Cord cutting: The complete guide

Welcome to the Complete Guide to Cord Cutting! I’ve made this guide available with no ads or sponsors under a pay-what-you-can honor system. If someone shared this page with you, please consider purchasing a copy to support the work that went into creating this resource.

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If you’re a longtime cable or satellite TV subscriber, cutting the cord can be intimidating.

From smart TVs and streaming players to an array of subscription possibilities, there’s a lot to consider before you make the jump. Adding an over-the-air TV antenna to the mix just adds to the potential confusion.

But those choices are also what make cord-cutting great. I’ve been cable TV-free since 2008, and have written about streaming and over-the-air TV for nearly a decade in my weekly TechHive column and Cord Cutter Weekly newsletter. Despite what you may hear from naysayers, cord-cutting is still much cheaper than cable if you do it right.

This in-depth guide will walk through the best ways to cut cable or satellite TV, help you become an expert streamer, and optimize your cord-cutting strategy so you’re saving the most money possible. By the end, I hope you’ll be confident enough to say goodbye to your old TV provider for good—and maybe even help some friends and family members do the same.

Reading this guide for the first time? Start with the basics →

Or, jump to a section below:

Cord cutting basics

Not sure where to start? This guide will answer your questions.

How to pick a live TV service

An overview of cable replacement services and whether you need one.

Choosing a streaming device

An overview of all your options, and whether to stick with a smart TV.

How to shop for home internet

Switching internet providers can yield additional savings.

Thanks for reading!

Got questions about anything you’ve read in this guide? Send me an email, and I’ll do my best to answer. My plan is to tweak and improve this guide over time in response to your feedback and the ever-changing state of TV. In the meantime, make sure you’re subscribed to my Cord Cutter Weekly newsletter for all the latest updates.