THE GOOD

Impressive selection of DVRs:

DISH Network offers access to a number of high tech DVR options. The most advanced option, called the Hopper has the ability to record up to six live HD channels during primetime, and can connect with as many as four TVs through mini receivers called Joeys. At 2TB, the hard drive on the Hopper is one of largest in the industry. If you love being able to record all of your shows and not have to worry about running out of space, the Hopper is a great choice. DISH provides a range of HD and SD DVRs, all with picture-in-picture capability, a great feature for sports fans looking to keep up on multiple games. With several DVR options to choose from, you're certain to find a solution that meets your needs.

Available in all 50 states:

One of the great benefits of satellite TV is availability. DISH Network is one of few TV providers that is available in all 50 states. Generally speaking, anyone with a clear view of the southern sky should be able to get DISH Network service. Although this can be problematic in some areas, satellite TV can be a particularly good option for those that live in rural communities and don't have access to cable networks.

Competitive pricing on all packages:

DISH Network has several different TV packages that range from $19.99 - $96.99 per month and offer between 40+ - 290+ channels. The entry-level package is one of the most affordable TV packages in the industry. Unlike some major TV providers that can cost $100 or more per month, as you move up to higher end DISH Network packages, the prices offered remain consistently competitive. Whether you're looking for a low-cost entry-level deal, or for a high-end inclusive package, you will likely be satisfied with the options offered by DISH.

TV outside with DISH Tailgater®

The DISH Tailgater® allows you to enjoy the same programming you watch at home through a portable satellite. With the Tailgater®, you'll be able to hook up and watch TV while tailgating in the parking lot of your favorite sports team, while on a camping trip with the family, at a park, on the beach, or during any other outdoor activity. The Tailgater® has a weather resistant cover, and is small and lightweight, so you won't have to worry about lugging around a big system. Like other satellite devices, the Tailgater® requires an unobstructed view of the southern sky in order to receive clear picture. You can also get a pay-as-you-go plan which enables you to only pay for service on a month to month basis, which is great for trips. Whether you're a sports fan grilling in the parking lot, or an RV owner making your way across the country, the Tailgater may be just what you're looking for.

Solid online resources:

The DISH website has several features that help simplify the purchasing process. For example, a comparison tool allows you to clearly see the special offers, as well as the differences between the available channels. After you select a package, you are guided through a Build, Configure, and Checkout process that allows you to enter more specific customer information, and to schedule an installation appointment. DISH Network also provides access to a number of online support guides, to help existing customers with any technical issues that may arise. For those that like to get things done online, DISH helps make it easy.

THE BAD

Contracts require 24-month commitment:

One potential drawback to DISH is that many of their contracts are for 24 months. For those that are looking for a long-term TV solution, this won't be a problem. However, for those that may be a littler averse to lengthy contracts, there are other TV providers on the market that offer access to shorter-term deals. If you cancel your service early, you may be charged a fee, but it will depend on the specific package you selected. Taking the time to understand your contract will help prevent any unexpected fees.

Must have a satellite installed:

In order to get TV service through DISH, you have to have a small satellite dish installed at your residence. The standard dish is fairly small (roughly 18 - 20"), and can usually be installed out of site by a professional DISH technician. Those that live in an apartment building may find installation to be a little more problematic as the dish will have to be installed on a balcony, or in a location approved by the landlord. This is not a factor that will impact all customers, but it is something to be aware of when shopping for TV services.

Service can be impacted by weather:

Perhaps the biggest weakness of satellite TV is that service can be disrupted by inclement weather. Obviously this won't be an issue for all customers, but for those that live in certain states, seasonal conditions like heavy snow or extreme wind may cause reception to be temporarily interrupted. Although these interruptions only occur occasionally, if you live in an area where weather might be problematic, a more traditional cable service may be a better fit.

THE DETAILS

Provider Specs
3D Channels None
Available Channels 330+
HD Channels 200+
Monthly Price $34.99 - $131.99
Number of Packages 7
Service Area Nationwide, AK/HI
States Available 50
Type Satellite
Receiver Specs
Channels Simultaneously Recorded 6
Hours of HD Recording Up to 500
Hours of SD Recording Up to 2,000
Receiver Options 10
Recording Capabilities (hours) Up to 2,000
Storage Capacity 160GB - 2TB

FEATURES

Title
  • Educational The company offers educational channels like the History Channel, National Geographic, Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, and others.

