My DirecTV Sign Off

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by argonaut, Jan 21, 2021.

  1. argonaut

    argonaut AllStar

    Dec 16, 2006
    I joined DirecTV in January of 1996. Back then it wasn't just one company. I thought it would be interesting to go through my data and to provide some stats.

    - I have spent $72,288 with DirecTV since that time on DirecTV.
    - I have always had the Premier level package. It has been renamed many times over the years.
    - I bought exactly one PPV movie for in that time. In 2002 the movie Signs. I had a few others gifted to me by DirecTV.
    - Purchased only one PPV fight, Tyson vs Holyfield in 1997.
    - I've had NFL/NBA/MLB packages at some point or another on and off over the years. The Sunday Ticket Red Zone channel made the NFL package very fun. We've pretty much abandoned sports these days as it is too political now.
    - It took me three phone calls and a combined total of two hours on hold to cancel. The last call was pleasant and nice, only took ten minutes. The first two calls were a trainwreck. The last called was the only one based in the US (I asked all of them).
    - The only retention effort made by the CSR was "Is there anything we can do to change you mind?" She also asked why I was leaving.
    - One little story, in 2005 the DVR (it may have been a Tivo, was HD, can't remember), failed to record an F1 race that I really wanted to watch and I called to complain and the CSR was quite rude and I made a comment like "I should just cancel..." or something to that affect. Anyway the next morning my service was turned off. I called back to find out what happened and they restored service and promised to investigate. About a week later a person (I think they were in HR) called back to explain what happened and they said they listened to my call and several other calls from this particular CSR and they ended up firing him over some of the recordings. That was back when they cared about customers.
    - The AT&T website is truly awful. Their customer service is really bad. This was one of the major motivating factors for canceling. AT&T has had a significant negative impact on the quality of service.
    - We really only used a handful of channels. CBS for Big Brother, and Bravo for a bunch of shows for the wife. I think E! for some show as well. A bunch of the news channels like Fox, Fox Business, NewsMax, BBC, OAN. Smithsonian for me. The kids only watch YouTube and Plex.
    - We also pay fox Amazon Prime, Netflix, AppleTV+, HBO Max, Crunchyroll, Funamation. We tried Hulu for about ten seconds. Terrible.
    - Having Plex is not about not paying. Its about not wanting to watch ads, not including channel logos, mid-content screen disrupting ads, and having higher quality bit rates. There is a lot of content region locked as well. 720p content on DirecTV is really outdated and everything should be 1080p.

    I enjoyed the forum over the years. I always liked to see the disaster install photos. The insight some of the DirecTV insiders brought was always interesting too. DirecTV was great fun for a long time. Time to move on. Have fun.
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2021
    Rich, DMRI2006 and 242424 like this.
  2. harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

    Jun 14, 2003
    Salem, OR
    Your decision was well-reasoned.

    I would point out that nobody was holding a gun to your head regarding your subscription level. It sounds like you could have saved a few hundred had you downgraded at some point.
    ericknolls likes this.
  3. argonaut

    argonaut AllStar

    Dec 16, 2006
    Yes. No argument, that I could have saved some money. I tried once to downgrade over chat and they told me I had to call to downgrade from that level. Their tactic worked as I didn't want to have to deal with a person on the phone.

    AT&T would have been better off leaving DirecTV as its own business unit and not spending money on integration. I'm sure that was expensive and ongoing.
  4. GLJones

    GLJones AllStar

    Feb 12, 2008
    I am really close to leaving myself for many of the same reasons. I have AppleTV+, Disney+, HBO-Max (free with AT&T Phone), Netflix, Hulu, CBS and Amazon Prime (free with all the shipping we don't have to pay for.) I can get ABC, CBS and Fox over the air with all the associated sub-channels. NBC is a bit out of range. I was looking at Orby as well as we do watch many of the channels they provide for only $40 a month.
    Frankly, I am just over paying $220+ a month for Premier and DirecTV has gone to hell since AT&T bought them. I also started back when DirecTV went on the air with a Sony SD set-top box and added USSB for movie channels. I don't watch sports but I have had the top packages (-sports) since the beginning. Sadly, we are the very customers they need to retain to survive, but they do everything they can to anger us. They deserve what's happening to them.
  5. whorne

    whorne New Member

    Dec 3, 2011
    Been with DTV since 1996 as well. I will hang around as long as I can keep getting monthly discounts and they have the Sunday Ticket. Now if Sunday Tickets moves in a few years, I will move with it.
  6. harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

