Tech, Autos, & Gear in Layman's Terms Since 2006

December 5, 2011 • Editorials

TV or Not TV? That is the Question


Okay, I admit it, the title of this post is stupid. Then again the working title, “I Haven’t Turned on My TV Since September but I’m Enjoying the Fall Television Season Anyway” was no bargain either.

So let me just get to the post.


This past September I got an offer on the TiVo Premier that I couldn’t pass up. The company had recently released their iPad app and the only way to access the full set of features was by upgrading my TiVo. The offer made it easy and, a few days later the box arrived.


Little did I know that the cable cards I had been using would no longer work and I needed to swap the two cards for a single M-Card. So much for doing my research ahead of time. It was a busy couple of weeks so I didn’t have a chance to get to the cable company’s office. Elana was kind enough to stop by and, after a few weeks of the TV not working I had the right card. I put the new card in, went through the setup and… It didn’t work. I called the cable company, went through their voice menu hell and eventually got to a live person. One minute in the call dropped. I repeated the process and… The call dropped again. I gave up. Two days later I tried again. This time I got someone helpful and the call didn’t drop. We went through the setup process and… It didn’t work. “Mr Cohen, you’ll have to get a tech out because the card is bad. That was over two months ago. Since then I’ve just put off scheduling a time for someone to come out. The urgency just hasn’t been there. You see, for the past three months I’ve used my iPad as my tv and I’m perfectly happy with it.


Between watching live tv when I am home my cable company lets me watch all my channels live on the iPad so long as I am in my home network and Hulu, the ABC app, some purchases on iTunes and a few others I’m able to access more television than I have time to watch.

But there’s more. On the one hand I am finding that watching a show on the iPad is more than comfortable. I really don’t miss watching on a big screen. If I do want to watch on something larger though, whether because I want the big screen or I want to watch with someone else- after all, watching solo on the iPad is one thing watching on it with someone else, not so much- I can thanks to my Apple TV and iOS’s ability to mirror the image of the iPad. I’ve used it more than a few times and it works great.

The result of all of this is that it is now December and I feel no sense of urgency to get my TiVo working. Sure, eventually I will but the past three months have made it clear that there is an entirely new range of possibilities when it comes to media consumption and this is just the beginning. Can you say iTV? I knew you could.

4 Responses to " TV or Not TV? That is the Question "

  1. Anonymous says:

    Three of the past four movies I have watched were on my phone via netflix while I was home. Of course I am posting this from my phone as I sit at my desk which has my 17″ laptop and 20″ monitor key board and mouse. What is this world coming to?

  2. Amy Zunk says:

    How many of those iPad apps require that you are also cable subscriber to make them work? I would love to be able to watch more channels on my iPad (aside from Hulu plus and Netflix available content), but it seems that they dont work unless you are a current cable subscriber.  Sorry, I dropped cable over a year ago and am in no hurry to start paying BrightHouse for cable again.  Any thoughts on this are greatly appreciated.  Thanks!

    • Anonymous says:

      The cable subscription is still key here unfortunately. Hulu and Netflix obviously are their own thing but the cable company still has tons of control in this area. I would love if they would start offering a “mobile only” level of service but I don’t see this as likely any time soon. Then again, who knows what Apple might have up its sleeve??
      Sent from my iPad

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