  • Entertainment The company offers entertainment channels like MTV, VH1, CMT, BET, E! Entertainment, Comedy Central, and others.

  • International Programming The company offers foreign-language programming.

  • Kids and Family The company offers channels for kids and family like the Disney Channel, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, and others.

  • League Passes The company offers access to league passes like NBA League Pass, NHL Center Ice, MLS Direct Kick, MLB Strike Zone, and others.

  • Lifestyle The company offers lifestyle channels like BIO, Bravo, The Food Network, HGTV, OWN, and others.

  • Local The company offers local channels like ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, FOX, and others.

  • Movie The company offers movie channels like Encore, The Movie Channel, EPIX, and others.

  • Music The company offers channels that play music.

  • News The company offers news channels like CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, The Weather Channel, C-SPAN, and others.

  • Premium The company offers premium channels like HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, and Starz.

  • Spanish Programming The company offers programming available in Spanish.

  • Specialty Sports The company offers specialty sports channels like the NFL Network, NBA TV, MLB Network, NHL Network, and others.

  • Standard Sports The company offers standard sports channels like the ESPN family of networks, the Golf Channel, regional sports, FUEL TV, Fox Sports, and others.

  • NFL Sunday Ticket The company offers the NFL Sunday Ticket.

  • Cable Programs You can view popular cable programs through On Demand.

  • HD Programs The On Demand service includes HD programs.

  • Movies You can view free movies through On Demand.

  • Pay-Per-View Adult Entertainment Adult entertainment is available through pay-per-view.

  • Pay-Per-View Movies You can view newly released movies for a fee through pay-per-view or On Demand.

  • Pay-Per-View Special Events Pay-per-view special events are available through On Demand.

  • Pay-Per-View Sports Pay-per-view sporting events are available through On Demand.

  • Premium Programs The On Demand service includes series from premium channels that you are subscribed to.

  • Spanish Programs The On Demand service includes Spanish programs.

  • Multi-Room Viewing You can view recorded programs on more than one TV in your home.

  • Parental Controls The receiver allows parents to block material deemed inappropriate.

  • Picture-In-Picture You can watch multiple channels at the same time on your TV.

  • Purchase Controls You can set controls to limit program purchases.

  • Sync to Devices You can sync your recorded programs to your laptop, tablet, or mobile phone and view the programs without being connected to the Internet.

  • View Recorded Programs You can view recorded programs.

  • Advanced Receiver The company offers access to an advanced receiver.

  • DVR The company offers access to a DVR.

  • HD The company offers an HD receiver.

  • HD DVR The company offers access to an HD DVR.

  • Standard The company offers a standard receiver.

  • TiVo The company offers access to TiVo.

  • Extended Recording You can set the receiver to record past the stop time for sports, award shows, and other programs that may run long.

  • Multi-TV Recording You can record programs on multiple TVs throughout the house.

  • Record 200 Hours of SD The receiver allows you to record 200 hours or more of SD programming.

  • Record 70 Hours of HD The receiver allows you to record 70 hours or more of HD programming.

  • Record Entire Series The receiver allows you to record an entire series.

  • Record Live TV The receiver allows you to record live TV.

  • Record More Than Two Programs The receiver allows you to simultaneously record more than two programs.

  • Record New Episodes Only The receiver allows you to record only the new episodes of a given series.

  • Simultaneous Program Recording The receiver allows you to simultaneously record multiple programs.

  • 3D-Compatible The company utilizes technology that is compatible with 3D TVs.

  • HDTV-Compatible The company utilizes technology that is compatible with HDTVs.

  • SDTV-Compatible The company utilizes technology that is compatible with SDTVs.

  • Automatic Payments You can set up your account to automatically make a payment.

  • Manage Subscriptions You can manage your channel subscriptions online.

  • Online Account You can create an online account to view and manage your TV account.

  • Online Payments You can pay your bill online.