    Jun 14, 2003
    Salem, OR
    It seems likely that move will come in 2023 unless something extraordinary happens. Their contract with the NFL ends with the 2022 season and most of the hints dropped by AT&T management have been in the "meh" spirit.

    In November, the US Supreme Court refused to review the class action lawsuit against the NFL and DIRECTV for NFLST pricing so that suit can now move forward. I'd imagine the revenue is seeing a whole new level of slashing given the sad state of commercial establishment subscriptions.
  7. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

    Sep 16, 2006
    I was also a subscriber since the USSB days, first week of service actually. I canceled when AT&T took over, and I hate AT&T with a passion. Comcast was good to me, had great service, great internet, and one cablecard powered all three rooms off a 6 tuner Bolt. Then it happened. They dropped their resolution to 720p and refused to allow me to buy the red zone channel unless I paid an extra $17 a month for their X1 box. So I bit my lip, and slinked back to AT&T. They had just laid fiber in front, and their 1Gb/s service is fantastic. DirecTv passes the resolution along without modification, and I dont have to play wack-a-mole with the streaming services as to which ones are 1080p and which ones actually have Dolby audio, or both, and the channels I want. It is really a nightmare. Most streaming services are stereo only. That is unacceptable to me. HBOMax is free. Got $300 to sign up (which was saved to use for the inflated DirecTv cost the second year). I have the entertainment package, which saves me the RSN fee (I never watch Texas sports teams). Hopefully, by the time my two years is up, one of the streaming services might offer 1080p AND Dolby audio. Tmobile's new service looks promising. I would prefer one that lets me opt OUT of local channels, since I get 40 of them with my antenna and Tivo Premier, so why pay for them?

    Good luck on your next adventure. Post back and let us know how it is going.
  8. whorne

    whorne New Member

    Dec 3, 2011
    I was figuring that something would happen around that time. I will be keeping an eye on how it plays out.
  9. DMRI2006

    DMRI2006 Godfather

    Jun 13, 2006
    'Tis the season for goodbyes. I'd rather not start another thread so I'll just piggyback here and say I'm very much in the same situation (and like the op, member here since 2006).

    We go back to the Primestar days and when they went out of business (and tried to extract an additional 6 months of service out of us, falsely claiming we never shut it off), we were shuttered along to Directv, probably in 96-97 or thereabouts.

    It has served us well, but even with the $70/monthly discount they applied last March, it's now over $100/month for the Xtra package and I don't feel the service is what it used to be. Stagnant programming offerings. The removal of the grandfathered East/West coast network feeds was an issue, since it was one of the reasons we stuck around. They gave us the free Sunday Ticket but I'm fine with paying $10/month for Red Zone Channel. The Providence RI local station offerings have been slightly reduced and started to be littered with 771 errors which I've never seen in 20+ years. The first CSR told me it was an engineering issue on their end; the second tried to schedule a tech install for new receivers which I passed on.

    And has been echoed, the Customer Service has gone south. Instead of getting perks like free whatever for 3-6 months, I keep getting solicits from overseas for "reduced Starz". I get those calls monthly.

    We paid for February but have been trying out the streaming packages. Most (all) of them give you a free trial so it's been interesting checking them out. Even though it's missing one of our RSNs, YoutubeTV is so clean, works great, and the DVR element -- so good it's hard to go back. Yes the 2.0 stereo audio is just "okay" but I don't use this for watching movies and the programming we do watch (news, talk, some Food, assorted sports) doesn't always make great use of surround sound. (If I watched a lot of movies on DirecTV I'd feel differently, but we get enough "dramatic content" on Netflix etc). Tried FuboTV and it's excellent for sports, but is missing more crucial channels for us (Turner/Warner networks especially, PBS, a couple of others). So I'll probably go with YouTubeTV and maybe add one of the cheap services like FrndlyTV for Hallmark channel. That would be under $80/monthly for the two, and a good $20+ less than Directv monthly.

