August 19, 2014, 6:13 AM —
I almost cut the cord last week. Time Warner Cable sent me an email telling me my "special pricing" deal had expired and my bill was going to jump up $20/month. That was the straw breaking the camel's back, but being a modern nerd my first instinct was to vent my frustration on Twitter. Time Warner Cable replied asking for my account number. Once I'd checked to make sure it was a verified account I gave it to them and two days later a member of their retention team called and offered me a new deal that was actually cheaper than what I'd been paying.
So for now I remain attached to the cable umbilical. I wish I understood the psychology that keeps me feeling to uneasy about cutting that cord. We'll see what happens next year when once again my "special pricing" expires.
(It's also really interesting that it took so little — two tweets — to get a discount of something like $30/month. It just shows you how much TWC wants to keep its customers around, and what a large amount wiggle-room they have to work with.)
Anyway, for those of you smart enough to have overcome your hesitation and cut the cord, here's some news from the Simple.TV people. Simple.TV is a DVR for OTA television. You hook it up to an HD antenna, to your home network and attach a hard drive and you've got a basic DVR. You can watch shows on your TV via a Roku or anywhere in your house via mobile apps. Adding premier service ($60/year or $150 for the lifetime of your Simple.TV) lets you also stream remotely while you're out and about and adds some other convenience features.
New this week is the ability to give Guest passes to five of your friends. These friends can then remotely view the content you have recorded on your Simple.TV DVR from anywhere. How good the experience is will depend on your Internet connection's upload speed and how many of your friends are trying to access at the same time.
Still, it's a pretty nifty feature. I wonder how long it'll take before the same lawyers that went after Aereo start hassling Simple.TV?
In addition to Guest Passes Simple.TV is rolling out a few more minor changes to its apps and website. Checkout this post on Gigaom for all the details.
Do any of my readers use Simple.TV? I'd love to hear what you think of it!
Read more of Peter Smith's TechnoFile blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Peter on Twitter at @pasmith. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.