To find out all about it, I’ve been checking out DirecTV back to front. Now, it’s time to share with you the following information:
- Pros and cons
- A quick look at what DirecTV is
- The plans and pricing
- Channel Lineup
- DirecTV Packages
- Extra channels
- Spanish language channels
- Extra fees
- How to get started
- Customer service
- How it fares vs the competition
AT&T DirecTV Pros and Cons
Before we get into it, let’s look at the best and worst bits of DirecTV:
- Wide range of channels
- Available across the whole of the US
- Discounted price on two months
- No minimum term for DirecTV Stream
- Bundles with AT&T Fiber (this doesn’t save money, but it makes billing easier)
- Satellite available for slow internet areas
- Add-on channels available for tailored packages
- 7-day free trial available for DirecTV Stream
- Expensive compared to the competition
- Satellite demands a long contract
- Quite a few hidden fees
- Streaming price per channel more than satellite and competition
Intro to AT&T DirecTV
AT&T’s DirecTV packages are a great option for those living in more remote locations in the US as a result of its great availability. It’s also great for seniors as it’s really easy to set up.
That being said, DirecTV has something for most people and could be a great option for many US citizens.
DirecTV is AT&T’s TV service and it used to be called U-verse, just in case that’s causing you any confusion.
It’s one of the most widely available services in the US, as it’s available in every state. Not many other TV providers can say that.
You can either stream it or view it with a satellite connection, and it’s one of the only TV services in the US that offers both of these options.
DirecTV Satellite is more expensive but comes with more channels. Plus, it comes with a long two year contract.
On the flipside, DirecTV Stream costs less per month but features less channels. You can sign up for this for as little as one month, and a 7 day free trial is available.
You’ll be able to take either service on the go with you. DirecTV allows you to stream on three devices simultaneously outside of the house with the DirecTV mobile app. You can grab that in the Play Store or the App Store.
Once you’ve selected one of these two options, you’ll need to choose from four tiers of channels: Entertainment, Choice, Ultimate and Premier. As you go through these packages, you’ll get more channels, but you’ll also need to pay more per month.
Let’s find out more about them.
AT&T DirecTV Plans and Pricing
|Plan||Max price per month(Stream/Satellite)||Number of Channels (Stream/Satellite)||What You Get|
|Entertainment||$69.99/$102||75+/165+||All the best basic channels|
|Choice||$89.99/$124||105+/200+||Entertainment plus loads of sports and more|
|Ultimate||$104.99/$154||140+/270+||Choice plus movie channels|
|Premier||$149.99/$209||150+/340+||Everything you could want, including HBO Max, SHOWTIME, STARZ etc.|
These prices are a little high compared to some of the competition, but you do get some great channels with them as we will find out shortly.
By the way, you’ll note that the column reads ‘max pricing’. That’s because there are a couple of deals available at the moment. Let’s check ‘em out:
AT&T DirecTV Deals
Here is some info on AT&T deals.
Stream and Satellite discount for first two months
For every single DirecTV plan, Stream or Satellite, you’ll get a discount for your first couple of months right now.
For all streaming plans, that discount is $20 per month for a total of $40. For satellite plans, it’s a $10 discount per month for a total of $20.
First year cheaper on Satellite
For the entire first year of your two year DirecTV Satellite contract, you’ll pay a lower price. The $10 discount noted above applies to that, then you’ll get the regular reduced rate for the next 10 months before it increases to the price listed in the table for the second year.
Here’s a look at the prices you’ll play throughout your two year contract.
|Plan||Price per month for first two months||Price per month for months 3-12||Price per month for second year|
Sometimes, AT&T offers separate deals for groups of people that could be worth keeping an eye on. Check out these articles to find out more about what you can get if you belong to any of these brackets.
- AT&T deals for teachers
- AT&T deals for students
- AT&T deals for seniors
- AT&T deals for veterans & military personnel
You can find out more about AT&T deals as a whole here.
It should also be noted that none of the prices discussed throughout this section include taxes and fees. You should look into the fees and taxes you’ll have to pay while weighing up your decision. To find out more about the fees from DirecTV, check out this guide.
