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DirecTV packages compared: Find the best plan

DirecTV Stream is DirecTV’s attempt to catch up with others in the TV streaming race. It is a live TV streaming service that offers an alternative to cable and satellite TV. You can stream directly from an app without the need for set-top boxes or other hardware. It is convenient, versatile, and more manageable.

Formerly known as AT&T TV, DirecTV rebranded the streaming service to DirecTV Stream in August 2021.

DirecTV Stream cuts out the junk fees associated with cable TV. And at the same time, it retains many of the features that traditional DirecTV and AT&T users enjoy. The streaming service pitches that you’ll get a premium streaming experience when you upgrade from its cable TV service.

The bigger question is whether it’s worth upgrading from DirecTV satellite to streaming? DirecTV Stream has multiple packages ranging from $69.99 to $149.99 per month. First, it’s necessary to look at the DirecTV packages and prices. Here’s a thorough review of the DirecTV channel packages and overall service.

What different packages does DirecTV has?

DirecTV Stream has a four-tiered package plan. The packages differ by the number of channels available and cost.

The four plans are:

  • Entertainment – Entertainment is the entry-level package of DirecTV Stream. It costs $69.99 per month. It gives access to 65+ channels and cloud DVR storage of 20 GB. At almost $70 as a beginner plan, DirecTV Stream isn’t cheap compared to Sling TV or Philo. But DirectTV does offer more channels and superior customer service.
  • Choice – The next upgradable plan is Choice, priced at $89.99. It provides access to 90+ channels, including HBO Max free trial, for one year.
  • Ultimate – The third plan is Ultimate, priced at $104.99 per month and grants access to more channels than Choice.
  • Premier – The most expensive plan of DirecTV Stream costs $139.99 per month. It allows users to stream premium channels like HBO Max and Cinemax.

Here’s a breakdown of the DIRECTV packages and prices:

DirecTV Stream is superior because of the following features that are included with the DirecTV streaming packages:

  • 40,000+ hours of content – Indulge in more than 45,000 hours of high-quality on-demand content. The library keeps getting bigger every year!
  • Access to Regional Sports Network – You get access to nearly all regional sports networks. These are included in Choice and higher packages. But you’d need to check the availability in your ZIP code.
  • Stream up to 20 devices simultaneously – One subscription plan allows you to stream across 20 different devices at one time. But the restriction is that you need to be in the home network. While on the go, you can only watch on a maximum of three devices. 
  • Cloud DVR – Every subscription comes with a cloud-based DVR for recording shows and TV programs. You can store favorite programs on the cloud for 90 days and access them at any time. You can also upgrade the storage space for a nominal fee.
  • Device support – DirecTV offers a branded DirecTV Stream device at a $5 per month fee. But you don’t even need that. You can stream directly from your computer, mobile phone, or on the following supported devices:
    • Amazon Fire TV
    • Apple TV
    • Samsung Smart TV
    • Roku
    • Chromecast

Because of a wide range of choices and flexibility, DirecTV Stream is worth the high cost.

DirecTV Satellite Packages

DirecTV is the no.1 satellite TV service provider in the US due to wide range of channels offered, competitive pricing, and 99% signal reliability. Therefore, it’s worth looking at the plans and pricing of the satellite service.

The packages of DirecTV satellite start at $74.99, a few dollars higher than streaming service packages. But on the other hand, you’re getting 160+ channels. The next package, Choice, costs $79.99 per month for access to 185+ channels. The third and fourth packages are priced at $99.99 and $149.99 per month, respectively. Here’s the cost breakdown:

One potential disadvantage of DirecTV satellite service is that there’s a 24-months agreement period. Canceling the service midway will attract penalty fees of $20 per month for the remaining months. Moreover, the prices go higher in the second year of the agreement.

DirecTV Bundle Packages

DirecTV Stream requires a high-speed, reliable internet connection to work. Streaming HD shows will consume a lot of bandwidth that mobile internet connections cannot provide.

You can use the DirecTV Bundle packages and get both DirecTV and AT&T internet.

The bundle starts at $124.99 per month (excluding taxes) for DirecTV Stream subscribers. You get a fiber-powered internet connection for your home that offers more bandwidth than cable. So you can expect fast speed even at peak hours. The $124.99 per month plan is for the starter Entertainment plan. The cost is included, and you won’t be billed separately for that. The renewal is monthly, and there are no long-term contracts involved.

