What is the Difference between Cable TV and Ordinary TV?

Cutting-edge technology is allowing mankind to invent wonders every day. It’s hard to fully understand the specs and functions of all sorts of TVs and their providers. Technological advancement has introduced us to so many options when it comes to entertainment. Users have become picky and want the best for themselves.

If you are not tech-savvy, you might feel bombarded with the unlimited number of technical terminologies that companies throw at you. It’s easy to say those words but to understand what they really mean and offer isn’t as simple sometimes. For instance, I recently called Spectrum pay bill phone number and enquired about the offered channels and how much the plans cost. They are offering over 160 entertainment, news, and sports channels with HD and premium channels.

In this blog post, we will enlighten you about the differences between cable TV and ordinary TV.

Is TV still an Essential Part of Our Lives?

There’s no doubt that we live in the times of streaming services. They have introduced us to the concept of customized entertainment at our preferred time, place, and screen. Millennials and Gen Z are all about streaming. But some of us still love the traditional TV experience.

The good thing that happened after streaming giants took over the world was that the conventional TV providers also strived to their make their services better. They introduced innovative features like DVR, and TV on-demand, making the user experience more enjoyable.

So, it’s safe to say that TV remains to be the center of entertainment in so many houses. And users still want to stick to this amenity.

Cable TV and Ordinary TV – Why Are They Confusing?

Cable TV and ordinary TV are present largely in so many areas across the world. Even in the United States, where we always hear that the number of cord-cutters is on the rise, there are still a lot of users using conventional TV and cable TV.

While so many people sign up for their services and have used them for years, most of them are unaware of the real differences between the two services. To most, they look like one and the same thing. However, we are going to discuss the prime differences between the two and help you decipher them.

A Word about Cable TV and its History

Cable television was invented in the United States around the late 1940s as a commercial venture. By the 1950s, it became widely popular and sought after. Cable TV worked via coaxial cables enabling users to access TV signals from the air in their locations.

During the 1960s. FCC took over the cable TV industry and regulated it. This resulted in the limited availability of the service. It was after 1972, when the FCC became more flexible, that the cable TV industry began to flourish significantly.

Today, customers have access to hundreds of channels, both international and local network affiliates, over cable TV. As of now, we have over a dozen well-established cable TV providers across the country with a massive service coverage area. They are offering TV plans with exciting channel tiers. In short, the cable TV industry is huge now and providers are reaching rural areas now after covering most of the states.

A Word about Ordinary TV and its History

Ordinary TV or broadcast TV operates by sending TV signals via radio waves over the air. It is the oldest TV format. A TV antenna receives the signals through those radio waves. This antenna connects to your TV set and you can access all the media. Primarily, this media is entertainment content utilizing radio and TV to reach the viewers.

To understand how it works, consider having a receiver to get signals broadcasted from local TV stations over radiofrequency. Some popular TV networks utilized radio networks back in the 1930s-1940s. Those were the early days of television. The earliest TV receivers were only able to get not around 12 channels. Generally, they would receive between 2 to 13 channels.

The total number of channels was low because TV antennas were not good enough to transmit strong signals without interrupting other neighboring channels. It was in 1965 when FCC regulations made all-new TV receivers essentially have built-in tuners. As a result, the receivers were able to transmit channels from as low as 14 to as many as 83, which was an improvement!

The Difference

Summing up, the difference between ordinary and cable TV is evident now. The mode of transmitting TV signals in the ordinary TV is radio waves that the receiver catches. While in cable TV, it is a much-advanced delivery system involving coaxial cables.

Furthermore, in ordinary TV, climatic changes affect the performance of the receiving antenna. This results in poor picture quality and channels splitting up. The equipment is designed to only deliver good picture quality when there is little or no interference in the radio signal.

If you compare ordinary TV with cable TV, the latter is a massive improvement. Today, cable TV companies like Xfinity, Wow, and Spectrum offer customized channel tiers with hundreds of HD channels. Some also offer 4K channels, which is the most pristine picture quality available.

Furthermore, they offer cutting-edge features like DVR, on-demand content, and premium channels. All you need is a set-top box and you also don’t have to worry about weather conditions interrupting the picture quality.

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