    And if it doesn't work, we have options. We also have Fios for the internet so if it doesn't work out and/or channel selections shift (undoubtedly they will, there's no one-shot service that has it all), we'll go to that. I just know what Fios TV is and it's fine (my folks have it), but I really came to enjoy the flexibility of unlimited, cloud based DVR and being able to take it anywhere.

    I agree, I wish AT&T had handled DirecTV differently, but things are changing very quickly, and the covid thing is making things shift even faster than they would have otherwise. We've really enjoyed the service, and with each passing year of having to make another year of negotiated discounts (which has always been a pain but they've generally treated me well so no complaints), there's been an increasing re-assessment of whether it's time to move on. We've stuck it out, but this time feels different, like the writing is on the wall.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
  10. WestDC

    WestDC Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

    Feb 9, 2008
    I've been around since the sally ride days USSB and I'll turn off the lights after everyone else leaves --Good luck with your choices
  11. JMII

    JMII Legend

    Jan 19, 2008
    South Florida
    I've been around since 97, installed and aimed the dish myself back when the equipment was from RCA (remember them?). I was part of the whole-home beta program too... but we have just about had it with D* constant price increases. Its almost like they are trying to get rid of customers. Just last weekend the drive on my HR44 died and getting a replacement box was easy enough but they immediately mentioned the lack of a protection plan and a $20 shipping charge. My wife told them forget it, we pay enough that if their "leased" equipment fails they should replace for it free.

    Just today AT&T reported losing another 617,000 TV customers in the last quarter, adding to the 3 million that left in 2020. When my contract is up (another year I think) a switch to streaming seems highly likely. I'd love to see D* sold off to some company that cares but given the way companies are ruled by spreadsheets I doubt it.
    DMRI2006 and Rich like this.
  12. tpayne105

    tpayne105 Legend

    Aug 28, 2006
    Interesting thread

    I joined first in 1996 with both USSB and Directv (I had almost forgot about USSB!). I have been with Directv since then with the exception of 4 years. Two of those years I lived in an apartment and could not get a south facing sky and two of those years I thought I would try Verizon (Mistake). I came back in 2014.. I do really like it and am to get a good discount. I have also had the MLB, NFL and NHL packages throughout the years, with the NFL every year.

    Does anyone remember what the subscription rates were back then? And how much the sports packages cost? 25 years ago!
  13. mke

    mke Member

    Sep 8, 2015
    I remember they would carry evrey new channel that came out. Never dropped a channel Dtv was the best provider back then

    Sent from my SM-N986U using Tapatalk
  14. TDK1044

    TDK1044 Godfather

    Apr 8, 2010
    I've been with D* since 96. I've been happy with them for all these years, with very few issues. I think that the next 5 years is going to see a lot of App based programming running in parallel with a conventional guide package. For that reason, I currently have a ROKU stick to allow me to view about 4 apps in addition to the D* offerings. That's expensive. D* made it financially appealing to me by giving me a $45 monthly reduction on my bill for 12 months, so that even with the additional apps, I'm still paying less than I was just to have D*. The reality is though, that going forward I'm going to want to have one box that offers me a guide plus apps. I'm at least a year away from looking for a suitable option in that regard, though.
  15. Mark Holtz

    Mark Holtz New Texan

    Mar 23, 2002
    While I cancelled DirecTV two years ago as part of my move to Texas, I'm going to be a dissenter and state.... it's not all DirecTV's or AT&T's fault, although the basis is well-founded. You also have to blame the program providers for the ever-increasing costs of the programming that gets passed along to us in higher bills. You have to blame the station groups who insist on higher and higher compensation rates for programming that is delivered over the air for free, and now carriage disputes are a fact of life. The pay television services are losing subscribers because of the higher costs of the service combined with a perceived lowered cost vs benefit value. And, there are now more viable and lower-cost alternatives out there through high-speed Internet where available.
    APB101 likes this.
  16. Phil T

