Cable vs Satellite TV

When shopping for a cable or satellite provider, most people start off by looking at price.  While what you pay is certainly an important consideration, especially in this economy, it is a good idea to consider a few additional factors before making your choice.  Factors such as bundling options and high definition are high on the list for many consumers today.

With satellite TV companies like Direct TV and Dish Network, your packaging options can be a bit limited.  These companies offer video service only, so you can’t sign up for a triple play bundle through the satellite television company on its own.  Direct TV has made agreements with local phone companies like Qwest and Verizon so that you can get high speed internet and DSL through the telecom provider.   Dish Network used to partner with AT&T, but that deal has ended.  On the other hand, cable TV companies like Cox communications are able to offer all three services through their coaxial cable.   This makes it easier on the customer in that they can deal with one company for billing and service issues.

Satellite TV does have an advantage over cable in most cases when it comes to HD content.  Both Dish Network and Direct TV have upwards of 130 hi definition channels, a number that most cable companies don’t come close to.  Generally, you will get more HD content in big cities with cable, as they upgrade highly populated areas before they reach rural areas.  While the cable vs satellite debate is still being decided, new options are becoming available in many areas.  Those options include fiber TV from Verizon with their FiOS product, and AT&T U-verse which also delivers cable channels through existing phone lines.  Overall, more competition will hopefully continue to keep a lid on prices for customers in these areas.

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