Luckily, Shopping for Cord Cutters Isn’t Too Hard

There's still time to make a would-be cord cutter very happy this holiday season.

by Chris Brantner
Dec 23 2016, 4:15pm

Image: Chris Brown/Flickr

Time is running out to find the most creative and fun presents for everyone that's on your list. While Black Friday might be over, stores and online websites are still offering great deals and incentives. If you've got anyone into technology, the Internet is filled with some crazy offerings, but the best way to go might be the entertainment route.

From streaming services to devices, here are a few things you won't want to miss for the mobile viewer or the cord cutter on your holiday list.

The Services:

DirecTV Now: This brand new streaming service is offering its mid-level package for $35 (it's normally $60) and it stays $35 for as long as you remain a member. Now will give you access to local channels (minus CBS), AMC, FX, and a slew of other great channels. You can even add HBO for just $5 a month. It's not perfect—we've noticed some bugs and buffering in our tests—but it still represents a good value.

Best of all, if you sign up for three-months, you get a new Apple TV 4 for free. This way you're giving the gift of streaming and the device, all in one.

Sling TV: Sling TV has been around much longer than DirecTV Now, so most of the kinks that still plague DirecTV Now have been worked out. You can choose from three package, the cheapest being $20 a month. This package includes 25 popular channels including AMC, TNT, and other great options.

While Sling has a three-month promotion, like DirecTV Now, for the holidays, if you buy one month of service you can get a free Roku Streaming Stick. And, if you want to offer Sling TV service to someone but don't know where to start or what they have, Sling is offering gift cards, which make a great option, too.

The Equipment:

Roku Premiere+: Premiere+ is one of the newest offerings from Roku, and it's also one of the coolest. In essence, it works the same way the other models of Roku work, but with some subtle and impressive differences. For instance, Premiere+ includes 4K and HDR picture quality (assuming you have a compatible TV), an enhanced remote that you can point anywhere, headphones for private viewing, and the ability to use your cell phone as a mobile companion or remote, as you see fit.

The $100 price tag isn't bad on its own, but it also comes with some perks. For the holidays, buying a Roku means you get 2 free months of CBS All Access, Showtime, and Hulu.

TCL's 55-Inch 4K Roku Smart TV: TCL may not be a familiar brand, but it's offering solid TVs at inexpensive prices. The 55-inch 4K Roku Smart TV is available for around $500. Not only is the size reason alone to buy this TV, the inclusion of the Roku streaming apps definitely sweetens the deal. Not to mention, it makes pairing an antenna with your Roku device a breeze.

Mohu ReLeaf: If you're buying for someone thinking of cutting the cord, help them take that step with the purchase of a digital antenna. The Mohu ReLeaf is not only is a great antenna, but it's also made of recyclable material, adding a sustainable twist to the standard antenna.

The ReLeaf will pick up channels in a 30-mile radius and is compatible with TVs that are HD and 4K. They are currently available for under $50.

Tablo DVR: Over-the-air DVRs are an excellent addition to any cord cutter's home, and Tablo is one of the best. Not only can the Tablo record local channels that you get on your antenna, you can watch your recordings with a variety of apps ranging from Amazon Fire TV to Xbox One. Some might hold out for the Tivo Mavrik, based on the promise of a cloud based DVR, but there's still no release date for it yet.