Monday, August 27, 2018

Saving Money with the Insignia Roku 32" LED TV

Just a few viewing options on my Insignia Roku TV.
My television stopped working and couldn't be repaired. It was a sad day that sent me out looking for a replacement. My #1 criteria while looking for a replacement TV was expense. I wanted to spend as little as possible. Fortunately, I found the Insignia Roku 32" LED television.  The out-of-pocket price tag was slightly higher than I wanted to pay but in the long run, I'll continue to have significant savings because I'm refusing to buy cable or dish services at this point in my life. I've had this Insignia TV for almost a month now and I'm loving it. If you are looking to stop making yourself cable-poor, this may be an option that works well for you too.


Insignia 32" Roku LED Television



I window-shopped at several stores, looking to buy a television at $100 or less. Then I found the Insignia Roku 32" LED TV at Best Buy. I thought about it for a bit and asked around.  

With this television, I could continue to watch via antenna (which is my preference, and why I thought I'd get a TV for under $100).

Also, with this television, I could watch my Sling channels and YouTube.

I could also watch Roku, which my son keep telling me to check into.

The official features of the TV are listed as:
  • Roku Smart TV - access to stream 500,000+ movies/television shows.
  • 31.5" screen - measured diagonally from corner to corner.
  • 720p resolution for quality HD images
  • LED tvs perform well in all lighting conditions and provide rich colors.
  • Built-in Roku smart platform (ability to stream from Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, Plus, or choose from 3,000 other streaming channels
  • Two 8w speakers
  • 3 HDMI inputs (cable not included)


I unboxed the TV and attached the legs. I plugged it in and attached my antenna. The television prompted me to connect my Wifi.  I also easily followed those prompts to add my existing Sling TV account, Amazon prime video library, and YouTube channel. 

Because the Roku TV has so many viewing options, I find it slightly cumbersome to remember to toggle from the two menus (the one on the left of the screen that lists things such as: home, My Feed, Search, Settings, and more) to the visual menu on the right that lists such things as: AV, Antenna TV, Netflix, Prime Video, Sling, YouTube, and etc. But that is a mild annoyance, and something I am becoming accustomed to. And an exceedingly small price to pay for a huge amount of free (or nearly free) entertainment.

I gotta tell you, I LOVE watching my YouTube crochet tutorials on the television screen. I could sit all day and watch the DIY channel on Sling. And what fun to watch my Amazon prime movies on a screen bigger than my laptop screen!


Antenna TV


Except for a 2 year (approximately) period of time that I gave cable a second chance - a chance to redeem themselves and a chance they squandered, I have watched television via the channels broadcast over the air. To do this, I use a little antenna that screws in to the back of the TV. Easy peasy and free local channels. 
Sling TV.

This indoor antenna is the new and improved version of the antenna I've used for the past few years. 




Verizon Jetpack



The least expensive internet connection that I have found, and that suits nearly all my needs, is the Jetpack by Verizon. It is a portable, mobile hotspot device that I use at home or when I travel. The "unlimited" data isn't fully unlimited. I do have internet connection for the entire month but if I do a lot of streaming, after a certain point I experience "bandwidth throttling". Which means they set me at slower speeds. It is occasionally annoying but not enough to cause me to purchase one of the other packages.

Unfortunately, my Verizon Jetpack does NOT work while I'm at The Shack. Hopefully, by the time I relocate, Verizon has stepped up and provides service in that area. Otherwise, I'll have to figure something else out. 

I'd hate to make changes since this set-up is working so well. But I have some time to figure it out. 


Sling Tv


Fortunately, Sylvestermouse Cynthia introduced me to Sling via her review Get Rid of Cable TV and Still Have Live Major Network TV with Sling TV in 2015. Since that time, I have been able to watch DIY, Hallmark, FYI, Food Network, Travel, Cooking, Disney, HGTV, and more on my laptop.

I pay a minimal monthly amount ($30) for Sling TV. I could pay less but it is "al carte" television and the channels I chose create the amount I pay. Now, with my Insignia Roku television, I can watch all of those channels on the television screen!

The savings by using Sling TV, other streaming entertainment options, and my Verizon Jetpack is significant (at least to me it is). When the cable company increased my monthly bill, it was approaching $150 a month.  In my current situation, I'm paying $30 a month for Sling TV and the Verizon Jetpack is a part of my phone bill which totals $110 a month. Cutting that cable bill saves my budget approximately $1,800/year. 


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If I were not pinching every penny in order to rebuild The Shack, I would have chosen a better, bigger television. I would have chosen an HDTV. The quality of the picture is so much better.

Our Bev Owens reviewed her purchase, a Samsung MU6300 HDTV.  This would be a great television to own!  I love the colors and clarity of the picture on an HDTV.

5 comments:

  1. I think a lot of us are getting fed up with the extreme expense of cable TV, and it seems to just keep going up. We do watch movies from the Roku channel itself that are free. They have commercials, but that was the way it was when we were kids so it doesn't seem like such a huge deal to us from our generation. I'm so very glad you like Sling TV. I do agree with you that I don't like the toggling and none of it is perfect, but to save $1800 a year or more, I've adjusted. And, I do love my Roku! It makes such a big difference for those of us without cable tv. Since I am already an Amazon Prime member, I find there are enough movies between Amazon, Netflix & Roku, that I am content.

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    1. I had to laugh about your comment about commercial breaks. Not only did I grow up with them, I like a few of them. It gives me a chance to take the dogs out quickly, take a break myself, grab a snack, etc. As long as there aren't too many, I like the breaks!

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  2. Amazing that TV sets today include the ability to access so many cable alternatives for your viewing pleasure. It all sounds great for people who enjoy watching movies as their favorite viewing, or the many areas and DIY feeds on places like YouTube and Sling.

    My problem is that the main things I like to watch on TV are news, weather and BASEBALL. If I could not access at least one game a day, I would be very disappointed. I am a baseball FANatic and a weather nut and NEED those two things for my primary viewing. I seldom watch movies, so really don't need a package that includes mostly movies. TV to me is the regular networks for my favorite weekly shows (NCIS & Grays Anatomy), network nightly news, weather and Baseball. Now, once someone comes up with a feed that includes my hand-picked favorites, I will certainly look into it. Meanwhile, delighted to hear you have found what works best for you for a price you like. I WISH I could get rid of my high-priced cable and still have baseball. :)

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  3. That all sounds terrific, very informative. I've looked a little in the options available for better prices in Canada, and will keep researching that. The monthly bills are horrendous for cable, internet and cell phones. If I lived in the US I would absolutely be using the alternatives you've suggested here.

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  4. I wonder if that would work for us. I'm not sure an antenna would work where we live. We watch mostly news and commentary. Our cable is bundled with our landline and internet. What we really need is a Smart TV that will let us watch what's available on the internet. But I'm still wondering about related privacy issues with a Smart TV.

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