DirecTV vs. Dish Network

When it comes to choosing satellite TV, you really only have two choices: DirecTV or Dish Network. DirecTV and Dish Network are the top providers of satellite television in the US. They each have something to offer and their pitfalls. Price Dish Network is the cheaper option. It offers the lowest prices, starting at about $30 a month, with promotional rates as low as $15 a month. DirecTV isn’t much higher; packages start at $55 a month, with promotional rates at about $20 a month. If you want premium channels, they cost about the same on either provider. Both companies offer these prices on a two-year contract. The Packages DirecTV and Dish both offer five packages, but DirecTV’s packages include more and better channels. Although the price may be slightly higher, you get more for your money with DirecTV. DirecTV also has the most HD channels and is known as having the best sports programming. In addition, DirecTV offers an On-Demand feature, which gives regular subscribers access to thousands of shows and movies at no extra cost. These can be watched anywhere there’s an internet connection. Dish doesn’t offer On-Demand programming yet, although it does have Dish Anywhere, which lets subscribers watch programming on mobile devices. Dish also offers a limited subscription to Blockbuster @Home, a streaming service like Netflix. Equipment Both companies offer DVR receivers for HD and SD capabilities. Dish has the Hopper, which can record up to eight shows at once and will let you instantly skip commercials. You can use Dish Anywhere to watch your recorded shows on mobile devices. DirecTV’s answer to this is Genie, which can record up to five shows. The Genie also lets you use one HD DVR for televisions in every room in the house. With the ability to skip commercials on recorded shows and a few other features, Dish just barely beats out DirecTV on this one. Customer Service DirecTV and Dish Network both offer standard customer service features, like 24/7 assistance. While Dish lets you contact them via phone, email, chat, and Twitter (DirecTV is just phone and email), DirecTV has a better reputation. Dish is making an effort, but DirecTV is the winner in this category. It’s hard to beat a good reputation for customer service. Conclusion Dish has the lower price and the Hopper. DirecTV has better, more-for-your- money packages and solid customer service. So which is the winner? Well, it depends on your preference. If you don’t mind fewer channels, then you can go with Dish and get the lower price. But if you want certain channels and more variety, then DirecTV is the winner. If skipping commercials instantly on recorded shows is important, then Dish’s Hopper is the way to go. If you are more concerned with getting adequate and friendly customer service, then it goes back to DirecTV. On paper, the score is 2-2, a tie. In reality, one company is going to win in each home, and that decision will have to be made by personal preference.
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