The DirecTV satellite and AT&T bundle start at $129.99 per month (excluding taxes). It comes with a 24-months contract.

The Best DirecTV Package in Overall

The best DirecTV package depends on what you want to watch. The $69.99 per month Entertainment package is the absolute best from a pricing perspective. It is also the best plan for a basic watching experience. You get access to channels like CBS, CNN, Comedy Central, Animal Planet, Disney Channel, and Discovery Channel.

For sports, news, and lifestyle, Choice is the best streaming plan. With this plan, you can unlock Regional sports channels, ESPNU, Fuse, MLB Network, and NBA TV.

For movies and sports viewers, Ultimate is the ideal package. You get 40+ channels compared to Choice.

Lastly, Premier allows access to premium channels like HBO, CINEMAX, STARZ, and Hallmark Movies and Mysteries.

What is the Cheapest DirecTV Channel Package?

The cheapest DirecTV channel package on DirecTV Stream is the Entertainment package. It costs $69.99 per month and gives you access to 65+ channels. On top of that, you would have to spend money on a high-speed internet connection. 

If you order the DirecTV Stream branded streaming device, it would cost an additional $5 per month over 24-months or $120 upfront, whichever is applicable. In addition, if you need more cloud DVR storage space beyond 20 GB, it would cost $10 per month.

How can I keep my DirecTV bill lowered? 

It’s not uncommon for people to receive an inflated bill from DirecTV. While the company charges no hidden fees, the prices can still go up numerous ways.

It’s important to note that prices are always subject to change. So, DirecTV can increase or decrease the cost of its plan at any stage. So, if you suddenly start getting charged more, contact DirecTV and check if the prices have gone up.

The second reason is the renewal cost. If you’re on DirecTV satellite or cable service, the company starts charging more from the second year onwards. Thankfully, it doesn’t happen with DirecTV Stream, and the price stays constant. However, the internet cost may increase if you’re subscribed to a bundle plan.

The third reason why bills go up is that people sign up for premium channels. If you responded to one of their marketing campaigns, you might have unknowingly subscribed to such channels.

The first step to lowering your DirecTV bill is by reviewing the statements from the past three months. If you find any extra added cost, contact the DirecTV service department and ask them to cancel the associated service. You can also ask for loyalty discounts if you’ve been using their service for over one year. The last resort to lowering your bill is downgrading to a cheaper plan. DirecTV Stream subscribers don’t have to pay anything for this.

How DirecTV Choice and Xtra differs?

DirecTV Choice and Xtra are two standard channel packages offered by DirecTV satellite service. The main difference between the two DirecTV subscription packages is the number of channels available. Xtra is a superior package and offers 45 more channels than Choice. Some of the channels that are not available in Choice but are on Xtra are:

  • Boomerang
  • CBS College Sports
  • Centric
  • DIY Network
  • Documentary Channel
  • Fox Movie Channel
  • Fox Business Network
  • Golf Channel
  • History International
  • National Geographic Channel
  • NBA TV
  • Oxygen
  • WGN America

DirecTV Stream has four plans and each plan attracts a specific group of customers. For example, the Entertainment package is the most popular among students and budget-conscious people. But it’s the Direct Choice that remains the most popular. It offers true value for money with 90+ channels at $89.99 per month.

How do I Change my DirecTV Package?

Changing your DirecTV Stream subscription package is as easy as it gets. It’s even more accessible than the satellite and cable customers.

Here are the steps involved in changing the DirecTV streaming packages:

  • Log in to your DirecTV Stream account, if you haven’t already
  • Go to Account Overview
  • Navigate into the My TV Subscription section
  • Under it, select Manage My Subscription
  • Click on Switch to. Here you can upgrade or downgrade to any of the four packages currently available
  • Select the desired package and click on Submit

The changes will be implemented immediately. However, the pricing will only take effect from the next billing cycle. DirecTV will not refund for partial months.

Conclusion

Many people complain about the high cost of DirecTV Stream. That’s true to some extent, especially when you compare it to its competitors. But it’s well worth it if you’re a sports fan who loves live MLB, NBA, and Golf action. The streaming service is also suitable for movie aficionados who want access to the latest movie premiers. Given the company’s expertise in broadband and internet services, you can get a bundle subscription for all of your entertainment needs. All in all, DirecTV Stream is a service best for viewers in the movie, sports, and lifestyle niche.

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