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No More 2 Year Contracts

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by tds4182, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. CCarncross

    CCarncross Hall Of Fame

    Jul 19, 2005
    For the people that complain enough, they do get handed over new receivers. Looking at your sig, I see you have all the current models.
  2. damondlt

    damondlt New Member

    Feb 27, 2006
    Yep, and I still have a year left of a commitment.

    thats mean Directv going to hand over HR44 and HR24 to replace my 34 and 23??
  3. Beerstalker

    Beerstalker Hall Of Fame

    Feb 9, 2009
    Peoria, IL
    I believe it is Leap Wireless/Cricket.

    People forget the MSRP for the iPhone is really $600 for 16GB, $700 for 32GB and $800 for 64GB I believe. They think that the cost is the $200/300/400 that AT&T and Verizon charge for them. They want the phone for $200 and the service for $50, and that just isn't going to happen. If you want the phone for $200 be ready for $90/month service fees, if you want $50/month service then get ready to pay $600 for the phone.

    As far as people complaining about the lease fees, you need to remember a lot of the time you don't end up paying them. The fees get waived for new customers, they get waived for all you people that call in and beg for a new receiver etc.
  4. Mike Greer

    Mike Greer Hall Of Fame

    Jan 20, 2004
    Salt Lake...
    If the prices were more reasonable I would rather buy than lease personally. I'm sure the crazy prices are just to keep people in the lease model where DirecTV makes the most money. I would rather (and do) install and support my own equipment. Based on past experience I don't need or want a DirecTV 'installer' screwing with my system although the last 'installer' they forced on me was much better than ones in the past.

    It is much more affordable to purchase Dish Network receivers that are 'arguably' more advanced and thus more expensive to build than DirecTV's boxes.

    I guess I can't blame DirecTV for asking such insane prices... It's not like they are hurting because people are not subscribing because the don't like the 'lease' setup.
  5. RAD

    RAD Well-Known Member

    Aug 5, 2002
    When DIRECTV announces their annual price increase there's all the anger at spending another $4 to $6 per month. If that's how the majority of customer feel then I doubt they'd want to spend hundreds of dollars more just to get something that's purchased just to avoid a two year commitment.
  6. fleckrj

    fleckrj Icon

    Sep 4, 2009
    Cary, NC
    I do not think the 2 year committment is that big of a deal. I have been with DirecTV since 1999 and do not have any reason to switch to anyone else. I did switch my phone provider from Sprint to Verizon in 2010, but prior to that, I had been with Sprint for more than 15 years. I also changed my ISP from Earthlink to AT&T in 2011, My committment is up, but I have no reason to switch at this time.

    Maybe I am just odd, but I have been married to the same woman for 40 years, worked for the same company for 35 years, and lived in the same house for 23 years. I am not afraid of committments, and as committments go, 2 years is nothing.
  7. billsharpe

    billsharpe Hall Of Fame

    Jan 25, 2007
    You're certainly not odd. I've got you beat on the marriage number - 57 -- and the same house --41 -- and I've been retired 23 years.

    However, I paid off my ETF when I switched to FiOS over a year ago after my DVR stopped responding reliably to my remote inputs. And yes, I did all the good things suggested on this forum without eliminating the problem. Some commitments are made to be broken.:)

    I also saved more than the $20/month ETF when I switched.
  8. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

    Aug 27, 2010
    PA - Berks...
    But I thought that even if you bought one, you still have to return it if you canceled service? IE) Buying one isn't really buying one - ever since the lease model.

    Lets say you look at a cell phone company and want the latest iPhone. You pay $200 and sign a 2-year agreement. If another iPhone comes up before your almost done with the 2-years (usually around month 20 or so), and you want it badly... you have to pay full retail price. Otherwise every 20-24 months (depending on carrier) you can upgrade your phone and re-up your commitment to get it at the lower price.

    Now if you do that, you never have to turn your old phone in! I've seen people hang onto their old phones, ebay them, sell them on gazelle, give them to a friend or family member, or use them as an ipod touch on wifi.

    Thing is with DirecTV you never own anything, am I right? That cell phone business model just isn't the same when compared to DirecTV. I'm not sure about Dish Network, but I would imagine they are more similar to DirecTV rather than AT&T / Verizon / Sprint / etc...

    Also with cell phones you get a choice. Iphone, Android, Windows Phone, cheap no frills flip phone, etc... With any TV provider your choices are very limited. There isn't a huge app marketplace. The performance of the set top box doesn't even come close to your smartphone (just look at how smooth the UI interacts on your smart phone). You maybe have 2 choices DirecTivo (which is crippled and not even close to Tivo's current Premier technology) or the DirecTV HD UI. Not that DirecTV's UI is bad... just your not going to get a Windows Media Center embedded DVR or a Google TV type fully integrated DVR from DirecTV. You may be able to get Google, Microsoft and Apple products from AT&T... but not from any TV provider - be it cable or satellite.

    Not sure why the TV market never evolved like the mobile market. They even say that in North America we are far behind the European countries in terms of mobile networks and technology.
  9. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

    Nov 15, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    I believe if you actually buy one, you do own it and do not have to return it.

    Someone posted a cost of $499 to own an HD DVR and $299 to own an HD Receiver. I don't know if those are accurate prices or not, but let's assume they are for the following discussion.

    If I start a new or upgraded service with one HD DVR and three HD receivers (4 tv locations total), and have to pay full freight (lease or own), then my starting cost to lease is $496 and my starting cost to own is $1396.

    If one month into my service I cancel, and I started out by leasing, my total cost would be $496 (up front cost to lease) plus $480 (full early termination fee), or a total of $976. If I were to purchase with no commitment my total cost would be $1396.

