carried on ABC, but isn't on the Roku hub.

Number three Michigan's game with Illinois is there, and it's on ABC ahead of the Ohio State game. So, one game on a certain network shows, but another game involving a higher ranked team, carried on the same network, is not.

Number four Texas Christian vs Baylor (on Fox)? Nope.

Number five Tennessee vs South Carolina? Nope.

I won't go on, because my point is made. The project needs work. However, it is better than not having it. Just realize that it's not perfect. Still, it's an important thing for a Roku user's Steaming Life.

Monday, November 14, 2022

Walmart dropping Onn streaming devices?

I've seen a few news articles over the last few days speculating that Walmart is discontinuing its Onn streaming devices.

To me, that's not a big loss, as it's one of the worst streaming device lines. The Onn Streaming Stick is simply junk. I bought one in the summer of 2021 and tested it out. And it failed the test.

It was slow, frustratingly so. And, it would hang up. I won't go on and on about the Onn Streaming Stick, but if you do want to see all the details of my thoughts on it, look at my post about it from June 2021.

There were/are two Onn devices though. The other one was much better. Even being better, it was not one I would recommend. I wrote about it in July 2021 if you want to read about that.

In the last week, there have been reports about the devices not being available for shipping, and not being in stock at several stores. One higher profile article was on 9to5Google:

 In the past few days Walmart has entirely ceased online sales of the Onn 4K and Onn HD, its two Android TV-powered streaming devices. Some users on Reddit found that they could still add the devices to their carts as of early this morning, but we’re currently seeing the device as not available online at all.

Local stock on these streamers also appears to be limited at best. I couldn’t find a single device in stock in the eight stores near me or any other zip codes I tried.

Some readers have reported that the devices are in stock at their stores. No one has reported it available for shipping. It's not in my local Walmart, for instance, and as reported, not available for shipping.

There has been no announcement from Walmart about any discontinuation of the devices, but I would not be surprised about it. In fact, if you recall, before these Walmart shortages being reported, I had speculated about Walmart dropping the line because of the deal Walmart has with Comcast and Charter to carry the new Xumo brand devices.

None of this means I was right. But you know what I think: I was right. What I don't understand, though, is why none of the other places put this together. I'm the only one that seems to have put these things together.

Of course, all this could be a coincidence and the Onn devices may start showing up again. Or newer versions may show up. Time will tell.

In the meantime, if you are wanting a good cheap streaming device for your Streaming Life, I still say to avoid the Onn devices. They're junk. Get a Roku or Fire TV device. Look for the Black Friday -- or Before Black Friday -- sales going on. You can do much better than an Onn streaming device.

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Network issues

Everybody suffers from network issues from time to time. I'm actually a bit of a computer expert. I don't know everything about everything. Heck, I don't know everything about anything. But I know a lot about a lot when it comes to computers. That includes networks.

Now, to be sure, there are plenty of people, including people I know well, that know a lot more about networks than I do. But, I'm still pretty good. At the very least, I can set up my own network and troubleshoot issues accurately.

Just because I'm the family's "computer guy" doesn't mean things don't go wrong. For example, I spent most of the week out of town. I had a business trip (two actually) and squeezed some out of town family time in the middle of it all. And, when I got back home after being away for a few days, I had a problem with my network.

Now, picture this. I pull up in the carport and grab my phone to turn on the lights. Many of my lights are on the network, and I can use an app to turn them on or off. But, in the carport, my phone is still on cellular.

That's odd, because I should be on my network. So I'm wondering what's going on. Then, I get an idea. I have a VPN running, and I can connect to it from cellular. So, I launch the VPN app and it connects. That tells me the network is actually running -- if the network was down, I couldn't connect to the VPN -- but the wireless isn't working.

I launch my Home Automation app. Some of the lights are available. So, I turn those on. They are on the far end of the house, near to where the main network connections are.

That tells me that some of the WiFi is working, and some isn't. I've either a problem with the second wireless access point, or the connectivity between the main wireless router and the secondary one.

All this, and I've not even exited my car. By this time, I'm tired of being outside and unload the car and go inside.

Just because someone is pretty good and knowledgeable about computers and networks, that doesn't mean they won't have problems. Problems don't care how much you know. But how much you know can determine how quickly and inexpensively you'll get the issue fixed.

