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LOL! Yup. That's why you combine....OTA + Online. :P The amount of OTA channels and content has improved over the analog days.

Speaking of OTA I need to put up an outdoor Antenna. Been putting it off. When it's real easy to do. I haven't watched OTA TV in quite awhile....I don't miss it....

I get all the News on my Roku box. Heck with all the public & private channels it works quite well.

I found this video to be kinda eh. I mean none of these people didn't think it would be useful to combine there services?

Oh well....

I think online content is meant to be combined with other forms of media. Which is why Netflix is a rental company and a companion to cable and not a threat....

I would have rather seen a study of people using net boxes with OTA added. How many people with cable use OTA?

Eh whatever.... Or a bunch of Roku boxes with the Newscaster channel, Netflix & Hulu Plus.

Eh... To each it's own right?


I have to say I was kind of surprised at some of the choices they made for the study. They set up the machines for the household which kind of killed any believability for me. Most people don't use these devices because the set-up part is just brutal for many of them. I don't know why it's so confusing for people, but it is.

They also didn't give any of them a Blu-ray player with built-in Netflix, Hulu et cetera. Which I think was a mistake. It's those devices that are the biggest threats to the cable and sat companies as they bring in Netflix via a trojan horse. It's just already on the device and once in the living room, people have plenty of time to see how much they can watch via Netflix or Hulu et cetera...

That's my take...

Tom MIller

This experiment failed on so many levels. In order to "cut the cord", they should have provided them with a type of DVR that will record over the air broadcasts from their local stations, and then have the additional options from these on-line providers. At this time, it is impossible just to go with one of the devices they provided these families and get all content that they would want. The other failure point, is that the average american house hold does not have fast enough broadband internet to get the instant satisifaction of streaming programming. If you have to wait, most people are impatient and will not wait that long for their programs to start. Change the two variables that I mentioned and do this experiment again, and I would then think the results might be different.


Well, had they given them a DVR it wouldn't have been much of a cord cutting.
I also agree that most households don't have fast enough internet connections. My parents on OTA wireless internet nor my in-laws with satellite internet have nowhere near the bandwidth (per second or per month cap limits) for this.
But the study did show 3 real issues.
1) TV just starts. With Netflix/Hulu/etc. you have to buffer data before watching.
Also, you have to pre-sign-in via the PC to get the TV to play. This needs to be streamlined (e.g., a TV ID as username, a default username & auto-registration)
2) All the "channels" are different. Want to watch NBC? You have to know to go to Hulu or something else. Want to watch ABC, that's Netflix now isn't it.
It is the same problem when you live in a foreign country for a while. In the US if I want stationary, I know to go to an office supply store. But, if I want stationary in AU/NZ I have to go to a bookstore. Both logical in their given system of categorization, but a big hassle when you just want to get something.
To cut the cable to have to either retrain people or re-categorize the system (e.g., add a facade at the Boxee/MCE level that re-divides shows by networks).
3) Passive vs active. That was a very good point two of the testers made. Broadcast TV minimizes your need to plan your choice ahead of time. Internet TV forces you to think about what you're going to watch.
I notice that with my kid. Whereas, I used to watch whatever cartoon was on Saturday morning and got to find a lot of things I never would have seen otherwise, my kid always watches the same episode of Scooby Doo. He watch es exactly what he wants to and is never forced out of his comfort zone by the whims of the network programming execs.
On one hand it is nice when you know what you want like I do. But when you're young and it means your palette never expands.
Also, it means that my kid sees shows no one else does, because while these shows are on DVD, they aren't on broadcast anymore (short lived PBS show).


Of course it failed. It was conducted by an AD AGENCY! It was designed to show how awful all the boxes are that provide minimal opportunity for ad placement.


Of course it failed. It was conducted by an AD AGENCY!


Anybody who voluntarily cuts the cord at this point will also have figured out OTA, and will likely be proactive in their approach to technology generally and TV in particular.

Anybody who can't find anything to interest them in the Netflix streaming catalog is either hopelessly passive, or has a really dull mind. Sadly, this probably describes a lot of TV viewers.

my kid always watches the same episode of Scooby Doo.

My kids get on particular kicks which see them watching massive amounts of the same thing, but from what I can see these shift over time. And some of them are things you wouldn't have thought of, like 30 Second Bunny Theater or YouTube walkthroughs of Super Mario Galaxy. For a while they were doing nothing but Mythbusters.

Whatever they're watching, they stay in charge, and there are no commercials. Both good things for younger viewers, IMHO.


The thing is most people are dependent upon their cable company for broadband, so if too many people "cut the cord" all the cable companies will do is either limit broadband or raise the price. If it ever got too bad I can see them raising the broadband price to current broadband/cable combo pricing and packaging it as, "pay $99.00 for broadband and get cable tv for free". Believe me, "cutting the cord" will be a short lived phenomena if it ever became widespread.


