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Over Half of Cord Cutters Are Missing Out on a Ton of Free Shows & Movies…

get-the-best-tv-reception-with-your-antennaIn what may be a shock to many cord cutters, a recent study from DigitalSmiths, a Tivo-owned research company, shows that you may be missing out on thousands of free shows, movies, sporting events, news programs, and other free over-the-air content.

According to DigitalSmiths’ 2015 fourth quarter survey, 54.5% of cord cutters do not use an antenna to watch free content over the air. Whereas some of these people likely live in areas with poor over-the-air reception, many of them likely live in areas with great over-the-air reception but are not taking advantage of what they could get with an inexpensive antenna.

Many may just not know that they could get a ton of content for free. A survey of Cord Cutters News’ readers shows they average over 30 channels free with an antenna. Many antennas start at $60 or less on Amazon and even some of the most expensive antennas are just $150. The best part is buying an antenna is a onetime expense that will give you free content for many years.

If you would like to find out what free stations you could get with an antenna, check out to see what you should get with an indoor or outdoor antenna.

Do you have an antenna? If so leave us a comment and let other readers know how many stations you pick up for free with your antenna.

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15 Responses to Over Half of Cord Cutters Are Missing Out on a Ton of Free Shows & Movies…

  1. Avatar
    Karen M. March 29, 2016 at 7:49 am #

    I live in the Detroit, MI area and get 46 OTA (Antenna) Channels Free. It’s a simple click on the remote MENU to switch over from my Roku 3 or Firestick. We go back & forth daily and often just leave it on OTA for Local news and other Nationwide Networks (ABC, CBS, NBC etc.). We ‘cut the cord’ in August 2015 and could not be Happier! Love it! They’re continuing to update & adding new channels regularly.

    My Newest Love is “TV Listings – Guide” App. Available in Play Store (unsure about Apple Store, as I have an android). It is the Blue & White Icon w/ tvs in corner. Surprisingly it only has a 3.7 rating, it gets a High 5 Stars from me! Enter your zip code, chose “Broadcast Over the Air” (local cable providers are also listed) ‘your’ Guide will load. Gives standard dates & times (all sub channels included), The Guide also lists which Season And Episode is being aired. Hands down, the Best Channel Guide I have used!

    **Slightly more than available channels in my area, I hope it helps some of you reading. 🙂

    • Avatar
      RGNCAJUN March 30, 2016 at 7:09 am #

      Karen, thank you for the TV guide app. I just downloaded it. It’s great! Now I can see what’s playing on OTA.

  2. Avatar
    Randy Spears March 29, 2016 at 8:02 am #

    I live in Columbus, Ohio and can get around 17 channels depending on the reception. Because of my location (I’m in a little valley), I have to have an attic installed antenna, but I’m guessing most people in Columbus can do very well with an indoor antenna.

    I’ve been a cord cutter for over 3 years and had been in the past for another 3 year period. Having antenna and an OTA DVR allows me to have the best of both worlds.

    We have five Rokus of varying vintages and one Chromecast.

  3. Avatar
    Mark March 29, 2016 at 8:18 am #

    We live in a rural area of Western Massachusetts. We can only pull in about a half dozen channels. Out of those channels we can’t get CBS or NBC, so we are stuck with Comcast for our local channels. Fortunately, it only costs about ten dollars.

  4. Avatar
    Charles March 29, 2016 at 8:20 am #

    I live about 45 miles NW of Charlotte, NC. I can pick up 28 channels. It includes the Big 4 and the sub-channels like MeTV, Comet TV, Grit, and others.

    I use a Tablo & Rokus to get the channels throughout the house and record shows to watch on my time.

    We do not miss cable.

  5. Avatar
    Jim Carter March 29, 2016 at 8:46 am #

    For those too young to remember. The video quality over an antenna is superior to all other delivery methods. I have to assume the folks in the survey don’t follow sports. In our area; the two major college basketball powers are on locals channels for EVERY game.

  6. Avatar
    vulcan195 March 29, 2016 at 10:03 am #

    If you have a live cable line coming into your home … plug that into your TV / Tablo etc – and scan … all OTA channels will be in the Clear … but in strange locations e.g. CBS is at 107.6. The only problem is no program guide will allow you to record shows since the channel numbers are not in the national database.

    • Avatar
      Admin March 29, 2016 at 10:07 am #

      That only works if your cable company has not locked their signal yet. Most cable companies will have it locked by the end of the year.

  7. Avatar
    Kevin March 29, 2016 at 11:23 am #

    Amazing HD picture quality with the antenna.

  8. Avatar
    Doug March 29, 2016 at 11:31 am #

    I’m not missing out on anything. Over-the-air programming is full of commercials, and requires me to sit down at their prescribed day and time, or rely on a DVR. No, thanks. I much prefer my 100% on-demand, 100% commercial-free programming (via HBO Now, Showtime, Netflix, and Hulu).

    There is no reason any show – except for news, sports and awards shows – needs to be presented live.

    • Avatar
      tommyr March 29, 2016 at 12:29 pm #


  9. Avatar
    Thad March 29, 2016 at 12:21 pm #

    Live in eastern NC and I get 38 digital channels with perfect picture clarity. Seems silly to ever go back to paying for cable with this and the amount of other streaming options available. Everyone who has or wants to cut the cord needs to visit to see what channels are available via an antenna where they live. It’s always goot o have options and what you do with that information is up to you.

  10. Avatar
    GaryC March 29, 2016 at 6:35 pm #

    I live in Butler, PA — about 40 miles north of Pittsburgh. I pick up between 50-58 OTA channels (depending on weather conditions). Pittsburgh; Altoona, Pa; Steubenville Ohio; Youngstown, Ohio. We also have a Roku 3 with countless other channels. Been a Cord Cutter for about a year. Wished I had cut cable sooner. We don’t miss cable at all.

  11. Avatar
    Kirk April 4, 2016 at 8:01 pm #

    I live in central Illinois and we get 18 channels with my antenna. I dropped cable last Nov. And have not looked back. My wife was not as thrilled about it as I was, she works nights but I got a master channel dvr, and we have roku’s on all the tv’s and she has discovered PBS World and all the great programming it has. She has adjusted very well and does not feel like she is missing anything. Happy wife!

    • Avatar
      Randy April 5, 2016 at 3:31 pm #

      Your story is a lot like mine. We dropped cable 3 years ago, but it took some convincing on my wife’s side of the equation. It took me almost a year to convince her, but she finally gave in. I don’t think she would go back now.

      We recently spent some time in a hotel with every cable channel imaginable and we were missing our Roku’s. We only miss a few channels and it’s just not worth it. My youngest misses Disney and the Cartoon channel. I miss ESPN. My wife misses a couple channels. We just buy the shows we can’t wait for off of Amazon.

      We started out with a Media PC that I built, but it got flaky and we bought a Channel Master DVR+ and we like it. I don’t think the tuner on the DVR+ is as good as the one I had my PC, though. We have four Rokus and I’m playing with a Chromecast just for fun. It has some utility, but I think I like my Roku’s better.