Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Trading Satellite for Netflix


So most of you know by now that saving money has been my main mission in life, especially since the economy tanked a few years ago. We've managed to keep our satellite service with Dish Network for years now, and I have to say that we are still happy with it.

We've downgraded our service quite a bit in the last two years and they've given us plenty of discounts too on top of that. We have two dual-tuner DVRs in our house and subscribe to the Dish Family package with our locals. It's a total of about 50 or so channels, and most of them are pretty good. We get channels like Nick Jr., Investigation Discovery, Animal Planet, Hallmark and several others that our family really likes. Still, even with the discounts, because of our two DVRs, we are putting out about $40 a month.

We were thinking of completely getting rid of the satellite (no small thing when you realize we've had a DVR for about 10 years now) and saving that money. We've heard good things about Netflix, and were told that for about $8 a month we can download unlimited content to our computer, Xbox or Wii. For a few dollars more you can also get DVDs sent to your door.

We're big movie fans. We don't do the pay-per-view though, unless they give us the free certificates for them (which does happen now and then). If it's not a movie we're sure we want to buy, then we usually get it from Redbox. So really, the idea of having new movies so readily available to us sounds great. But I'm wondering if there's a downside?

Have any of you subscribed to Netflix? What can I expect to find if we make this jump? I've heard we can download stuff to our laptop and then hook it up to our TV to watch it on the bigger screen. That would be great, since it would mean that we could still watch our favorite TV shows off the TV station websites. Am I right? Or is it more complicated than that?

Anyway, if we go ahead and do this (and we're about 80% sure we will right now), it would mean a savings of over $30 a month. It might not seem like a lot to some people, but for a family of seven, saving any amount of money is a big plus! They do have a free trial, so I guess we'd have nothing to lose on trying it.

So what do you think? Does it sound like a good idea?