Finally, a Skinny Bundle! ‘Don't Watch, Don't Pay' with DISH's New Flex Pack

Discussion in 'General DISH™ Discussion' started by James Long, Aug 4, 2016.

  1. mwdxer

    mwdxer Well-Known Member

    1,978
    213
    Oct 30, 2013
    Seaside Oregon
    Thanks. The Flex Pack is becoming more of an interest to me. I'll check into it a bit later on.
     
  2. WelcomeBackKotter

    WelcomeBackKotter New Member

    14
    0
    Aug 3, 2016
    Belington WV
    My mother switched to the Flex Pack from the Smart Pack and had the discounted Heartland Pack. She's going back to the Smart Pack. The Smart Pack is $36.99 and includes locals plus TV Land and Animal Planet. Flex starts off at $34.99 (no discount because it's part of a combo with the Frontier phone and internet service) and then $10 for locals and $10 for "kids pack" that includes Animal Planet. Heartland is $6 (no discount when part of Flex). Obviously, we have a problem here on cost difference between the two. $54.99 (and more with tax) for Flex vs. $39.99 for Smart Pack and including the $3 for Heartland (discount applies when combined with Smart Pack). $15 difference between the two, and yes, Flex has more channels, but those aren't the greatest channels around (contrary to Dish's "50 most popular channels"). So she will go back to Smart. I've already gone back to the Welcome Pack. Flex may work for some people, but, honestly, the cost is really more than what's necessary if you can accept Welcome or Smart Packs.
     
  3. mwdxer

    mwdxer Well-Known Member

    1,978
    213
    Oct 30, 2013
    Seaside Oregon
    Since Flex Pack does not carry BBC World, without paying another $10, I am leaning against going to it. I will lose TCM in the Welcome Pack, but the $$$ I will save it may be worth it. I figure with Welcome ($20) and Encore's, Movies, & Supers, it will knock me under the $50 and I will not be paying for Sports channels. I spend a lot of my viewing on the Roku these days along with Chriomecast. More and more free channels are available on the Roku now. plus, if I want any more of the cable fare, there are services that offer them.
     
  4. Oct 1, 2016 #224 of 296
    jsk

    jsk Icon

    825
    21
    Dec 27, 2006
    Fallston, MD
    I switched from AT250 to the Flex Pack.

    Before:
    AT250: $89.99
    DVR (722K w/OTA module & Sling): $7.00
    Courtesy discount (I got this by negotiating): -$10.00
    Tax: $0.96
    FCC Fee: $0.03
    TOTAL: $87.98

    After:
    Flex Pack: $34.99
    News Pack: $10.00
    Heartland Pack: $6.00
    Variety Pack: $6.00
    DVR (722K w/OTA module & Sling): $7.00
    Courtesy discount (I got this by negotiating): -$10.00
    Tax: $0.96
    FCC Fee: $0.03
    TOTAL: $64.02

    Netflix: $9.99
    Amazon Prime (w/educational discount): $49.00/year/12=$4.08

    TOTAL (with Dish, Netflix, & Amazon): $78.09 (Savings: $9.89/mo or $118.68/year)

    My wife and I lost a few programs here and there that we watched, but we have Netflix and Amazon, which more than make up for it. Also, we like that we're not paying for locals that we can get OTA (and get guide data and DVR on my 722K), sports programming and kids programming that we don't watch. Also, I'm happy to get BBC WN.
     
  5. Oct 1, 2016 #225 of 296
    Troch2002

    Troch2002 Member

    237
    23
    May 7, 2016
    If you would have just dropped down to Top 200 you would have been
    Down to $77.98.
     
  6. Oct 2, 2016 #226 of 296
    HobbyTalk

    HobbyTalk Hall Of Fame

    1,687
    0
    Jul 14, 2007
    But he wouldn't have Netflix or Amazon Prime.
     
  7. Oct 3, 2016 #227 of 296
    phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    15,521
    453
    Jan 18, 2007
    Northern...
    That's the thing many don't understand. For me there is much "must see TV" on (in alphabetical order) Acorn TV, Amazon Prime, Hulu, and Netflix. Those are channels for content.

    I can't get OTA so I have the Locals Pack. Right now we're watching one show on Fox - "Pitch" - which is available on Hulu, as are the few shows we watch on ABC and NBC. PBS is available for streaming. If I were to add commercial-free CBS All Access to my streaming, I could drop my Locals Pack, which I'm contemplating doing soon. That's five channels which carry some shows that are on our "want to see TV" list.

    Right at this moment the core Flex Pack is giving me shows on FX, AMC, and TVLand that are on our "want to see TV" list. Without the Locals Pack I'm not sure its worth it to me. And there are streaming alternatives.

    But truthfully, commercial-free (in alphabetical order) Acorn TV, Amazon Prime, CBS All Access, Hulu, and Netflix would give me more TV than I can watch. Which raises the question: "Why am I subscribing to Dish?"
     