My wife & me must have broken the world record for watching the entire Mcleod's Daughters series on Netflix. All 224 hour long episodes in about 8 weeks. I now speak with an Australian accent. There is plenty to watch, They should have hooked up a Mac mini with an OTA dvr setup for them, it might have been a different story. Cheers Mate.


That was an exercise in futility, typical work from clueless ad guys. Most people, esp "normal" people, are not interested in cord cutting. At best netflix is a threat to premium channels not cable/sat service itself. Cord cutting is for the tech savvy, cost conscious consumer.



So if Broadband rose to such a ridiculous price would you pay it?

Or not? Maybe if a lot of people quit after an insane price hike they would come to there senses and lower it.

You don't have to take it. Sure you would have to settle for DSL or freaking dial-up temporally. At least you would be showing them your in control and not going to take it.

If you can't do that. Then they win.

It's everyone's choice who pays these companies to keep em afloat.

They don't own you. You own them. Never forget that. You're in control & make choices of how you want to spend your hard earned money.


I work for the agency behind this video and have designed and directed the experiment. As the video appeared on Crunchgear and Kotaku without context, I explain what we did and what we learned in this post - http://bit.ly/dX7YHY.

I'll be happy to answer any questions about the experiment, too.


to me it looks as if these people don't really know what they wanna watch and want someone else to chose for them. Plus they also just wanted it to be there not have to wait for something to load. Not me I know what I like and what I wanna watch this is why I love having netflix Hulu amazon on demand right on my tv.


I am cutting the cord today...AT&T U-Verse is going up Feb 1, again. So my next bill will be $149.00 for internet and stripped down basic HD package and 10Mbps. No premium channels. That's simply too much for the lack of value.

So I am going to Broadband from TW only @ $53 for 30Mbps. Between Roku, Netflix, Amazon (which is on Rokue) and my HD Antenna I should be fine. So I will save $1000 + a year. Use that for a nice road trip somewhere or savings.

It's not even that I can't afford $150'ish monthly bill because we can, it's just the value for the fairly basic combo package we have is not worth that price tag.


Not surprise by the results. They gave a bunch of boxes to a bunch of people that new nothing about how they worked. It all comes down to one thing. Hill-Holliday is an advertising agency. If people start cutting the cord they are going to be in deep trouble as add revenue will plummet. Simple as that. They want to show people that cord cutting does not works so they can keep their business as it is.


I think it was a good experiment. The people selected were just "regular people". Right now "regular people" have heard about cord cutting but haven't researched it, don't know what their options are etc. If I dropped a Roku or Xbox off at my parents house, hooked it up and then said see ya in a week they would be clueless. I think that's kind of the point this experiment is making.

If you try the same experiment with people who are actively planning on trying to cut the cord, you will have very different results. They will understand their OTA options, hulu, Netflix etc.

The question is; are the number of people who are actively thinking about cutting the cord growing, because a certain percentage will succeed. If this number is greater than the number of new subscribers then cable TV will slowly atrophy like it appears to be doing right now. If cable loses 300,000 subs a year, it will take a LONG time before it is gone completely.


Since I cut the cord, I find myself both going to OTA channels for general watching, and also spending less time in front of my TV. This is NOT a bad thing. I can go out and do social things without missing out on my favorite shows (you know, what once was called living). And OTA does not suffer the major disadvantages that it did back in the 80's when cable was taking over, with many OTA channels getting BETTER video quality then the channels you get through your cable line because its now an all digital signal. Also, wheres the Windows media center option? With the ability to integrate OTA with a capture card, DVD/Blueray, Games, Netflix, Boxee, and Hulu desktop all in one interface (ugly in my opinion unless you skin it), I think its a way better option then using a dedicated device like an Apple TV or Boxee Box. (at least for now)


NEWSFLASH - When you take away something people like and replace it with something they have no interest in using they aren't happy about it.

NEWSFLASH - teens and kids aren't happy when their parents take away something they like to save money.

Lots of good responses on here, we should have written the ad agency and told them not to annoy those people with this uselessness.

Cord cutting isn't for everyone, nor is trading in your landline for a cell phone, but technology moves forward.

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"are the number of people who are actively thinking about cutting the cord growing, because a certain percentage will succeed"

I think this is why the experiment is largely meaningless. Giving boxes to people who aren't interested doesn't really tell you much. What you really want to find out is how easy and how successful are the alternatives when people *are* interested.


This study was doomed from the beginning. No over the air broadcasts and asking them to buy into the technology with no previous experience with it? That was just stupid.

In order for this to be legitimate you have to find 5 families and qualify they have enough internet bandwidth to support streaming. That is part of the decision when cutting the cord.

Next, make sure they have over the air broadcasts with a suitable DVR.

Last, allow them to use the various streaming services for at least 3 months as a supplement to their normal cable/satellite service before asking them to cut the cord.

