There are hundreds of ways to consume media, from television and movies to podcasts and internet streaming videos – all of which are fighting for your attention. In the modern era of microtargeting, there are more and more avenues to consume media, and the questions that keep coming forward are what to watch, where to find it, and how much will it cost.

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With all the streaming services available, it’s never been easier to binge the content you want; however, in order to reduce your monthly bills, a few cuts may be required from your media lineup.

What Do You Really Watch?
Before you start cancelling your cable or streaming services, make a list of the networks you actually watch. Once you have completed your media log, review your annual calendar to see if there is anything coming soon that you’ll need all access for (e.g., sports, award-winning network dramas or your favorite reality show).  If nothing comes to mind, it may be time to condense your network package or consider streaming platforms.

Channel Surfing
Streaming platforms, while often cheaper per month, are still media outlets and for them to offer a nearly endless selection of media, they will still rely on the same methods of providing content. Many use revenue from consumers to produce high-quality content and offer new releases while filling their libraries with older productions to keep licensing costs lower.

Share and Save
If you’re in a situation with a roommate, large family or group of friends willing to share entertainment expenses, a great way to reduce your media bills are by splitting the costs or dividing up the platforms to which you subscribe. Most streaming platforms allow multiple users to access a variety of platforms and can be viewed from several devices simultaneously.

Research is Key
If sports are your holdout to cord-cutting, do your research and check into the sports all-access apps. Many allow you to watch live or delayed games and matches from your tv, desktop or mobile device. Before you cancel your cable subscription, though, be sure to do your research and make sure you’re not in a blackout zone for network games or coverage.

Streaming services have plenty of benefits (no more cable fees and no more contracts sound awesome!), but the savings can be outweighed by other downsides such as internet fees, DVR restrictions, buffering and a lack of interesting content to actually watch. There is no ultimate solution for determining which platform to spend your hard-earned cash on, so make sure to research and compare to find the best solution for you and your family.