Cordkillers 286 - Freedom Isn't Fee'd (w/ Luke Bouma)
Consumers are paying more hidden fees, new Star Trek trailer, and how to disable those pesky Roku TV ads. All this and more on Cordkillers! With special guest Luke Bouma.
We're off next week due to Columbus Day!
This week on Spoilerin' Time: The Good Place (402), The Righteous Gemstones (108), Mr. Robot (401), Joker, The Larry Sanders Show (101-102)
Next episode: The Good Place (403-404), The Righteous Gemstones (109), Mr. Robot (402-403), The Larry Sanders Show (103-104)
CordKillers: 286 - Freedom Isn't Fee'd
Recorded: October 7 2019
Guest: Luke Bouma
Netflix's new animated Christmas film, Klaus
How Cable Companies Use Hidden Fees to Raise Prices and Disguise the True Cost of Service
- Consumer reports issued a report called "How Cable Companies Use Hidden Fees to Raise Prices and Disguise the True Cost of Service." It's analysis found that companies add $37.11 per month in company-imposed fees to the average bill, making the average that a US consumer pays for cable $217.42. Consumer Reports analyzed 787 bills from 12 companies, which included TV. 426 of them all included internet, and 282 included phone. company-imposed fees are not required by tax or other gregulatory requirements. Examples include broadcast TV fees, regional sports fees, HD technology fees and "convenience fees." It may also include rental charges for set-top boxes and modems. Frontier charges a $10 router rental fee whether the customer provides their own router or not. Consumer Reports recommend cord-cutting since OTT providers like PlayStation Vue, YouTube TV and Sling TV do not charge hidden fees. However they note that cable companies are moving some fees into Internet access as well.
How to Watch
TiVo Launches TiVo Edge DVR and Announces TiVo+ Streaming Service
- TiVo did in fact launch the TiVo Age for cable and TiVo Edge for antenna last week. The EDGE supports Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision HDR. TiVo EDGE for antenna is $350 plus $7 a month or $250 lifetime for the guide service. TiVo EDGE Cable is $400 and $15 a month or $550 lifetime. TiVo also launched the TiVo+ streaming service collecting free programs from multiple providers.
Roku & Walmart Team Up to Create an Onn Branded Roku Smart Soundbar
- Roku announced a Wal-Mart in-house version of its Roku Smart Soudnbar and Wireless subwoofer under Wal-Mart's Onn brand. Each costs $129, compared to $180 for the Roku branded ones announced last month. The Onn Soundbar has 40W of peak power not 60W ships with an infrared remote instead of the voice controlled one in the Roku version. The Onn subwoofer has 150 peak watts of power compared to 250.
Roku Adds Interactive Pop-Up Ads to OTA TV & Cable TV on Roku TVs
- One cool new feature that Cordcutters News tipped us off to, thank you Luke, was that in Roku OS 9.2, interactive pop-up ads now may show up during commercial breaks when you're watching cable or over-the-air on Roku TVs. You can stop the practice by turning off the "Use information from TV inputs" setting but that will also turn off recommendations of more ways to watch.
Amazon Brings Its Freetime Kids Service to Fire TV
- Amazon has launched its Freetime kids service for FireTV, starting with the FireTV Stick to be followed by Fire TV devices and Fire TV edition TVs. Freetime lets parents set content restrictions as well as age and time limits. If you pay for Freetime Unlimited you also get ad-free access to kids movies and TV shows.
What to Watch
A full trailer of Star Trek: Picard was shown at New York ComicCon with a premiere date for the 10-episode season of January 23, 2020. The trailer shows more appearances by other Star Trek characters.
- There was a also a new teaser trailer for Star Trek: Discovery showing the crew dealign with arriving 930 years from their present. we did not get a season 3 Discovery premiere date. But the first of the Short Trek mini episodes was release showing Spock's first day on the Enterprise. New Short Treks will arrive October 10th, November 14th, December 12th and January 9th.
New The Expanse teaser trailer from Amazon shows new worlds and problems
- There's also a trailer for The Expanse showing the crew of the Rocinante preparing for a challenge to explore through the ring gate while JFK talks to them.
Season 4 of The Expanse comes to Prime video Dec. 13, 2019.
Harley Quinn enjoys a Joker-free life in the first Birds of Prey trailer
- We got a trailer for Birds of Prey, starring Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, alongside Black Canary, Huntress and detective Renee Montoya. They're trying to save Cassandra Cain ( one fo the many Batgirl characters from he comics). The villain is Black Mask. Birds of Prey comes out February 7th, 2020.
‘Sesame Street’ Moves to HBO Max in Five-Season Deal
- Sesame Street will move from HBO to HBO Max starting with season 51 of the show for five 35-episode seasons. There will also be annual specials. HBO Max will also create a Sesame Street hub where you can access episodes selected from all 50 seasons of previous Sesame Street episodes. As before episodes will appear later on PBS and PBS Kids.
AMC has renewed The Walking Dead for an 11th season. Lauren Cohan will return as Maggie, who left the show after the first five episodes of season 9.
M. Night Syamalan's Apple TV+ show Servant has a trailer showing it's about a couple who hire a nanny to look after a therapy doll after the loss of their child. It arrives November 28.
The Snowpiercer TV series will NOT show on TBS, as Warner Media changed their minds and say it will show on TNT in spring 2020 as originally planned.
