Is Channels what I'm looking for?

Greetings All !

I'm just trying to make sense of what I've been reading about Channels. And I thought, perhaps, if I posted a bit about my situation and what I'm looking for, somebody could help clarify for me:

I've been with DirecTV (now owned by AT&T) for several years now. And every few months, I've done the whole "streaming comparison" thing. But that hasn't worked out very well for me, as any cost savings I might gain from going to streaming services to replace DirecTV has been offset by the fact that DirecTV would then raise my Internet plan costs "since I was no longer bundling".

So, here I am again, researching this. And, honestly, I felt like a combination of FuboTV, the Frndly streaming service, and the Uzzu TV streaming service together... might be what we'd want. (Frndly would get me a few extra fishing channels. And my wife is a Kansas City Royals nut, so Uzzu TV would provide that.) We have Firesticks on both of our TV's. So, ideally, that'd be the way we'd get these services transmitted to those TVs.

But that still would leave me with one big problem: Uzzu TV doesn't offer a DVR service.

So, I got to thinking about this yesterday and I said to myself "Why don't I just buy a DVR of my own and use it for everything?" However, Googling on this topic got me confused, as I kept running into info about "Over The Air" DVR-ing. Was this for the purposes of recording local stations? Well, if that's what that's primarily for, I don't care... because I'd be getting our locals from Fubo.

But further Googling brought me to some articles about Channels. And what attracted me most was the idea of a UNIFIED DVR... that would potentially offer ONE MENU system for all three services I'm considering. (This would be FABULOUS, in the way of "Wife Acceptance Factor"! Right now my wife doesn't even understand how to get from watching Amazon TV a la FireTV ... back to watching DirecTV by hitting "Input 1" on the TV's remote. That's too much for her.)

Then I saw the diagram that showed I'd need an HDHomeRun and antenna. Would I really, given my situation? I don't care about bringing in local TV channels. And I would no longer be bringing in data via the DirecTV dish that's attached to the side of my house.

And I guess that's my real question... as well as just generally wanting to confirm that I'm on the right track here: that Channels would be a terrific way of providing a single-menu cloud DVR for any streaming services that I'd normally get through Amazon Fire Stick? (I don't suppose it'd provide a unified menu for when you're actually watching TV too?)

Thank you!

-= Dave =-

As someone who did the same thing with DirecTV - Channels is absolutely for you, assuming Uzzu is 1) legit and 2) offers m3u.

I have my doubts on #1 above.

Assuming Fubo gets you local TVE access to the broadcast channels, you may not need anything for OTA. This is highly location-specific, so worth confirming where you are first, and seeing if the locals are offered via TVE.

You should consider looking at Starlink for internet service. See if they’re offering their early access service in your area.

Also, frndly TV is not enabling TVE yet, so that may be an issue. That being said, FUBO enables Hallmarks, assuming that's why you would be subscribing :slight_smile:

Well, out of all the providers out there, Fubo had the most channels the key ones that we watch on our current Directv package. And I'm afraid I avoid any Hallmark channel like the plague. My wife, however.... :wink:

Frndly was going to be specifically for the two outdoor channels, plus UPTV.

Ugg.. the $500 in initial hardware is a bit off-putting. Maybe in another year. Sounds like they won't be available in my area until late this year anyways. Not sure I want satellite for Internet anyways. TV outages with DirecTV due to rain are infrequent, but annoying. If all Internet went down, well... that'd majorly suck.

Yep - was in same exact situation (including Hallmarks for the Mrs). I ended up going with a hybrid solution of FUBO, OTA, and a very limited Spectrum subscription. This allowed me to get even more channels than i had with DirecTV, and fill in a couple of holes, as well (Spectrum gives us 2 market locals, and i tacked on the Turner channels to make up for FUBO missing them)

I hear ya. Maybe for people living in metro areas where there's competition among broadband ISPs it's economically viable to do separate Internet-only package + streaming service(s). But for those of us in rural-ish areas, where we have only 1 choice for broadband, they price stand-alone Internet so high that it's cheaper to buy an Internet+CATV bundle. That's why I wound up going all-in with Xfinity and getting a (now discontinued) HDHR model that takes a cable-card. Combined with ChannelsDVR and several Fire Sticks throughout the house, I am able to opt-out of cable-box rental and DVR fees.

check carefully, StarLink is available in Poland now and if I'd subscribed in beta period they wouldn't charge me that $500 for equipment. However american price for internet is a no-go here :slight_smile:

Also, if you went away from Directv I assume you still have your cables and mount on top. Remove DTV dish and find yourself normal satelite Dish with proper European dimensions. There is whole thread here about sat-over-ip support, and you can get lot of channels for free from the sky. SAT-IP server can be expensive tough, but good thing is you don't need internet.

Starlink is not your daddy’s satellite internet service. It’s high, bandwidth, low latency, and not as susceptible to weather as legacy geostationary satellite services are. Check out the starlink subreddit and you’ll get an idea of what to expect.

Get an NVIDIA Shield which you can use as a server making your hardware cost $199. If T-Mobile is available in your area they now offer home internet in 5G for I believe it is now $60/month with no contract and so no good reason not to give it a try. Also with T-Mobile they are currently offering $10/month off of Philo making the service $10/month total and are offering $10/month off of YouTube TV (which is still way more expensive). If you do not care about sports Philo gives you a lot. If you want the locals a $79 refurbished HDHomeRun gets the job done with a $5-$10 Channel Master antenna. External storage will run you about $30 for 1TB or $75 for 4TB. Then all you need are streaming devices for your TV's if you do not yet have them. While those cost a bit (I would advise buying while deeply discounted like on Prime Day). The monthly savings should just about pay off your out of pocket in about 3 months time.

I have seen over 300 MBPS down from T-Mobile 5G. Google the reviews of the home internet service and I find people reporting some speed fluctuation but most seem to agree it seems to always stay fast enough for TVE streaming.

I use Fubo and locals from Ota via HDHomerun, but in my market of Piedmont NC Fubo does provide locals. Just know not every Fubo channel streams, i.e Smithsonian. However, the FuboTV app on an Apple 4k TV has multiview which will let you watch 4 channels at the same time and switch between them. Great for sports.

To get multi view with via Apple TV box, is there a certain hardware
version required?

My box is maybe 6/7 years old.

Probably need a newer version. Mine is only a couple of months old. It's the Apple TV 4K 64gb. $199 on Amazon.

You would need the version that has an App Store. If yours doesn’t have one it is indeed very old and won’t let you load any custom apps.