  8. Oct 3, 2016 #228 of 296
    mwdxer

    mwdxer Well-Known Member

    1,978
    213
    Oct 30, 2013
    Seaside Oregon
    Good question. I am asking myself the same thing, but in my case I get the locals pack, like you, but ones I cannot get here OTA, also the Super Stations. I do like TCM and some of the off the wall movie channels that often run things that aren't on DVD. Dish disappointed me when they added the new VH1/MTV channels only in the Flex Pack and BBC World. We have put up with disputes, lost channels through the years, and our bills keep getting higher, for less programming. I have been with Dish since 1999. I am not a Sports fan but I am stuck paying for zillions of sports channels in AT250, so I can get a few others I want. It would have been nice to have Dish add the new channels in AT250. The Flex Pack to me is not good enough. If I add on everything I might want, I am paying nearly the same as I am now with less channels. Fortunately I also have plenty to watch on the Roku and I am spending more and more time there. If Dish was to add the VH1 channels and BBC World, I probably would AT250, etc. I am waiting until January to see what they might do. If not, I am looking on cutting my bill in half, to Welcome pack, Movies, Encore, and Supers.
     
  9. Oct 3, 2016 #229 of 296
    Troch2002

    Troch2002 Member

    237
    23
    May 7, 2016
    With Netflix and Amazon you will soon find out most of the content doesn't change much.

    We have both of those, and had both for many years.
    While they are a fine addition, Our household certainly couldn't live without some type of subscription to TV service.
    And streaming only depending on your Internet provider could get expensive.
     
  10. Oct 3, 2016 #230 of 296
    mwdxer

    mwdxer Well-Known Member

    1,978
    213
    Oct 30, 2013
    Seaside Oregon
    My son watches Netflix streaming and I get the discs as few old shows are available streaming.
     
  11. Oct 3, 2016 #231 of 296
    phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    15,521
    453
    Jan 18, 2007
    Northern...
    That's true which is why I have the Flex Pack with the Locals Pack. By itself, for us the Flex Pack doesn't provide any "must see TV" and only a few "want to see TV" shows which emphasizes exactly how expensive cable TV channels on the AT### packages are for what you get. But then we won't watch reality show TV and have no need to rewatch scripted shows in syndication which together make up at least 98% of cable TV content hours.

    I haven't yet abandoned Dish though as our redwood trees grow Dish has chosen to abandon this customer of 28 years by not sending out a tech capable of installing three dishes each on 4' or higher mount with the switching equipment needed. Even 10 years ago I could have done the work myself, but I'm too old.

    Which brings me to...

    For us, not really. If my Comcast internet went up 31% tomorrow specifically because I dropped Dish and went to all streaming, I would break even on signal delivery service.

    Paying for a high speed ISP connection today for us has nothing to do with streaming television. We have a long history with technology use and relative to the internet began with CompuServe in the early 1980's with 1200 baud dialup modems.

    In our location today we are fortunate to have Comcast Xfinity high speed internet. We signed up when the long-ago bankrupt Adelphia put in a cross-country distribution cable close to us, long before anyone heard of streaming television.

    Comcast was stuck with our ISP customer business 10 years ago when it acquired Adelphia's bankrupt assets split with Time Warner (and has upgraded the system continually). It was subsequent to that Comcast-Adelphia deal when Netflix went into the streaming business. If we still had never heard of streaming television, we would have internet service. Let me emphasize that at this time the infrastructure delivering streaming TV to our home costs us $0.00/mo for streaming TV - we'd pay for our internet service with or without streaming.

    Because of the Dish Flex Pack at $34.99 and the comparable Sling TV Blue package at $25.00, I can now get a feel for what I'm being charged for the Dish core infrastructure - $10/mo. If I went to all streaming, Comcast could add a 15% usage surcharge of $10 at some point and I'd still break even. But there is more too this.

    To skip commercials I do have to pay Dish a $12/mo DVR service fee which is really for the Dish infrastructure known as the "free" Hopper. And here cost comparability gets complicated. Yes, I have to recognize that a Roku or an Amazon or an Apple TV box or stick costs money. But my buying that Roku is not related to going "all streaming." I bought it to stream commercial-free Amazon and Hulu and Acorn TV content not available on the Dish box (Dish does have a Netflix app but mistakenly didn't hustle out to get the others).

    So I have a Roku box, the cost of which will not go up if I switch to all streaming. Right now, not only could Comcast add a 15% usage surcharge of $10, they could add another $12 and I'd still break even. Simply if my Comcast internet went up $22 tomorrow (a 31% increase) because I went to all streaming, I'd be paying the same as I am now for signal delivery infrastructure costs.

    I'm sure I haven't explained this well, but it's my take on me possibly moving to all streaming today and the implications of possible internet service cost increases because I chose to do so.
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. Oct 3, 2016 #232 of 296
    Tiny

    Tiny Mentor

    119
    15
    Feb 1, 2009
    Why doesn't sling tv have Discovery channel or velocity in a package ?
     
