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BillShrink Launches Personalized Search Engine for TV Services
May 26, 2010 (04:05 PM EDT)
Free online search engine takes the hassle out of shopping for cable, satellite and new fiber-to-home offerings
REDWOOD CITY, Calif., May 26 /PRNewswire/ -- BillShrink (www.billshrink.com), the free personalized search engine that compares millions of service options against an individual's unique needs, today announces a new feature that recommends the best choices for TV packages. The TV marketplace offers a complex array of choices. Cable, satellite or fiber? Basic, preferred or premier packages? BillShrink is the first website to help consumers instantly differentiate and choose from more than a billion possible TV package combinations.
BillShrink's TV product is designed to accommodate a variety of entertainment needs. The majority of pay-TV subscribers have multiple TVs with a mix of high-definition and DVR preferences. To complicate matters further, programming preferences can vary widely even within one home -- from sports to movies to news and much more. For instance, a family who wants to watch The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, American Idol and Food Network on its new high-def television faces a dizzying number of TV package choices.
Additionally, cable providers are expected to raise prices this year as the industry responds to falling advertising dollars, competition from satellite and telecoms, and the increased cost of offering HD and on-demand programming. In an effort to help consumers control costs, BillShrink's TV product generates recommendations based on a user's favorite shows and genres.
The recommended packages are ranked objectively by cost and provider. Within each suggested TV package, BillShrink simplifies providers' rates, terms and conditions so people can make apples-to-apples comparisons. BillShrink further shows users exactly how many of their favorite channels are available in HD, separated by provider. The service launches with the top nine cable and satellite providers covering more than 80% of American households.
"BillShrink has identified more than $1.4 billion in savings on everyday bills like credit cards and cell phone plans, but we found that one of the biggest requests from users was a tool that presents simple comparisons of the best TV packages on the market," said Peter Pham, CEO of BillShrink. "This new feature enables people to right size their entertainment services and provides insight into which providers deliver the entertainment they want at a price that's right."
The demand for household televisions continues to be robust amid the trend towards watching TV online. According to Nielsen, the average American home has 2.93 TV sets per household, up from 2.86 in July 2009. This means that there are more televisions than people per home.
The average cable customer pays nearly $1000 a year for TV service. Due to the complexity of TV channel packages, consumers often purchase many more channels than they watch. BillShrink addresses this waste by simplifying complex pricing structures. The new TV vertical brings an increased transparency to opaque billing practices as BillShrink analyzes viewer preferences and then calculates all introductory and promotional rates over one or two years. Users thus receive a clear and accurate picture of the true cost of their TV bills. This marks the sixth vertical launched by BillShrink, which continues to roll out a number of new money-saving services each year.
About BillShrink (www.billshrink.com)
BillShrink is a free, personalized search engine that helps people find the right TV service, cell phone plan, credit card, gas station and more. By sorting through millions of products and services, BillShrink provides unbiased recommendations so users can find exactly what they need at the best price.
In an era when eight out of ten people overpay on their everyday bills and services, BillShrink helps people make smart money-saving choices. Users answer a few simple questions about spending and usage behavior, and in less than a minute, BillShrink presents the best options on the marketplace. In order to provide individualized recommendations, the company searches and simplifies more than a billion cable and satellite packages, 10 million cell phone plan combinations, 300 bank rates, 240 credit cards and 150,000 gas stations. BillShrink then keeps the savings coming by alerting users when a better deal comes along.
BillShrink was listed among the "Top 20 Best Money Websites" by Money Magazine and named one of the "Best Web Sites" by Kiplinger's. The company has been featured in the country's leading news sources including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Consumer Reports, Fortune, The Dr. Oz Show, The Today Show, CNN, ABC and CBS. The company publishes the popular "Shrinkage is Good" blog, which features commentary on the latest economic news and savings tips.