We all would like to make the jump from cable television to satellite television but it always comes down to price. What do the companies offer, how much, for how long, and what other strings are attached. It also might be tough to get out of your current agreement with your cable company, but that’s a different subject. If you’re distraught and having customer support issues with television providers, it might be time for you to switch. But do you choose DISH Network or DirecTV? Here is some information about the services, tiers, and pricing.
DISH Network has five different tiers of service: Family, Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Everything. The Family Pack consists of over 55 channels featuring sports, news, and children shows as well as local programming. There are two different Bronze packages, 100 and 100+. The Bronze packages feature over 120 channels and are well-priced package, meeting the needs of all members of a family. The 100+ package includes local sports programming. The Silver pack offers 220 channels including Bravo, MSNBC, SPEED, Animal Planet and more. The Gold package includes the Silver pack tier plus SIRIUS music, Biography, and NFL Network. DISH Network’s top tier, appropriately titled Everything Pack, includes 290 channels plus HBO, ShowTime, Starz, Cinemax, and NBA TV. Excluding the Family pack, one can upgrade with optional HD channels for $10 per month. The lower your level, the fewer HD channels you receive (Bronze gets 55 while Gold and Everything get 80 channels). Pricing is as follows: Family $29.99, Bronze $29.99, Bronze+ $29.99, Silver $37.99, Gold $47.99, Everything $84.99.
As for receivers, there are standard and HD receivers, both with DVR and non-DVR capabilities. Depending on your television watching habits, you might or might be interested in the DVR capability, which will run higher than its standard counterpart (regardless of standard or HD).
DirecTV has three tiers of service. The first is the Family package that starts at $29.99 per month. Features include over 50 all-digital channels, satellite music channels, local programming, and no equipment to buy or startup costs. The middle tier is the Choice package that starts at $29.99 per month. Features include over 150 all-digital channels, satellite music channels, local programming, no equipment to buy or startup costs, and a free HD or DVR receiver (available only online). The Choice extra package is the same except you get 200 channels. There is a Choice Extra + HD DVR package where you get the same features as the normal Choice package but also get a free HD DVR receiver upgrade. The top tier is the Premier package that starts at $83.99 per month. Features include over 265 all-digital channels, satellite music channels, local programming, no equipment to buy or startup costs, and a free HD DVR receiver (available only online). You also receive every premium movie channel: seven HBO channels, twelve Starz channels, nine SHOWTIME channels, and three Cinemax channels. All packages can add optional HD channels for $10 per month.
DirecTV also has the same receiver set-up as DISH Network. Again, depending on your habits, you probably want HD and a DVR in your receiver. That will cost you more than any of the other regular receivers.
Installation of the dishes and receivers usually come free if you are a new customer to either company. Other costs can include extended warranty on products and accessories, which is always a good investment. For the most part, both companies tiers are very similar but so far DISH Network has the leg up on the channels that are available.
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