Cutting the cable cord with your Mac, Apple TV, and iPad

“How can an Apple watcher and gadget geek girl cut the cable TV cord?” Kate MacKenzie writes for PixoBebo. “Frankly, it’s not easy, but there are plenty of entertainment and information alternatives if you’re willing to explore what cable TV does not provide. First, you’ll need an Apple TV connected to the internet and your television.”

“Second, you’ll need to explore the alternatives. That means Apple TV apps (many of which require you to have a cable TV subscription anyway; what a waste) combined with some good old fashioned elbow grease, and a healthy dose of YouTube,” MacKenzie writes. “YouTube is built-in to Apple TV but all too often YouTube videos get pulled and can’t be viewed (I’m not talking videos of cats and babies). I get plenty of mileage from using the Mac app Downie to download YouTube videos and keep them stored locally, on my Mac, DVR style. Downie is a video download app for the Mac. Drag and drop a video link to Downie and it downloads the video and stuffs it into iTunes in a format you can use to view on Apple TV, iPhone, or iPad. Oh, and it’s not just YouTube. Downie supports downloaded videos from over 500 different sites that do video, but also handle 4k video on YouTube. That’s Ultra HD resolution. It’s simple to use, too. Drag a video link to Downie and it just works.”

“Unlike a DVR which can be set to record specific shows automatically, Downie is a manual effort,” MacKenzie writes. “Using Apple TV, the Mac, and iPad through AirPlay is a good combination, and can certainly fill the day with plenty of information and entertainment– just not all the two dozen channels I want out of the 300 I pay the cable TV company to make available.”

More info and links in the full article here.

23 Comments

    1. If you can’t stop watching TV, try this:

      Cut your TV viewing exactly IN HALF. I’m willing to bet you’ll see a noticeable improvement in the quality of your life. You’ll also notice how TV advertising has been attempting to manipulate your life into that of a dull-witted consumerist DRONE. TV advertising = Stupifaction.

      Then again, there’s Internet advertising. But there are ways to avoid most of it. Bwahaha.

      1. Continuing to veer off topic:

        Q: Is it ethical to NOT watch advertising, seeing as the advertisers are paying for the content?

        A: I use this simple test:

        – Q: Is the advertiser offering me something actually good, important, useful and meaningful to my life?

        – A1: If so, then please watch their advertisements!

        – A2: If not, free yourself.

        Another useful test is whether an advertiser is AD SLAMMING you. If they are, then boycott anything having to do with them forever. I defined several levels of Ad Slamming a number of years ago over at my ‘zunipus’ blog. The most basic of Ad Slamming is a repetition of advertising for the same product within one advertising session. The most vicious of Ad Slamming shows the exact same add twice in succession. I have an obscene name for that level of customer abuse.

        My least favored Ad Slammer of the week: MacDonalds, the dickheads. Two roller-coaster, cruddy 1970s quality grease burger ads every ad session. Abuse. No excuse. Boycott. I hate you McDonalds.

        1. McDonalds pioneered the fast food movement, for better or worse. $1.00 breakfast burritos are incredible.

          As a left-field denizen I’m guessing you also hate Walmart, as well as neocons and not necessarily in that order.

          Mighty fine. But watch your blood pressure …

          1. Ever attempting to shove people into little boxes, are we?

            Me, I avoid grease in my diet whenever possible. And what exactly ARE those Chicken McNuggets made of?

            Regarding Walmart, and REAL conservative would despise them for actively wrecking manufacturing in the USA. But you’re not a real conservative, are you? None of you ‘Neo’ people are. You’re just little propaganda puppets of the 1% and the corporates. Wind you up and out spouts the talking point list for the day. I never did like ventriloquist dummies right, left or center.

      1. Cable doesn’t preclude one from having a creative mind and participating in outdoor activities. Like everything else, it’s all about how you use it and having the self-discipline to moderate your level of engagement.

    1. I used to think the same thing. But I have a Tivo with over the air channels and an AppleTV. I use Netflix a lot. I get the few cable show that I watch that are current off of iTunes. I spend a lot less time watching commercials (almost none) and don’t waste time watching mindless reality shows. Plus I have an extra $100 in my pocket each month.

  1. Not only did I discontinue my Cable TV service from Comcast last May, but I recently bought my own cable modem so I don’t have to “rent” their equipment. Should have don’t that 10 years ago.

    1. Same here. Have use the same cable modem in three different state on three different cable providers. Will have to upgrade soon though as Time Warner will have 50/5 in the fall as long as I have an updated modem. Can’t wait.

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