Being somewhat computer savvy does make some things about my Streaming Life easier. I'm hoping that one day, all these issues would go away. But, then what would I do for fun?

Saturday, November 12, 2022

Watching college football games this weekend: Week 11

College football season in now in Week 11. All four unbeaten teams are also playing, but not all are favored to win. Three are expected to be blowouts -- Georgia, Ohio State, and Michigan are big favorites -- but TCU is an underdog.

If you want to watch all of the games this season, you need access to most of the networks, which can get expensive. Of course, you might not want to be able to watch all the games.

This weekend, only one game will not be on these networks. Here are the networks carrying games:

  • ABC
  • ACC Network
  • Big 12
  • Big Ten
  • CBS
  • CBS Sports Network
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN 3
  • ESPN U
  • SEC Network
  • ESPN+
  • Fox
  • Fox Sports 1
  • Longhorn Network (No games this week)
  • NBC (No games this week)
  • NFL Network
  • Pac 12 Network
  • Peacock (No games this week)
  • Stadium
  • FloSports
  • Team1Sports

Here is how to watch these networks listed. Note the prices reflect the announced price increases for Sling TV:

ABC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ACC Network

  • Sling Orange, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

Big Ten Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

CBS

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Paramount+ Premium, $10/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

CBS Sports Network

  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Ultimate, $105/month.

ESPN

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN2

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN U

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

ESPN3

ESPN3 is usually included with a service that carries standard ESPN/ESPN2.

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN+

ESPN+ is a standalone sports programming service. It is not the same thing as regular ESPN that you get with cable or one of the live streaming services. Some content from ESPN, ESPN2, or other ESPN networks may be available on ESPN+, but often, it's content that is only available on ESPN+.

  • ESPN+, $7/month.
  • Disney Bundle, $14/month.

Fox

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Fox Sports 1

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Longhorn Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.

NBC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

NFL Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.

Pac 12 Network

  • Sling Blue, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • Fubo TV Pro, with Fubo Extra, $78/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

Peacock TV

Peacock is a standalone streaming service that carries NBCUniversal programming, including much sports from NBC as well as exclusive sports programming. Peacock Premium is $5/month, but is included with Xfinity Internet plans.

SEC Network

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.
  • Fubo TV Ultimate, $100/month.

Stadium, Mountain West

  • Website, free.
  • Stadium app, free.
  • Plex, free.
  • Roku Channel, free.
  • Sling Free, free.
  • STIRR, free.
  • Tubi, free.
  • Xumo, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Stadium app, free.

FloSports

  • FloSports app, $13/month.

Team1Sports

  • Team1Sports app, free

This list of networks covers all the games airing today. It also covers games next week through Friday, as the early games next week are all on one of these networks.

NOTE: Longhorn Network, NBC, and Peacock TV are not needed this weekend.

To watch all the games, having an antenna won't really matter, as in order to get all the networks carrying games, the services also carry the OTA stations. So, how much to watch them all?

The services necessary will cost $98. That's $78 for Fubo TV Pro + Fubo Extra, along with $7 for ESPN+, and $13 for FloSports.

If you want college football in your Streaming Life, you have options, though it can get expensive depending just how many games you want to watch.

Friday, November 11, 2022

Veterans Day 2022

Today is Veterans Day. We have observed it since the end of the first World War, and it became a U.S. holiday in 1954. The president issued a proclamation that year.

Proclamation 3071—Veteran's Day, 1954

October 08, 1954

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Whereas it has long been our custom to commemorate November 11, the anniversary of the ending of World War I, by paying tribute to the heroes of that tragic struggle and by rededicating ourselves to the cause of peace; and

Whereas in the intervening years the United States has been involved in two other great military conflicts, which have added millions of veterans living and dead to the honor rolls of this Nation; and

Whereas the Congress passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926 (44 Stat. 1982), calling for the observance of November 11 with appropriate ceremonies, and later provided in an act approved May 13, 1938 (52 Stat. 351), that the eleventh of November should be a legal holiday and should be known as Armistice Day; and

Whereas, in order to expand the significance of that commemoration and in order that a grateful Nation might pay appropriate homage to the veterans of all its wars who have contributed so much to the preservation of this Nation, the Congress, by an act approved June 1, 1954 (68 Stat. 168), changed the name of the holiday to Veterans Day:

Now, Therefore, I, Dwight D. Eisenhower, President of the United States of America, do hereby call upon all of our citizens to observe Thursday, November 11, 1954, as Veterans Day. On that day let us solemnly remember the sacrifices of all those who fought so valiantly, on the seas, in the air, and on foreign shores, to preserve our heritage of freedom, and let us reconsecrate ourselves to the task of promoting an enduring peace so that their efforts shall not have been in vain. I also direct the appropriate officials of the Government to arrange for the display of the flag of the United States on all public buildings on Veterans Day.