AT&T DirecTV Channel Lineup
You get a lot of channels with DirecTV, but the actual channels you get depend on the package you go for. Here’s a guide to exactly what comes with what package.
|American Heroes Channel||•||•|
|BBC World News||•||•|
|Big Ten Network||•||•||•|
|Black News Channel||•||•||•||•|
|Cartoon Network East||•||•||•||•|
|CBS Sports Network||•||•|
|CNN En Espanol||•||•||•||•|
|Discovery Family Channel||•||•|
|Disney Channel East||•||•||•||•|
|Fox Business Network||•||•||•||•|
|Fox News Channel||•||•||•||•|
|FOX Sports 1||•||•||•||•|
|FOX Sports 2||•||•|
|FX Movie Channel||•||•|
|Game Show Network||•||•||•|
|Hallmark Movies & Mysteries||•||•|
|HBO 2 East||•|
|HBO Family East||•|
|Heroes & Icons||•||•||•|
|ION East HD||•||•||•||•|
|Nat Geo WILD||•||•|
|SHOWTIME 2 East||•|
|STARZ ENCORE Action||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE Black||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE Classic||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE East||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE Family||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE Suspense||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE West||•||•|
|STARZ ENCORE Westerns||•||•|
|STARZ KIds & Family||•|
|Tennis Channel HD||•||•||•|
|The HISTORY Channel||•||•||•||•|
|The Weather Channel||•||•||•|
Now we know a little more about the channels, here’s a closer look into each of the channels. We’ll find out what each one has to offer, and who each is best for.
- DirecTV Entertainment – Best Budget Option and Best for Seniors
- DirecTV Choice – Best for Sports Fans
- DirecTV Ultimate – Best for Movie Lovers and Families
- DirecTV Premier – Best for Maximum Entertainment
Entertainment is the entry level and includes all the essential channels. You won’t get many sports or movie channels, but you’ll still get a lot of news and other general entertainment.
This is the best option for those on a budget. Because it’s the most affordable, it suits those looking to save a little money with their TV plan.
We also feel it’s a great option for seniors as it’s super simple, affordable and it features plenty of news and entertainment.
If you choose to upgrade from Entertainment to Choice, you’ll get a handful of extra channels. These mainly include sports, but there are some entertainment and news channels thrown in there as well such as The Weather Channel and Science.
This is a great option for those who are happy to stretch their budget slightly for more entertainment. It suits sports fans specifically.
Plus, DirecTV is actually pretty good value considering it’s only a small step up in price from Entertainment.
The third tier, Ultimate, offers a lot more entertainment than Choice and Entertainment. It comes with loads of entertainment channels as well as more news.
The key thing here, however, is that it features loads of movies and kids channels. That makes it a brilliant option for families. But it is quite a big jump in price compared to the bottom two packages.
If you feel like you want the maximum of entertainment, DirecTV Premier is the way to go. It includes all the premium channels plus everything listed in the previous sections.
This top level is the best option for people who want to get as much choice for entertainment as possible, but aren’t particularly budget conscious.
The premium channels you get include the likes of STARZ and HBO. If you were to choose to upgrade to these separately, they’d cost quite a lot. So if you’re looking at Ultimate but want HBO, for example, Premier will make more sense financially.
And we’re about to find out more about that.
AT&T DirecTV Premium Bolt-On Channels
If you like, you can choose to add on some extra channels to your DirecTV package. This is available to all the packages, although Premier includes quite a few of them.
The individual channels you can add on to the packages are as follows:
|Channel||Price per month|
|Hallmark Movies Now||$5.99|
|Lifetime Movie Club||$3.99|
|A&E Crime Central||$4.99|
|UP Faith & Family||$5.99|
If you prefer, you can choose to add on the Movies Extra Pack which represents pretty good value right now. It contains all the following channels for just $5 per month at the time of writing:
Hallmark Drama (Ch. 564)
- Hallmark Movies & Mysteries (Ch. 565)
- HDNet Movies (Ch. 566)
- MGM HD (Ch. 567)
- Sony Movies (Ch. 568)
- Smithsonian Channel (C. 570)
- Crime + Investigation (Ch. 571)
- MTV Live (Ch. 572)
- ShortsTV (Ch. 573)
AT&T DirecTV Spanish Language Channels
All DirecTV plans come with a bunch of Spanish language channels too. If that’s what you’re looking for, you’ll be treated to all of the following:
|Antena 3||Atres Cine||ATRES SERIES||Azteca||BabyTV|
|Bandamax||Canal 22 Intl||Caracol TV||Centroamérica||Cine Estelar|
|Cine Mexicano||Cine Nostalgia||Cinelatino||CNN EN Españ||De Película|
|De Película Clas||Discovery En Es||Discovery Famili||Ecuador TV||Ecuavisa Intl|
|Enlace||ESPN Deportes||Estrella News||Estrella TV||FOROtv|
|FOX Deportes||Galavisión||GolTV||History En Espa||HITN TV|
|Hoga de HGTV||¡HOLA! TV||Meganoticias||MegaTV||Multimedios|
|Nat Geo Mundo||NTN24||Nuestra Tele||Nuestra Vision||ONCE MEXICO|
|Pasiones||Perú Mágico||Sony Cine||SUR Perú||TeleCentro|
|TVE||TyC Sports||UniMás||UNIVERSO||Univision East|
AT&T DirecTV Hidden Fees
As we mentioned previously, DirecTV features quite a few fees and taxes on top of the standard prices we discussed earlier. The main ones to look out for are:
- Streaming device: If you opt for DirecTV Stream, you’ll need a streaming device. AT&T does offer you the chance to rent one for $5 or $10 a month on 24 or 12 month plans respectively. However, we recommend buying a Google Chromecast, Fire Stick or something similar as this will save you some money.