  • Pay by Mail You can pay your bill by mail.

  • Payment Preferences You can change your payment preferences through your online account.

  • Phone Payments You can pay your bill by phone.

  • Retail Location Payment You can make a payment at a local retail location.

  • View Transactions You can view a history of transactions on your account online.

  • Customer Service The company has a Viewpoints.com customer review score of 3 out of 5 or higher for customer service.

  • Email/Ticket The company has an email or ticket system dedicated to support.

  • Live Chat You can contact the company for support through live chat.

  • Phone You can contact the company by phone to get support.

  • Social Media You can contact the company with questions through social media websites.

  • High Customer Service Score The company has an average customer service score of 4 out of 5 from reputable customer review websites.

  • High Reliability Score The company has a reliability score of 4 out of 5 from reputable consumer review sites.

  • Installation Window The company has an installation window of 4 hours or less.

  • Professional Installation The company offers a professional installation option.

  • Schedule Online You can schedule an installation time online.

  • Self Installation The company offers a self installation option.

  • Fast Forward Recorded TV The receiver allows you to fast forward recorded TV.

  • iPad/Tablet Remote Your iPad/Tablet interfaces with the receiver and can be used as a remote.

  • Pause Live TV The receiver allows you to pause live TV.

  • Program Management You can schedule, update, or delete recorded programs.

  • Rewind Live TV The receiver allows you to rewind live TV.

  • Advanced Search You can use the guide to conduct an advanced search.

  • Channel Listing You can access a channel listing that details program scheduling.

  • Menu A menu exists to help you navigate the system.

  • Sports Scores The guide provides quick access to sports scores.

  • Authorized Dealers You can sign up for an account in person through an authorized dealer at a retail location.

  • Online You can sign up for an account online.

  • Phone You can sign up for an account by phone.

  • No Credit Check Required The company does not require a credit check in order to obtain an account.

  • No Lengthy Contract Requirements The company offers contract options of one year or less.

  • No Price Increases Monthly rates do not automatically increase at certain intervals (i.e. at the six-month or one-year mark).

  • International Packages The company offers international packages with foreign language channels from around the world.

  • Satellite Radio The company offers access to satellite radio.

  • Spanish Cable Packages The company offers Spanish cable packages.

  • Internet You can bundle TV and Internet services.

  • Phone You can bundle just TV and telephone services.

  • Triple Services You can bundle TV, phone, and Internet services.

  • FAQ The company has a list of answers to frequently asked questions.

  • Forum The company has an interactive forum where users can post questions and answers.

  • Knowledge Base The company has a knowledge base of detailed help articles.

  • User Guide The company has a user guide or training manual.

  • Video Tutorials The company has video tutorials.

  • Android App A native Android App is available.

  • Favorable App Store Reviews The company has a combined 3.5 stars or greater for their iPhone and Android apps.

  • iPhone App A native iPhone App is available.

  • Manage DVR You can schedule, record, or delete programs on your DVR with your mobile phone.

  • On Demand You can access On Demand on your mobile device.

  • Stream Live TV You can stream live TV to your laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

  • Watch Recorded Programs You can use your mobile device to watch programs recorded on your DVR.

  • Bill Pay You can pay your bill through the mobile app.

  • Set Parental Controls You can set parental controls with your mobile phone.

PRICING

Smart Pack

Total Channels: 55+
Introductory Rate: $19.99
Length of Introductory Rate: 12 months
Standard Rate: $34.99/month

America's Top 120

Total Channels: 190+
Introductory Rate: $34.99/month
Length of Introductory Rate: 12 months
Standard Rate: $59.99/month

America's Top 200

Total Channels: 240+
Introductory Rate: $44.99/month
Length of Introductory Rate: 12 months
Standard Rate: $74.99/month

America's Top 250

Total Channels: 290+
Introductory Rate: $49.99/month
Length of Introductory Rate: 12 months
Standard Rate: $84.99/month

America's "Everything" Pak

Total Channels: 330+
Introductory Rate: $96.99/month
Length of Introductory Rate: 12 months
Standard Rate: $131.99/month

* Package details and pricing may vary according to location. See Terms & Conditions

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