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Cable TV Vs Internet TV: A Guide to the Difference

With the streaming services or as we like to put it – Internet TV – are gaining more and more popularity, cable TV might still have more perks that may make you reconsider if you really want to cut the cord this month or not. Arguably, internet TV brings you ease on so many levels, but does that mean that cable TV has no advantages of its own? Both services deliver live and on-demand content to their viewers. However, there are some differences between them that may go beyond the array and option of the content. Therefore, in this article, we are going to enlighten you with the various difference that can be pointed out between cable TV and internet TV.

1. Cost:

Our prime concern is always the cost. We base our decisions and probably inclination towards certain options if we find out that it comes at a comparatively less price. So, here is the thing, cable TV may be slightly more expensive than internet TV. Now, hear us out. When the streaming services first came, the main reason for their widespread was how affordable they were. But with the passage of time and the newer options in internet TV, the price point between both television options is becoming almost the same.

If you are looking for a cost-effective and all-in-one cable TV provider then we recommend you check out Cox cable packages because they provide an amazingly wide range of HD channels including ESPN, Disney, History, HGTV, and many more. Not only this, but you can also get streaming apps on your TV screen. That is literally what the best of both worlds is all about. These packages are incredibly easy to customize and you can special Channel Packs to your basic TV plan. With Cox, you can take back control of what you watch so you don’t have to pay extra for something that is not in your use.

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On the other hand, when it comes to streaming services, the basic-level service may turn out to be cheaper than cable TV but also keep in mind that the basic one comes with fewer channels as well. Also, internet TV typically does not have tiers of various plans like cable TV providers. However, you need to make sure that you get yourself subscribed to the internet TV that has all the channels you watch on their platform to stream.

2. Reliability:

There is a number of advantages to internet TV. However, where reliability is concerned, cable TV may win the race. Generally speaking, the reliability factor of a cable is higher while on the other hand, streaming services depend on the availability of the internet.

What if you are bored at home and want to stream internet TV but your internet connection keeps buffering or not working at all? Well, in this case, cable TV is definitely more reliable as you don’t have to worry about the internet going down over minute inconveniences.

When it comes to portability and mobility, back in the beginning days of internet TV, everyone was all praised and impressed because it allows you to watch streaming services on any supported devices like computers, iOS/Android tablets, or phones and you could watch it from anywhere, so long as you had an internet connection. It also allows you to pause or rewind the program or fast-forward it to the part you were anticipating the most. But now times have changed and cable TV also has almost the same features as internet TV.

Cable TV
Cable TV

Cable TV has upgraded to what it was years ago. Now, you can put a pause on the program you are watching so you can answer the doorbell or get a snack from your kitchen. You can also record the content and watch it later, much like internet TV. In addition to this, many cable TV providers also allow their users to watch cable TV on the go, and that too with so much ease. The bottom line is, both forms of television are walking almost side-by-side in various ways.

3. Content Selection:

The selection of content varies with both mediums. Although, on the whole, we can say that cable television offers more channels than streaming services or internet TV. You can get variants of almost all the channels. The availability of premium channels is also greater than internet TV. With cable television, you can get premium channels for an upcharge and also enjoy premium music channels.

Internet TV, on the other hand, only offers channels that belong to major networks. It also only offers the variants of main channels. And if you want to watch premium channels, then you will have to get them as add-ons. Cable television has an upper hand in content availability. Their range of channels is astonishingly in hundreds and will most likely contain all the variants of every channel for sports-related networks. Again, the availability of wide content also depends on the cable package you are subscribed to. You can get a basic package, where you can only watch channels that may not have variants available, or go for the one with 200+ channels in HD.

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4. Video Quality:

For video quality, let’s break down internet TV into two parts – streaming services and live TV streaming. On-demand streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video provide the viewers to watch content on 1080p HD or even 4K video quality. However, the story is slightly different from live TV streaming. With live TV, you are most likely going to have to watch the content on 720p video quality and even lower than that.

Again, it depends on your internet connection. If your internet service is not up to the mark or the Wi-Fi signals are not strong, the video quality may go even lower than 720p. Also, there is always a possibility of buffering with internet TV. You may need to brace yourself for a longer load time. Meanwhile, cable television allows its viewers to watch content on higher quality of 1080p and 4k definition, and that too without any buffering. It delivers the content consistently without making you wait for content to load properly.

Internet TV Streaming
Internet TV Streaming

This difference may not matter much to people who are not used to watching programs on cable TV but if you are one of those who are thinking of switching completely to internet TV, then you might want to brace yourself for 720p after constantly watching the content or perfect pixels of 1080p.

Overall Difference:

Cable Television:

  • Cable TV can be more expensive than internet TV but it depends on the package you opt for
  • The installation requires set-top boxes
  • Its broadcast does not depend on the internet
  • You can get some really amazing deals at discounted prices

Internet Television:

  • It is less expensive than cable TV but the array of channels and options are also fewer
  • The streaming and its quality depends on the internet you have
  • It is supported by different devices
  • You can get premium channels as add-ons for an additional cost

Final Thoughts:

Both cable television and internet television have their own distinct pros and cons. Both services differ from each other in the above-mentioned ways. Now that you have read all the major differences between the two, we hope that you have made up your mind as to which service suits you the most. After all, you should always go for the one that caters to your needs.

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