  13. Oct 3, 2016 #233 of 296
    Jaspear

    Jaspear Godfather

    501
    30
    May 16, 2004
    Fortunate indeed. I live in a top 100 metro area (Spokane just makes the list at number 100.) and the best internet service I can get is from a wireless ISP that on a good day tops out at 10MB. Streaming anything is a hit or miss proposition and virtually impossible during prime time. Short of adding a service like NightShift, which downloads Netflix programing during overnight hours, I'm watching OTA, satellite TV or downloading Netflix, Hulu, Amazon or Acorn stuff from less than reputable sources.

    Until that changes and actual broadband make it beyond the city limits, I'm stuck with either moving into town (or near a cross-country internet pipe) ;) or satellite TV. So for me, it's not an issue of going all streaming or not. I'd be happy just to get enough bandwidth to stream.

    As for Flex, I haven't switched yet, but I may very well do it and spend some of the savings on NightShift, especially if they expand to Amazon and Hulu.
     
  14. Oct 3, 2016 #234 of 296
    phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    15,521
    453
    Jan 18, 2007
    Northern...
    As i've noted this morning in the thread Sling TV: traditional television channel internet delivery both the Discovery Channel group and CBS/Showtime are missing from the Sling TV service. Like there were negotiation issues.


    Yes this is IMHO a significant issue for the U.S. True reliable high speed internet should be available where land line phone service generally has been available not just where cable TV has been available.


    While internet TV is not the subject of this thread, I have to note how similar in approach Dish's Flex Pack system is to Dish's owned Sling TV offerings.
     
  15. Oct 4, 2016 #235 of 296
    WelcomeBackKotter

    WelcomeBackKotter New Member

    14
    0
    Aug 3, 2016
    Belington WV
    • I think Flex could be a decent idea. But the $10 per add-on package, and especially with the locals as a $10 add-on, makes the price too high. Dish America isn't bad, but the variety is lacking. And why would TV Land be part of the standard Flex pack and TV Land isn't part of Dish America? And other channels that are standard within Welcome Pack aren't in Dish America. I really don't think Flex is where it should be, although all of these packages are leaving out channels. So, we are FAR, FAR away from the supposed concept of Flex.
     
  16. Oct 4, 2016 #236 of 296
    mwdxer

    mwdxer Well-Known Member

    1,978
    213
    Oct 30, 2013
    Seaside Oregon
    Yes, that is my thought too. For what I would want with the Flex pack with add on's I would be paying close to what I am paying now and getting less channels. Too bad we do not have real ale carte, where we could buy the channels we want.
     
  17. Oct 5, 2016 #237 of 296
    phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    15,521
    453
    Jan 18, 2007
    Northern...
    The block to getting à la carte is not Dish or any other provider. It is the media corporations.

    As you can see in the Dish Corp's Sling TV packages, you can buy the 40+ Channels package for $25 and the All Channels package for $40. That $15 buys you Disney/ABC/ESPN cable channels - nothing else, not even ABC which is in the the $5 Broadcast Extras package. That $15 is the first clear indication of what Disney would charge you.

    My preference would be to buy programming directly from the media companies. Let them compete. If Disney/ABC/ESPN wants to offer you all or nothing for $15-$20 a month, so be it. My guess is that within ten years professional sports wouldn't have half a dozen $1+ million plus player contracts and Disney would have the worlds smallest audience for its shows on Disney, Freeform and ABC.

    In the meantime, imperfect though they be, I'm looking at the Flex Pack and Sling TV's 40+ Channels package as a miracle of sorts. For this change in approach, I'm thankful to Dish and Charlie.
     
  18. Oct 6, 2016 #238 of 296
    mwdxer

    mwdxer Well-Known Member

    1,978
    213
    Oct 30, 2013
    Seaside Oregon
    I do have BBC News streaming on the Roku, so at least I have one form of it. We now have Grit on #217, so another good diginet channel. As much as I do not like paying for a ton of Sports channels I never watch, I may just stay with what I have, AT250, Movies, Supers. Who knows? Maybe the others will end up in AT250 in time. Dish is still the best out there.
     
  19. Oct 6, 2016 #239 of 296
    tcatdbs

    tcatdbs Icon

    645
    8
    Jul 10, 2008
    Got my first full Flex bill, $90, down from $135. All I miss is golf channel. What a deal! Now if dish would add golf to the sports package, I'd pay another $10.

    Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
     
  20. Oct 8, 2016 #240 of 296
    xmguy

    xmguy Active Member

    2,085
    21
    Mar 26, 2008
    Middle, TN
    I like they are adding these subchannels, like Grit. I would love to see the others too. But I will never understand their reasoning behind not adding BBC World News to the At250 package.
     

Share This Page

spam firewall

Advertisements