The days of strict, expensive cable TV packages are coming to an end.
I don’t remember the last time I watched anything on an actual TV channel, outside of visits to my parents’ house. And there’s such an overwhelming number of options, even without cable.
We live in a streaming age
Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime all have original series like Orange is the New Black and The Man in the High Castle, in addition to the countless cable and network TV shows they stream, and the regular rotation of new and classic films.
Even if you’re addicted to cable TV breakout stars like Girls and Shameless, you can find them either on one of the third-party streaming services.
Or you can find them on the cable channel’s own native, cable package-free streaming service, like HBO Go.
Throw YouTub into the streaming hat
And now, YouTube is adding its own TV App into the mix with its recently announced YouTube TV. For $35 a month, you can stream network channels like ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, and more.
This is a notable departure from the focus on cable streaming.
If you rely on Netflix and HBO Now for your TV-watching needs, you miss out on network series until the last season shows up on Netflix, which can take an unbearably long time when you absolutely need to catch up on Jane the Virgin, like, yesterday.
So with YouTube TV, you could stream episodes as they’re released, and you can even add Showtime for a little extra each month.
The $35 fee covers up to 6 (six!) linked accounts, and unlike Comcast, you can easily cancel whenever.
So if you decide to go on a no-TV cleanse or move to South America or something, you won’t be stuck paying a bill for something you don’t use.
A familiar scheme
It’s important to remember that this is not the first time that someone’s tried to set up a network TV streaming app.
In the past, several startups have been sued into oblivion for attempting what YouTube is doing.
YouTube isn’t a regular mom. YouTube is a cool mom
YouTube isn’t your average startup though.
They recently announced that their video views have surpassed 1 billion hours each day (and it’s still growing).
Compare that to the collective TV viewership of 1.25 billion hours a day (which is shrinking), and it’s clear that a paradigm shift is on the horizon, and YouTube wants to hurry it up, already. Since YouTube already has the viewership, networks are much more likely to open up the doors to streaming.
Almost too good to be true, so it is?
Streaming services are clearly thriving, and cord-cutting proponents are getting louder and louder. Remember, though: there’s no such thing as a free lunch, and bandwidth is a finite resource.
[clickToTweet tweet=”As more people use the internet to stream, less bandwidth is available & the price will go up. ” quote=”That means that the more people who decide to use the internet to watch their daily dose of drama, the less bandwidth we have to go around, and the more we’ll each have to pay for internet decent enough to stream our nightly Netflix.”]
You may save a few bucks with services like YouTube TV, but everyone, including you, may end up literally paying for it in the long run.