In order to insure proper and widespread observance of this anniversary, all veterans, all veterans' organizations, and the entire citizenry will wish to join hands in the common purpose. Toward this end, I am designating the Administrator of Veterans' Affairs as Chairman of a Veterans Day National Committee, which shall include such other persons as the Chairman may select, and which will coordinate at the national level necessary planning for the observance. I am also requesting the heads of all departments and agencies of the Executive branch of the Government to assist the National Committee in every way possible.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States of America to be affixed.

DONE at the City of Washington this eighth day of October in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and fifty-four, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred and seventy-ninth.

DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER

By the President:

JOHN FOSTER DULLES,

Secretary of State

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Local NBC coming to Peacock TV ... for a price

Peacock TV has been a good service for the cost. The NBCUniversal catalog is really big, and the free tier offers 1/2 to 2/3 of the catalog (depending on how you count it). The Premium service, which contains the entire catalog, plus lots of live streaming offerings, particularly sports programming, is a good deal at $5/month (free for Xfinity Internet customers).

Peacock even has an ad-free tier, which is another $5/month, totally $10/month for everything and no ads for on-demand content (actually, there are ads on a very limited number of items; of course, all live streams have ads).

The pricing of the service is similar to that of Paramount+ (no free tier for Paramount, by the way). But Paramount+ has one advantage. Well, had, since that's won't matter soon. Paramount+ $10/month tier includes local CBS affiliate streams.

Peacock TV will soon be adding local NBC affiliate streams to the service. According to reports, it's already rolling out in some areas:

Once the new feature is available in your market — some are going live as early as today, and everyone will have live TV by November 30th -- you'll see a new channel on the Peacock homepage that matches your local broadcast network.

The 24/7 live stream means you'll be able to watch local news and sports, plus NBC's primetime hits like Law & Order: SVU, Young Rock, Chicago Fire, and Dateline NBC. And we can't forget about mainstays like The Tonight Show and Saturday Night Live.

I'm checking out Peacock Premium Plus this month, and the local NBC affiliate out of Savannah isn't available. Once it does roll out, I'll see just how well it works.

I have a feeling it will work well, just like Paramount+ and local CBS. Whether or not it's worth it is something each streamer will have to decide. I likely won't keep it year-round as part of my Streaming Life, but I do see using it from time to time.

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Netflix with ads

Netflix recently launched its new ad-supported tier. It's $7/month, and is the same as the $10/month plan, except you can't download content for off-line viewing, and there are ads.

Being someone who doesn't do Netflix, I wasn't sure what it would be like. I dropped Netflix several years ago. I realized several years back that I didn't need to subscribe to everything all year long. Netflix was the first major service I dropped, and it was years before I ever used it again.

I only subscribed to Netflix when they brought back Mystery Science Theater 3000, and only kept it until I watched all the episodes. Then canceled it again. They brought the show back for one more season, so I subscribed again, then dropped it again.

Recently, I logged in (I only canceled service; I didn't delete the account) and picked the Basic with Ads tier to give it a try.

So, how did it go?

Well, so far, I've only watched a couple of things.

First, I watched Monty Python and the Holy Grail. There was a 30-second ad break to start, then about a half-hour in, there was a 75-second ad break, and one every 15 minutes (thereabouts) afterwards. It wasn't directly on the minute, and the breaks came at reasonable times within the film. If you are familiar with Monty Python and the Holy Grail, you know it's a bunch of skits thrown together within a King Arthur narrative. What I'm saying is the ad breaks came at reasonable spots, and not in the middle of a sentence, like you'll see on some free ad-supported services. They put some work into it to make it less of an intrusion.

