The Best Ways to Watch Television

If there is one thing we can all (well, cialis okay, mind most of us) agree on, it is likely that “Wow, there is some good TV out there!” What we can’t always agree on is the best method for watching our favorite shows. Long gone are the days when we all had to pile into a room together to fight over which show to watch or whose turn it is to control the remote.

This is true even if you have a cable or satellite television package. Many television providers have embraced the computing and mobile technology age. For example, some New York, Los Angeles and even Houston satellite TV providers now allow subscribers to access content through any device that is easily available — television, phone, tablet, etc.

So! Which device is best for watching your favorite shows and movies?

Mobile Devices

Obviously mobility is the primary advantage that mobile devices like phones and tablets offer to television and movie enthusiasts. Being able to watch whatever you want wherever you want to watch it is pretty great.

In addition to the programming offered to you by your cable or satellite provider, there are dozens of different apps that provide current and past content. Obviously you know about Hulu and Netflix. Now you can also download apps for HBO, CBS, the Showtime Anytime app, the Roku app, etc. And if independent videos and channels are more your style, YouTube’s app is robust and gives you access to the entire YouTube library.

And, in terms of streaming media, mobile devices work best for the Amazon watch instantly and Prime apps, which don’t yet offer automatic advancement to the next episode in a season or movie in a watch list. The apps are also much simpler to navigate on a mobile device than on a Smart TV app or even, sometimes, within Amazon itself.

Desktops/Laptops

The primary advantage that desktop and laptop computers offer over mobile devices like phone and tablets is a bigger screen and, often, better sound. These features are very important for many viewers who would prefer to not have to hold their devices and who like to have some distance between themselves and the screen they are watching.

Another advantage that desktop and laptop computers have is their ability to access any programming at all via native websites (which is often difficult on sites that have been optimized for mobile viewing when viewed via a phone or tablet). For example, why pay for the CBS app or streaming service when you can simply log on to the CBS website and watch current episodes of shows for free? This is also incredibly helpful for networks that might not yet have robust playback features built in to their apps like The Food Network.

Finally, desktop and laptop computers can be used in tandem with larger television sets via bluetooth and wireless interfaces like AppleTV and Chromecast, which allows you to “watch the web on TV” and is great for parties, movie nights, etc.

Traditional Television

New technology is great and we’re ecstatic that so many networks and providers are making it easier than ever to watch media via whatever device is the most convenient. At the same time, however, there is nothing quite like sprawling on your couch to catch up with your favorite shows or having a big group of friends over for a movie night. Trying to rig up a movie night using a laptop and built in projector just isn’t the same thing.

Traditional television also offers better screen quality and sound quality options since these features are so easily customizable. You can have screens as big as your walls or buy projectors to turn your walls into screens. You can hook up surround sound speakers for an immersive experience. You can watch two or even three things at once on the same screen which isn’t yet possible on computing and mobile devices (bless you, picture-in-picture technology).

And, as we already stated, thanks to Chromecast and Apple TV, you can easily access the web via your laptop or desktop. They also make Smart TVs now with many of your favorite media apps built right into them.

Really, the best device for viewing your favorite shows and movies is going to depend on the experience you want to have. If you want to watch Big Bang Theory from bed, watch via your phone or Tablet. If you’re hoping to catch the latest episode but forgot to DVR it, watch it on your computer. If you want to have a TGIT ladies night with your friends, have everybody gather in front of your television set.

So, really — you need all of the devices. That’s what we’re saying. But you’re a techno-buff; you already knew that!

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