    Phil T Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

    Mar 25, 2002
    I left DirecTV in 2017 after 14 years. I have found that the Comcast/Xfinity XG1v4 4K box is the best of all worlds right now. I also have an Apple TV and a Roku. The XG1v4 gives me most of the Apps I need and Comcast announced they are adding HBO Max and Disney + that they were missing.

    The only one still missing is Apple TV+ but I got a survey from them last week asking about Apple TV+ so it may be there soon. My cost with renting the XG1v4 is still lower then my DirecTV bill was and includes my internet service.
  17. pmayo2002

    pmayo2002 AllStar

    Mar 30, 2002
    Been with DTV since 1998 moving from a C-Band system. Remember all of those Hughes boxes and those made by RCA.
    Would also like to be a cord cutter but unfortunately with little internet still need satellite for TV. Maybe once Starlink is available in our area in mid 2021 we can cut the crap.
  18. Microphone

    Microphone AllStar

    Jan 30, 2007

    Felt the exact same way in 2019, went to Comcast where my internet was since 2018 and never have looked back. You really question yourself being a long time customer as was I since the mid 90s's, but there was just too much bad happening, weather related picture problems, cost, with all of a sudden no help (of any kind) from D*. One of the things I miss the most about D* is this board, no kidding. Lot of sharp, helpful, decent people here.
    DMRI2006 likes this.
  19. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

    Dec 28, 2007
    Same (well, until something better comes along). Streaming is too fragmented now. For OTT, you need 2 or 3 different providers to get all your channels. That's 2 or 3 bills, toggling between 2 or 3 services, remembering which channel is where, 2 completely split DVRs each with their own bizarre behaviors, etc.

    I did try TVision a while back and the PQ sucked and it was almost the same price as DTV. Plus, it would have messed up my viewing habits since I'm on the west coast and TVision gives west coast feeds on the cable channels vs. east coast feeds on DirecTV. So all these shows that I would watch at prime time would now shift to late night.

    DirecTV keeps renewing my discounts, and I have a very low TV count, so streaming doesn't save any money and introduces a bunch of hassle.
    Steveknj and WestDC like this.
  20. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

    Jan 30, 2014
    Nashville, TN
    You're literally the perfect candidate for cutting the cord on traditional channel-based cable TV service. Like me, you can get your locals for free OTA, you don't care enough about sports to pay for them, and you have more high-quality entertainment choices available on-demand via various streaming apps than you probably have time to watch. What's keeping you on DTV (or any cable TV service)?

    Just buy an Apple TV 4K ($180) or the new Chromecast with Google TV ($50) for each TV and you'll have a slick device that gives you all the major apps, with support for 4K, Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio, a voice remote, a unified interface for browsing and searching across apps, plus a single watchlist to help you keep track of the series and movies you're watching or plan to watch in the future across all the major apps (except for Netflix, which refuses to cooperate with either Apple or Google's universal content systems).

    You can integrate your free local OTA TV into those devices with an HDHomeRun Connect tuner (2-tuner model new for $100 or used on eBay for around half) plus the excellent Channels app for watching live OTA TV with pause and trickplay ($25 one-time purchase or, if you want OTA DVR service, app is free but service costs $8/mo). Although your local NBC station is out of range, keep in mind that all NBC primetime shows become available on-demand on Hulu and Peacock Premium ($5/mo) the next day. You can stream NBC Nightly News for free in YouTube around 2-3 hrs after it airs.

    As for Orby, it looks like they're going out of business. Website now just says they're not taking any new customers. Just as well for you, though, as you can probably get the same channels they offer as cheap or cheaper via streaming cable TV services like Sling ($35/mo and up), Philo ($20/mo) and/or Frndly TV ($6/mo and up).
    APB101 and itzme like this.

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