Happy Friday Cord Cutters!
Hope you're all doing as well as can be expected.
This week we're talking about alternatives to Amazon for safe and timely electronics shopping.
Also: Q&A on paperclip TV antennas, short cuts, must-see OTA TV, and more.
As always, if you know of someone who might need some insight or help with cutting the cord on cable or satellite, please forward our newsletter, or use the handy share buttons at the top of this email.
OK... now let's get to it!
NEWS: Amazon Shipping Delays Lead Consumers to Seek Alternatives
Once upon a time, items ordered via Amazon Prime would often arrive before the average person could find time to run out to the store.
But as their supply chain suffers under the weight of the COVID-19 pandemic, Amazon has delayed shipments of items deemed non-essential (except for their own streaming products) for up to a month, and won't be accepting new non-essential stock at warehouses after early April.
Since popping down to your local electronics store to browse and chat with the blueshirts isn't advisable, folks looking to buy non-Amazon cord cutting gear for immediate quaran-streaming will need to use one of these alternatives:
- BestBuy.com - The electronics giant is still doing direct-to-home shipping of online orders within a few days or contactless curbside pickup (at select stores) within an hour. They'll even price match any deals on Amazon via online chat!
- Big Box Retailers - Other major retailers such as Walmart and Target have similar delivery and pickup windows to Best Buy.
- Direct Purchase - Many cord cutting and consumer electronics manufacturers like Tablo, Antennas Direct, and Roku are still accepting and offering fast shipping on purchases via their own web stores.
Need advice before you buy? Most manufacturers will still answer questions via social media or email, or for more unbiased opinions ask the good folks at reddit.com/r/cordcutters. You can also send us a note and we may answer your question in an upcoming issue of Cord Cutting This Week!
Q&A: Can I Use a Paperclip as an Antenna?
Send us your most pressing cord cutting questions via email so we can answer them in an upcoming issue.
Today's question comes from Mike who says, "I'm trying to avoid a trip to the store for obvious reasons but I want to watch my local news. Can I try using a paperclip instead of a TV antenna?"
While there's a small chance you could use a piece of metal like a paper clip to receive OTA signals, it's really not a great idea, even in the middle of a pandemic.
Unless you live VERY close to your local towers, you're unlikely to get good reception and depending on the size of the paperclip, you could even damage the port on your TV's tuner.
Many TV antenna manufacturers are still shipping products, and as mentioned above Best Buy is doing curbside pickup, so it's best to do a bit of research and buy a quality antenna online instead.
Have a question about cord cutting that you'd like answered? Send us a note and you may see your question in an upcoming issue of Cord Cutting This Week!
SHORT CUTS: Comparing Pay TV & Cord Cutting, Free Trials & More
Most weeks there's more news than we can cram into this email. Thankfully 'short cuts' delivers the cord-cutting news and deals we didn't have room for, including:
WHAT'S ON: Must-See OTA TV
As always, there's lots great TV coming to you FREE with an antenna this week including:
TV Guide Data may be inaccurate over the coming days and weeks as programming shifts to accommodate changes due to the coronavirus. Please be patient as networks, local broadcasters, and our TV Guide Data provider work together to make adjustments.
- Canadians can check out the new reality show The Wedding Planners - March 27th @ 8:00 p.m. ET on CityTV
- Or the new sci-fi drama Vagrant Queen - March 29th @ 10:00 p.m. on CityTV
- Period drama Call The Midwife returns for season 9 - March 29th @ 8:00 p.m. ET on PBS
- Enjoy the special FOX Presents the iHeart Living Room Concert for America - March 29th @ 9:00 p.m. ET on FOX
- Check out Homefest: James Corden's Late Late Show Special - March 30th @ 10:00 p.m. ET on CBS
- Catch the special David Blaine: The Magic Way - April 1st @ 10:00 p.m. ET on ABC
- The sitcom Man With a Plan returns for season 4 - April 2nd @ 8:30 p.m. ET on CBS/Global
- NCIS' Pauley Perrette returns in the new sitcom Broke - April 2nd @ 9:30 p.m. ET on CBS/Global
Don't forget to regularly check the TV SHOWS > PREMIERING on your Tablo app to find and set new and old favorites to record!
CANADIAN CORNER: TekSavvy Laying Off Staff, Raising Rates
Canadian ISP TekSavvy announced this week they'll be laying off staff and raising rates starting May 1st.
The company is dealing with a double whammy of increased costs due to the COVID-19 outbreak and the ongoing wholesale broadband rate court challenge.
Meanwhile, customers of Bell, Shaw, and Rogers have all postponed planned rate increases.
We hope you enjoyed this edition of Cord Cutting This Week!
If you know someone who may be interested in cutting the cord on cable or satellite, please feel free to forward this newsletter to them or use the handy share buttons at the top of this email. Make sure to ask them to sign up as well!