It wasn’t long ago that Comcast introduced Stream, a new streaming TV service. It will still be a little while before the service is actually available to everyone. First it will be launched in Boston and progress to Chicago and Seattle. By early next year anyone should be able to get Stream.
The first most attractive and prominent thing about Stream that seems to be garnering a lot of attention is the extremely cost-efficient price. For a mere $15 a month you will have access to a service that even includes HBO. The other possibly great thing about Stream is the fact that Comcast is swearing that the user-experience will be extremely easy. Comcast even compares the experience to that of purchasing a music online or receiving an email. This is very surprising, especially because many people know Comcast for its infamously terribly customer service paired along with prices that are rather ridiculous. A lot of people are wondering exactly what the deal is here. Is Comcast really providing a dream-come true service? Maybe not.
Even though the service is technically 15 bucks a month and Comcast even claims that no other devices are required—even a television set—it is still going to be more expensive with the whole picture in mind. It is generally known and understood that when you are using a streaming service you’ll need broadband Internet connection, but if you get Stream you will have to buy with Comcast. That bumps the bill up to between $50-$60 and you must also factor in the modem which the majority of people rent for about $15 every month. After you do the math it is looking more like things will cost upwards of $75-$85 and that isn’t including fees and taxes.
The other thing to keep in mind is that, if price is what attracted you in the first place, you can actually get most of the stuff on Stream completely free. So while you are looking at $75-$85 for Stream you could just buy a $25 high-definition antenna. Many of the broadcast networks which are on Stream can also be received just as well via the antenna, such as Fox, CBS, ABC, PBS, and NBC. There are other cheaper options aside from a high-definition antenna, too. You can even go through Comcast and get HBO, basic television, and even Internet for around $45 in some places.
You must be at your residence in order to watch Stream. With other somewhat similar providers, like Netflix, Sling TV, and Hulu, an individual can go anyplace and watch television and movies on virtually any device so long as they have Internet. Stream does not have this capability, although to compensate you can download things unto the DVR and watch them later—probably with a fee, though.
The only big channel which Stream offers is HBO. That is the only network which viewers have to pay for otherwise, but many other similar services, like Sling, offer several different channels that are usually paid for. Otherwise the other networks on Stream can be watched for free anyway.