- Satellite activation fee: All DirecTV Satellite fees demand a one time activation fee of $19.95. The good thing is, you won’t have to pay for the setup of your satellite on top of your monthly payments. That’s part of why they’re quite high.
- Late fee: If you miss or are late for a payment, you’ll need to pay a fee of $4.25. We recommend setting up Autopay for this reason. If you don’t use that and paperless billing, you’ll need to pay an extra $5 per month anyway.
- Non-returned satellite equipment fee: If you don’t return all your loaned equipment (namely the DVR box) at the end of your DirecTV Satellite contract, you’ll be charged a fee of $150.
- Early termination fee: If you want to bail out of your DirecTV Satellite contract early, it will cost you a fee of up to $400. It’s $20 for every month left on your contract plus a $15 deactivation fee.
AT&T DirecTV Availability
Amazingly both DirecTV Stream and Satellite are available in every state of the US. The coverage you get may vary from town to town and city to city, but most people will get both options.
Plus, your local channel availability varies based on location as well. You can always check with AT&T to find out what channels are local to you and to check your services.
How to Sign Up for AT&T DirecTV
Chosen your DirecTV package and plan? You can either order your package online, over the phone or in store.
For Satellite plans, you’ll need to book an appointment for the AT&T technician to come to your home and get your dish installed as well as all the cabling that comes with it. Make sure you’re available and that you have 4 hours of your day free.
With DirecTV Stream, things are a little easier. Simply order your package, get your streaming device ready then plug it into your TV with an HDMI cable.
If you have the DirecTV device, you’ll simply be able to log in and go. For third party streaming devices such as Fire Stick, you’ll need to download the DirecTV app and log in through that.
For more information about getting setup with DirecTV, check out this guide.
AT&T DirecTV Customer Service
Need some help with DirecTV or have a few questions before you place your order? It’s easy to reach out to AT&T customer support.
You can either give them a call using the number 800 331 0500 or reach out to them via live chat at this link.
You can also find out more extensive information about AT&T customer service here.
AT&T DirecTV vs the Competition
Our final note before you pull the trigger with your new AT&T DirecTV plan is that it’s worth having a look at the competition first. A lot of providers have great plans, and you might find something that works better for you.
Here’s a look at the top level plans for DirecTV vs the most similarly-priced from the competition to give you an idea of how much they cost.
|Plan||Price per month||Number of Channels||Price per Channel|
|The Most Fios TV||$110||425+||$0.26|
|Hulu & Live TV||$69.99||75+||$0.93|
As you can see, DirecTV is actually quite a bit more expensive than the others. It does have some great channels, but we believe the competition generally offers better value for money.
However, it should be noted that not many of these competitors are able to service the whole country. Verizon’s Fios TV only serves a few states in the East.
So, make sure you check out what’s available in your state before you make your final decision.
People have been wanting to know the following things about DirecTV. You can find out the answers below.
Can I get DirecTV anywhere?
Yes! AT&T’s DirecTV is one of the only TV services that offers its channels to every state in the US.
You might not be able to get both the streaming and the satellite services in the far corner of each state (especially in rural areas), but you’d be unlucky not to have the choice.
What’s the difference between DirecTV and U-verse?
There’s a bit of confusion around these terms but it’s actually quite simple, as they’re almost the same thing.
DirecTV actually used to be called U-verse before it was rebranded a few years ago. You might still see both names being thrown around from time to time, though.
Is there a DirecTV free trial available?
If you’re interested in DirecTV Stream, you can get 7 days to try it out free of charge before you commit to signing up for one month. This option is not available for DirecTV Satellite as it would simply not be practical to set it up for a free trial.
If you are interested in DirecTV Satellite, however, you can always sign up for the streaming trial just to get a feel for what it’s like and what channels are available.
Wrapping Up on AT&T DirecTV
Even though DirecTV isn’t as good value for money as some of the competition, it does have much better availability. So, for a lot of people, you won’t have much of a choice if you’re going for TV.
At the end of the day, DirecTV is still worth it. The quality of the channels is high, and the interface looks good. It’s easy to use, and you can take it on the go with you which is a very valuable feature.
Make sure you take your time considering whether you wish to go down the satellite or the streaming route, and which plan you’re going to go for from the four. Hopefully, with the information in this guide, you’re able to make that decision clearly.
If you’re going to opt for DirecTV Stream, we recommend pairing it with AT&T Fiber. The plans are great value for money, and you can get a bundle deal. A particularly good plan for most people is the 300 Mbps one, and you can check out our guide to that here.