Do we still need TV in an age of streaming

The age of cable/satellite TV seems to be no more due to the popularity of streaming websites such as YouTube and Netflix. But is that really true? Here we discuss why that might be the case.

One of the winning points of streaming versus cable is that it’s convenient in some situations compared to TV. For one, content on streaming sites is usually available to you whenever you want. Want to rewatch the whole first season of The Good Place on Netflix? Then all you do is look up the title in a search engine then you can watch it all over again.

With TV, once you miss something, you can’t rewind it back or use a search engine to re-watch what you missed. With streaming services, you don’t have to set the VCR/DVD player to take recordings anymore when you plan to be away from home.

Sure, episodes of shows that are released on TV come out before their streamed counterparts. However, those episodes are released relatively fast enough after the TV version or even aired at the same time. The anime streaming site Crunchyroll is a prime example, where the subtitled versions of the anime they stream is released usually within a day of the broadcasted episode.

Even TV stations have their own streaming services, such as CBC that has live streaming services for certain shows. However, in some cases slower releases can be better when in exchange a whole season/series worth of episodes are released together, giving the viewer a longer experience with the show to get them hooked in.

TV channels have their limits of what content is available to the viewer. If you want to watch anime, these days other than kid shows like Pokémon, anime is not broadcasted on TV except in Japan. So, if you want to watch content that’s from other countries it’s only accessible through streaming sites.

There are even shows that are not broadcasted and are only watchable through a streaming service, such as with Netflix’s original shows that are only available to watch on their site.

Streaming is generally a cheaper option for some people since you would only need to pay for an internet bill instead of both an internet and cable bill. It can bump up the amount you’re spending per month from $50 to $70 per month to $100 plus per month. Although most streaming services have monthly subscriptions they are not as expensive, generally ranging from $7 to $20 per month.

There are even some sites that give you a choice if you want to pay or not. In exchange you have to deal with ads interrupting the show or delayed access to new content, but sometimes it’s better than paying for the service. Speaking of advertisements, one of the major points of TV is it’s an advertisement banner of sorts where companies release commercials as a way to sell their products.

However, streaming services have ads of their own whether it be through banners at the top, bottom or sides of the web pages or have them play at the beginning or ending of the video.

In the end it seems that cable/satellite television is losing its purpose as a couch potato- making machine, and streams are taking over.

Editorial opinions or comments expressed in this online edition of Interrobang newspaper reflect the views of the writer and are not those of the Interrobang or the Fanshawe Student Union. The Interrobang is published weekly by the Fanshawe Student Union at 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd., P.O. Box 7005, London, Ontario, N5Y 5R6 and distributed through the Fanshawe College community. Letters to the editor are welcome. All letters are subject to editing and should be emailed. All letters must be accompanied by contact information. Letters can also be submitted online by clicking here.