I am not ready to cut the cord either but at least make it a legitimate study. After a little more than a year I have slashed my cable service by a third because my TV time is about 50 percent cable and 50 percent streaming.


The last minute sums it these folks don't want to pick the shows they want to watch. So obviously these folks were picked to fail and proove again that the internet will never succeed.


I'm getting sick of this cord cutting crap.

I mean not everyone has cable or satellite to begin with as they don't have time to watch a dozen channels they are paying for.

Most find free OTA TV to work just fine too.

They maybe they add in rentals too. Along with streaming.

Not everyone has a cable to cut....

Carl LaFong

Not offering an OTA option? I'd like to see this experiment with OTA local lineup in HD supplemented with Netflix.

Also - making a point that the downloads took long while showing the Roku buffering with two stars tells me they need to work on their internet speeds in that household.

Cut the cord over a year ago and haven't looked back.


I'm not at all surprised by these results. These folks simply found out what the rest of us already know. For the average consumer these devices do not allow you to 'cut the cord'...yet. Currently they offer an enhancement to our entertainment choices. Some have decided to cut the cord and go exclusively with these boxes and OTA so yes, it can be done but most won't be satisfied with the results...again I say yet. We're all hoping for a different paradigm in the future. This is just the first step down that road.


Kind of funny... or sad. Hearing somebody say: I want somebody else to make the decision for me seems incredible to me. That's precisely why I cancelled cable. I don't want a company charging me for 50 channels I won't watch. These boxes give more power to consumers: they can choose the content and the time.
As for the lack on content on Netflix, it's a matter of being a little more adventurous. I have more than 300 movies on my streaming queue. Before Netflix, I had only watched a couple or scandinavian and korean movies. Now my queue is full of them.


Or you could just Read A BOOK.


@ bonzo

A DVR that works with over the air transmissions is still cutting the cord.

As to your other 3 points while I agree setting up initially could get easier I think the irritation was amplified by the fact it all had to be done at once or there is no entertainment at all.

I could take 5 families that have never swam before and throw them into the deep end and prove that normal people will drown. I could take the same 5 families and give them time to learn to swim and some of them might love swimming.

I would consider cutting the cord without prior knowledge and experience with streaming as a very abnormal decision. I would consider doing it without local broadcasting even more abnormal.

Chances are these 5 families might still not think they could cut the cord but I bet most of them that had enough bandwidth are still streaming.


Its a flawed study. They need to setup everything for the customers and then ask them to use it. They spent all the time in trying to sign up to service, low bandwidth issues, setup networking ... come on! Looks like comcast funded this study


I easily cut the cable cord. Wanna know how? Netflix on PS3 + 4GB Flash + PC with internet access to downloadable TV and movies= no cable. HD antenna for air tv added and I got everything I wanted and not spending $100 on cable for something I mostly didn't watch.


What do you guys want to see to make the streaming services work for you. What features. Zubu is here to make it simple and user friendly and need your help
Please let us know. in exchange for your help, we are happy to provide people beta versions of our product at discounted prices


After realizing your needs, we are rolling out a wireless home theater solution with access to all the streaming media and your content on your itunes and computer. What do you guys want to see done differently. Our goal is to simplify the way you interact with your home theater system and provide all the content on demand so you are not tied to a $80-120 monthly bill. We know that the TV viewing via the streaming services is somewhat limited, but that will change in the next year. Tell us what you want and you features and options you like to see


They should do this experiment in reverse with me.

I've never had Cable TV, and haven't had OTA for the past 10 years.

When I watch TV at other places, I can't stand it. Tons of ads, tuning in late and missing the first half of an episode or series, waiting a week for the next episode...

Of course, I'd probably be fine getting Netflix cut, too. Plenty of books to read.


I can understand the too many choices dilemma. I went to Best Buy to look for a laptop for my sister. They had about 50 different computers with very little differentiation in specifications and all of them had gaudy design . It would have been a much easier choice at an Apple store.


Our family did exactly that over this past Christmas! We reconnected with cable after 2.5 years without it, but found cable TV unsatifying for the price. We ended up getting a Blu-Ray player that streams and subcribed to Netflix, and have been using it nonstop!

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Kids make a person responsible and mature and help us to understand life better!


I agree with some of the comments above. You have to combine over-the-air broadcasts with an internet connected box. I think if people knew their options a little better, they'd see that it is possible to everyday folks. It's more than just the $$ savings too.

I cut the cord last year and have been blogging about how others can do the same. http://kickoutcable.com

Just a guy

I am sorry but all I saw from this video was that people are greedy and lazy. Everyone wants to live in a microwave society where all you have to do is press the popcorn button and suddenly everything is the way you want it! Honestly if your willing to pay that much money just so u don't have to touch the controller for more than five seconds You Are Lazy. Get a life grow a brain and all that...

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If I dropped a Roku or Xbox off at my parents house, hooked it up and then said see ya in a week they would be clueless.

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