Dan Mancini wrote:I have Directv because:
1) Comcast's customer service was horrible. When I told them I was cancelling my service in favor of Directv, they offered to lower my rate in order to keep my business, then dropped me to a lower package so I lost channels. That was the straw that broke the camel's back. Keep in mind, I worked for about 5 years in call center environments, so I know what kind of tone to take with customer support in order to get results, when to be friendly and when to be assertive. I'm not the kind of customer who screams at the poor sap on the other end of the line or who makes unreasonable demands. I just expect a company to deliver what they promised and whay I'm paying for. They still treated me like dirt.
2) I experienced cable outages that would last a day or more, so the idea of brief outages during rain storms was actually a bonus. And trying to get Comcast to reduce my bill almost every month because of lengthy service outages was a joke.
3) Directv had WGN and I wanted more Cubs games.
Is Directv right for you? Depends. How clear a view of the Southern sky does your house have? That'll definitely affect the frequency and length of weather-related outages. For me, the weather has to be really, really bad for an outage longer than a couple minutes to happen. A long outage at our house is maybe 15 minutes.
Directv does have more HD channels (I have something like 24 channels on the basic HD package; if you buy premiums like HBO, Showtime, Starz, or the NFL or MLB packages, you get even more). My basic HD package includes the local network affiliates, strictly HD channels like HDNet, HDNet Movies, and Universal HD, and lots of standard second-tier cable channels like TBS, TNT, Animal Planet, TLC, Discovery, ESPN, ESPN2, and the Weather Channel. More channels are coming later this month, including Sci Fi, HGTV, MTV, and a others. The infrastructure for that many HD channels doesn't really exist right now (I know because I currently work in a DOCSIS engineering environment), so Directv is doing some sort of signal monkeying in order to deliver that many HD channels. I'm sure a side-by-side comparison between Directv and any major cable company would demonstrate that Directv's HD image is inferior, but I'll be honest: I don't have the capacity to do a side-by-side comparison and the picture on my display looks damned good to my eyes. Some of the channels recently added to the line-up don't look as sharp and the image quality varies from show to show, but I'm almost certain that has to do with the channels' standards and not Directv (I think some of the channels broadcast a mix of HD and SD content; shows that have to be upconverted from SD aren't as sharp). At this point, I'd rather sacrifice a tiny bit of quality for 25 HD channels than have only 8 channels (and have to deal with Comcast's sh*tty customer service).
On price, I don't think you'll find a noticeable difference between Directv and Comcast. Directv's pacakges are cheaper, but you have to pay $5/month for each additional satellite receiver, and (depending on current deals) setup costs can be higher. My Directv package is lower than what I paid for Comcast because I have a deal through BellSouth (or the new AT&T) that bundles phone, Directv, and DSL for a discounted price.
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