The first of FandangoNow's IMAX Enhanced content arrived with Spider-Man: Far from Home, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and more available on Sony 4K Android TVs in the US. More devices and titles to come.
6 Underground starring Ryan Reynolds, directed by Michael Bay will come to Netflix December 13.
Pluto TV launched an entire Degrassi channel if you want to watch a young Drake.
Hulu has a trailer for season 2 of Castle Rock, arriving October 23.
Ava Duvernay has signed on to direct the pilot of an HBO Max series based on the DMZ comics.
And ESPN+ has the rights for Germany's Bundeliga soccer matches starting August 2020.
Luke: Breaking Bad
On the Lookout: Superstore
Hulu Finally Adds Downloads for Offline Mobile Viewing
- Hulu launched the ability to download shows for offline viewing. Users can download up to 25 titles across five devices for up to 30 days. Titles expire two days after playback is started.
If you're on the commercial-free plan you can download the majority of Hulu's catalog using Hulu's iOS app. Hulu says it will bring the function to Android soon. If you have the cheaper plan with commercials you will not get the offline viewing option.
Netflix’s ‘The Irishman’ To Make Month-Long Broadway Stand: Martin Scorsese Film To Play The Belasco
- Netflix's Martin Scorsese film The Irishman will show at the Belasco Theatre on Broadway from November 1 to December 1. It's the first film screening ever at the 112-year-old Belasco. The Irishman launches on Netflix Nov. 27.
Disney is reportedly banning Netflix ads across its entertainment TV networks
- The Wall Street Journal's sources say Disney will not accept advertisement from Netflix on its entertainment TV networks. Non-entertainment networks like ESPN will still accept Netflix ads. Disney told the Verge it reevaluated its strategy "to reflect the comprehensive business relationships we have with many of these companies. It apparently found a mutually beneficial relationship between companies with competing platforms, like Comcast, Amazon and Apple. In Netflix's case it did not. The Wall Street Journal also reports sources tell it Disney may not launch a Disney+ app on the Fire TV because of conflicts over how advertising is handled on the Fire TV platform.
BBC Planning To Reinvent iPlayer & Take Fight To Netflix, Amazon & Apple
- The BBC announced a redesign to its iPlayer service for UK citizens, including more personalization. The redesign will come along with the launch of a longer viewing window for iPlayer content from 30 days to a year.
Twitch is officially available on the Apple TV
- And for fans of watching us and other show live on Twitch, the official Twitch app is now available for Apple TV. Users will be able to live-stream games, view clips on demand and join on-screen chats. Next up, Roku?
Quibi’s Jeffrey Katzenberg, Meg Whitman to Deliver CES 2020 Keynote
- Quibi founder Jeffrey Katzenberg and CEO Meg Whitman will deliver a keynote presentation at CES Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020, at 9:30 a.m. in Park Theater at the Park MGM Hotel. we at Cordkillers are somewhat disappointed that it will not be several 10-minute keynotes strung out over the week.
Dispatches from the Front
Dear Tom, Brian, and Bryce,
I found Tom's "You can't read all the books; you can't watch all the shows" comparison right on the nose. I even handle the two the same. I have a running list of books and shows. When I hear about a new one, I add it to the list, when I finish a book I look at the list and go on to a new one that catches my eye. Books are a little easier. Even though my local library is only a 12,000 sq ft building with 12 staff and 60,934 books on its shelves, I have access to every book in the county-wide system. At the click of a button, it is sent to my branch. If the county library doesn't have it - some library in Texas does, and I can get it through interlibrary loan. That is all free.
So shows take a little more time and money. A while back, Brian offered a challenge - cancel everything and add what you need back. I did that. Now I subscribe one month at a time using Gift Cards (get points for $ off gas) or privacy.com. The service goes away after a month, and even Netflix and Hulu canceled. If I find myself with nothing to watch, I look at my spreadsheet and find the service with the most shows right then and subscribe. I became a cord-cutter around 12 years ago, and my habits have developed since then.
I don't need cable replacement services because I don't need background noise and most of the shows I want are going to be available through the services I use. Honestly, if the show is not going to stream, they probably don't want me to watch it.
On the last episode Robb Dunewood talked about helping his mom cut the cord. I just cut the cord a couple months ago. I have 2 TVs, put a FireTV 4k Stick on each. I put an antenna in my attic for local channels and have the Amazon Fire Recast so I can DVR things on from the antenna and see live TV on the FireTV sticks. It works great and would be a good solution for Robb's Mom. I plan to get the Disney Plus, Hulu, ESPN bundle when that is available.
If you interested here are some numbers regarding the usage of disney+ in the Netherlands .
Here is a link to the dutch article https://www.iculture.nl/nieuws/disney-plus-nederland-8-procent/ I try to list the stats here.
8% of dutch housholds have registered for disney+
15% of the 20's old have subscribed immediatley of the 50-66yr groep only 3% subscrided.
The impression is that it is only 8% currently because at the moment of registration people have to submit a payment method and mnay don't like that. Also people need appropriate players the be able to use it.
Some more stats of lower educated people only 4% have registred of higher educated people 9%. alse 15% of netflix subscribers have registred and are trying disney+
They expect an interesting battle between netflix/disney as of 12 nov 81% of current disney+ subscribers also are netflix subscribers.