Anyone who's paid attention to the rise of satellite TV over the past decade and a half knows that Directv and Dish Network are strong companies, but considering all of the similarities between the two, it can be extremely difficult to decide which one to get a subscription from. After all, both companies offer many of the same channels, they both offer programming packages of similar sizes, and both have the same great technologies like digital TV and digital video recording (DVR).
When you dig a little bit deeper into the information about the two companies though, you see that there are some pretty substantial differences between what they offer. Perhaps the biggest difference is the fact that, while they both offer High Definition TV channels, Dish Network offers a lot more of them. In many ways, satellite TV is the perfect technology for delivering HDTV to a huge number of people. That's because satellite technology doesn't have the same kind of bandwidth limitations as cable TV technology and it makes programming available over a much larger geographic area than over the air terrestrial TV broadcasting. Because of these technological advantages, you would think that a satellite TV company would be very aggressive when it comes to translating them into a real advantage over the competition- especially when it comes to delivering a data intensive TV format like HDTV. Despite that though, at Direct TV's eleven national HDTV channels, Directv Satellite TV still offers less HDTV programming than many cable TV providers. Dish Network, on the other hand offers thirty one national HDTV channels. This definitely speaks well for how well the company embraces new technology when it comes to serving its customers.
In addition to differences in how both companies offer High Definition Television, there are also many more subtle differences. For example, while both companies offer Locals Package in their programming packages, Direct TV includes them in every programming package, while Dish Network offers them as optional channels. There are numerous advantages to getting local channels over a satellite TV signal rather than over the air. For example, all of the channels will come in with the incredible clarity of picture and sound that are hallmarks of digital TV and impossible with analog TV. A satellite transmission also makes it possible to get local channels in areas where it's impossible to receive over the air transmissions of the same channels- no matter how big the antenna is. While having local channels as part of your satellite TV package is convenient in many ways, it's also nice to have the option of saving a little bit of money either by forgoing them completely or setting up an antenna to get them over the air if you live close enough to the TV station. Therefore, purely in terms of flexibility, being able to subscribe to them separately may be the better choice when it comes to how you get local channels.
Of course there are also differences when it comes to which channels are offered in which programming packages. Because of this it may be possible to get the channels that you want from one satellite TV company more cheaply than you could from the other. For example, if all of the channels that you want are in one programming package from one company, but you'd have to upgrade to a significantly larger programming package in order to get all of the channels that you want from the second company, you'll probably save money by going with the first company. This will even be true if the first company happens to be more expensive overall than the second company. In general though, Dish Network programming packages tend to be smaller and therefore cheaper than the equivalent Direct TV packages.
Either way, you're sure to get great service from either company. It's time to get rid of Cable TV. Switch now.
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