The next movie I watched was The Dirty Dozen. No ad breaks within the entire film. Just the one before the film, but once the actual film started, there were no breaks for ads.

Now, whether or not this was an error, I don't know. Perhaps it was a fluke. But, when I watched two movies on the same day, one had ads at convenient places, and one had no in-movie ads at all.

Of course, these are both older films. But then, I wanted to ensure if I watched something, it was something I enjoyed. I could just put it on while doing something else and check to see when ad breaks happen. Maybe I'll do that.

But, my first impression is a good one. You see, I don't really mind ads. I just don't like them interrupting the flow of a scene. To the credit of Netflix, the experience was good.

The downside is that the Basic with Ads tier, as well as the Basic tier, are only 720p. So, that was not quite as good as the $16/month or $20/month plans, which are 1080p and UHD/4K respectively.

But, as I won't keep Netflix beyond the time of the subscription, and was only interested in seeing how the ad experience was, that's not that big of a deal. I knew going in what to expect. What I didn't expect was that ad experience would be so much better than most services.

Netflix did ads right. If you want Netflix in your Streaming Life, and the 720p resolution works for you, then consider saving another $3/month and go with the Basic with Ads tier. Next time I need to subscribe to Netflix, it's the way I'll do it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Watching election results

It's election day. Now, yes, I know, many people vote early. I won't go into the argument about early voting. Rather, I'm going to focus on how you can watch the election results.

If you're streaming, and want to watch the results, there are plenty of free options. There are also paid options.

Let's cover the free options first, okay. And, keep in mind, these aren't all of the free options, but these are the most popular. You may already know of these, but if not, and if you want to watch the election results, here are a few.

  • NBC News NOW
  • ABC News Live
  • LiveNOW from FOX
  • Newsy
  • Reuters

Most streaming devices have apps for these. And some live streaming services may have channels for these.

I'm not sure if I'll actually watch the election results. Yes, there are some races in which I have great interest, and will have cast my ballot by end of day today, I'll probably simply have my laptop on an election results Website or have my phone next to me while I watch something entertaining on my TV.

After all, I wanted more entertainment options as part of my Streaming Life, and haven't missed the yelling talking heads on the TV at night. But, if you want to watch election results life, these are some good options.

Monday, November 7, 2022

Hulu raises price on live streaming service

The list of live streaming services that are raising their prices continues. This time, it's Hulu. Only I'm not sure you can blame this increase on the same reason as the recent Sling TV increase.

Recently, Sling TV increased its prices by $5/month because of the settlement of a carriage dispute with Disney. Because of the increased fees Disney charges for their services, Sling TV has now gone up in price.

This increase for Hulu+Live TV isn't because of a carriage dispute, however. Disney owns Hulu, so Disney is paying itself for the service. But, the fact that other services have gone up recently -- YouTube TV, Fubo TV, and Vidgo all saw increases ahead of Sling TV -- means that Hulu+Live TV now goes up as well, and it gets lost in the mix.

Well, it's not lost on everyone.

Disney caused the price increases in the other services, then the day after the last service they gouged announced an increase, Disney's own service (Hulu+Live TV is owned by Disney) went up too.

I see what you did there, House of Mouse.

Disney first sent notices to subscribers last week, before streaming news outlets picked up on it. The first one I saw was the story on Cord Cutters News:

The price of Hulu (No Ads) + Live TV, Disney+ (No Ads), and ESPN+ (With Ads) will increase from $75.99/month to $82.00/month beginning 12/08/22.

The price adjustment will be reflected in your first billing cycle on or after December 8. Your payment method on file will be charged the new price unless you cancel before the start of your first billing cycle on or after December 8.

While Cord Cutters News has been running on a skeleton staff -- or so it appears -- for several months, they did get the jump on others with this, so good on them.

Bad for us, though, as this price increase is simply another in the long line of things that have cost a lot more in the lasts two years. It's getting harder to keep the price down on your Streaming Life. But it's like that with everything, it seems.

Sunday, November 6, 2022

Still running with my non-privacy phone

I've been testing a privacy phone for a few months now, and have decided on the phone to go with. I'm using the Google Pixel 4a running Lineage OS.

While the phone is a Google brand, it doesn't have Google Services running. That means some apps won't work, but most of the apps work just fine, or I have found alternate apps that work fine.

