NEW YORK (AP) - The government wants to make it easier for you to buy and use cable boxes from companies other than your cable provider.

NEW YORK (AP) The government wants to make it easier for you to buy and use cable boxes from companies other than your cable provider.

That could help companies like Roku and Apple, which make streaming-TV devices, deliver a cable feed, too.

It could also help lower people's cable bills. The Federal Communications Commission says that 99 percent of cable and satellite TV customers rent boxes from their cable providers, and that the price of cable boxes has nearly tripled since 1994. Meanwhile, prices of common consumer electronics like cellphones, TVs and computers have fallen sharply.

It says the average U.S. household pays $231 a year to rent a cable box.

FCC commissioners will vote on the proposal on Feb. 18. That would kick off a process of writing new rules.