However, not everything is fine. And that's the problem. There are still some things that are very difficult to do with my Lineage OS phone. And, it related directly to apps.

This week, for instance, I'm out of the office at a conference, and the conference is using an app for keeping up with events and such. The app runs on iOS and Android, but it won't run on Lineage OS. At least, it won't show up in the Aurora Store, not the F-Droid Store. Maybe I should try to download from Google Play, but I'm trying to keep everything Google away from the phone. I don't want a Google back door.

So, I'm still running an iPhone with the app I need. I'm running it as secure as I can, but it still connects to Apple all the time, so that's not ideal.

For this conference, using the Whova (that's the app the conference is using) Website won't do, as it's not mobile friendly.

This continues to be a sore spot for those that want to run a secure, privacy focused phone. It's certainly a sore spot for me.

Saturday, November 5, 2022

Watching college football games this weekend: Week 10

Watching college football games this weekend: Week 10

College football season in now in Week Ten. The highlight will be the only match-up of two unbeaten teams as Tennessee plays at Georgia.

The other four unbeaten teams are also playing, and are all favored. Two are expected to be blowouts -- Ohio State and Michigan are big favorites -- but two are only one-score spreads -- Clemson and TCU are favored close.

If you want to watch all of the games this season, you need access to most of the networks, which can get expensive. Of course, you might not want to be able to watch all the games.

This weekend, only one game will not be on these networks. Here are the networks carrying games:

  • ABC
  • ACC Network
  • Big 12
  • Big Ten
  • CBS
  • CBS Sports Network
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN 3
  • ESPN U
  • SEC Network
  • ESPN+
  • Fox
  • Fox Sports 1
  • Longhorn Network (No games this week)
  • NBC
  • NFL Network
  • Pac 12 Network
  • Peacock
  • Stadium

Here is how to watch these networks listed. Note the prices reflect the announced price increases for Sling TV:

ABC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ACC Network

  • Sling Orange, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

Big Ten Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.

CBS

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Paramount+ Premium, $10/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

CBS Sports Network

  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Ultimate, $105/month.

ESPN

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN2

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN U

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

ESPN3

ESPN3 is usually included with a service that carries standard ESPN/ESPN2.

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

ESPN+

ESPN+ is a standalone sports programming service. It is not the same thing as regular ESPN that you get with cable or one of the live streaming services. Some content from ESPN, ESPN2, or other ESPN networks may be available on ESPN+, but often, it's content that is only available on ESPN+.

  • ESPN+, $7/month.
  • Disney Bundle, $14/month.

Fox

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Fox Sports 1

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

Longhorn Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.

NBC

  • Antenna, over the air, free.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Entertainment, $70/month.

NFL Network

  • Sling Blue, with Sports Extra, $51/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, with Sports Extra, $70/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.

Pac 12 Network

  • Sling Blue, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • Fubo TV Pro, with Fubo Extra, $78/month.
  • Fubo TV Elite, $80/month.

Peacock TV

Peacock is a standalone streaming service that carries NBCUniversal programming, including much sports from NBC as well as exclusive sports programming. Peacock Premium is $5/month, but is included with Xfinity Internet plans.

SEC Network

  • Sling Orange, $40/month.
  • Sling Orange+Blue, $55/month.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Hulu+Live TV, $70.
  • DirecTV Stream Choice, $90/month.
  • Fubo TV Ultimate, $100/month.

Stadium, Mountain West

  • Website, free.
  • Stadium app, free.
  • Plex, free.
  • Roku Channel, free.
  • Sling Free, free.
  • STIRR, free.
  • Tubi, free.
  • Xumo, free.
  • Vidgo Plus, $60/month.
  • YouTube TV, $65/month.
  • Fubo TV, $70/month.

This list of networks covers all the games airing today. It also covers games next week through Friday, as the early games next week are all on one of these networks.

NOTE: Longhorn Network is not needed this weekend.

To watch all the games, having an antenna won't really matter, as in order to get all the networks carrying games, the services also carry the OTA stations. So, how much to watch them all?

The services necessary will cost $85. That's $78 for Fubo TV Pro + Fubo Extra, along with $7 for ESPN+.

If you want college football in your Streaming Life, you have options, though it can get expensive depending just how many games you want to watch.

Popular