    If I own the equipment, I could sell it to try and recover some of my cost. I would have to get $420 for the DVR and 3 receivers just to break even cost wise versus the lease model.

    If I go six months, then cancel, my ETF would be $380 rather than $480, so I need to recover $320 selling my equipment. At this rate, it would take me all the way out to month 22 (out of 24) before I break even cost wise owning versus leasing.

    So in reality, you are still better off with the lease model even if you want to/need to cancel before the 24 month contract is up (or 22 months of the 24 month contract). Your actual dollar risk for cancelling is less by leasing than by owning.
  10. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

    Aug 27, 2010
    PA - Berks...
    Well one could also argue that with AT&T wireless for example.

    Cost with contract for an iPhone 5 16GB is $199.99 (lets just say $200).
    Cost off contract for an iPhone 5 16GB is $649.99 (lets just say $650).

    The difference here is either way you own the device (on or off contract). So even after paying an ETF to AT&T if you do not fullfill your contract... you can still use the iPhone 5 as an iPod touch, give it to someone else, sell it, etc...

    If you pay the $200 and cancel at month 6... AT&T isn't going to ask for the phone back. They just take the ETF money. That is the difference here.
  11. goinsleeper

    goinsleeper Godfather

    May 22, 2012
    If you own the receiver(s), they are not returned to D* when you end your service.

    You are comparing two completely different markets. D* manufactures it's own equipment(with the help of external companies) as apposed to cell phone providers selling you another manufacturer's product. Many different companies create smart phones to compete with one another. Also, the technology for smart phone is rapidly changing unlike television service which causes more devices to be created. Television is based on watching channels versus smart phones which are aimed at interactive applications with the device. I agree that receivers could have more features but that's not their intent as you can see the Game Lounge has now ended. Also, the churn on mobile devices is much higher than that of receivers which results in more products and lower prices.

    You only have one primary choice with television receivers; you are watching television. They have other features but end result is deliverying programming.
  12. wmb

    wmb Godfather

    Dec 17, 2008
    WalMart/Straight Talk offers a "plan" where you get one of their credit cards, and pay $75 per month for two years without interest. The iPhone5 lists for ~$650 (same price as at the Apple store), and the plan costs $45 per month. They sell 3, 6 and 12 month plans at a discount - I think $450 for a 12 month plan.

    The Straight Talk plan is unlimited voice/text/data.

    The phone are not carrier locked.

    Given the difference in phone price of $450, and the price difference per month (about $45 per month), the payback period is about 10 months.

    Given the price structure, it would be hard to pass on this offer.
  13. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

    Aug 27, 2010
    PA - Berks...
    Right, but I still think the TV market could take a lesson from the mobile market. More equipment choice, more powerful multi-core ARM based set tops, more flexibility. You want a Microsoft mediaroom based platform? Fine. Google TV? Sure. TiVo Premiere Q with multi-room? check. Moxi crossbar style UI? Why not. DirecTV genie? You got it. Apple designed DVR? Yes!

    Phones have standards. They are quad band or pentaband, 4G, LTE, SIM card for subscriber identification and security, etc. TV could have standardized more broadly but no one made it happen.

    I love how we have so much choice in the mobile market. Heck there are even tweaks like alternate firmwares, jailbreaking and other huge communities devoted to getting the most of your device. It would be so cool if the same kind of thing existed in the TV world. THAT would make purchasing equipment really take off. Your android fanboys would pick their android based DVR, and the Apple fanboys salivate on upgrading to the newest Apple TV DVR every other year.

    Some worry about support, like how would the provider support all of these different platforms? Nonsense... AT&T does it and 99% of the time user based support is through the manufacturer like Apple. I think they are just scared of becoming a "dumb pipe" and losing revenue to Google, Microsoft, TiVo, or Apple. Funny though, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon don't mind.
  14. JoeTheDragon

    JoeTheDragon Hall Of Fame

    Jul 21, 2008
    will need different tuners and cards.

    At least you have cable cards and access cards for sat. The IP systems don't have cards like that.
  15. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

    Aug 27, 2010
    PA - Berks...
    Well IP based TV could just use digital certificates and a combination of other authentication methods.
  16. goinsleeper

    goinsleeper Godfather

    May 22, 2012
    Why? I use my receiver to reocord and watch my shows. I use my smart phone to do dozens of different tasks. What would be the cost and effort to offer these other devices and the special costs that come along with using said devices. There is a very limited market for your suggestion and I have a feeling no one would make any money.

    Receivers have standards as well. They are single, dual or penta tuner. They are HD, DVR, HD DVR, and use access cards. Some people think a cell/smart phone should just be a phone and nothing else. On the other hand, some people think receivers should be much, much more than a device to show programming.

    The choices from the mobile market is based on who makes the phone and who markets the phone. How many companies use the Android platform? Not just one single company. This causes the firmware/software to be open-source so third parties can also create programs and applications for it. They actually rely(partly) on external sources. Google has even offered to buy out or higher outside sources that have created excellent programs for their OS. If D* was open-source, programming would be quickly stolen... again.
  17. wingrider01

    wingrider01 Hall Of Fame

    Sep 9, 2005
    Virgin also -



    Only one price listed on their iphones, while not full retail, still not the 199.00 for 8gb phone, according to the financials, they are about 80 percent below the required total units sold by the contract agreement with Apple
  18. wingrider01

    wingrider01 Hall Of Fame

    Sep 9, 2005
    Don;t know about you but for some people coming up with 650.00 just for the device would be kind of difficult
  19. bobcamp1

    bobcamp1 Icon

    Nov 8, 2007
    Even better, unlocked Nexus 4 16 GB for $350 + $30/month unlimited data & text + 1000 talk minutes from T-Mobile. No contract. That phone can be switched to another GSM provider at any time.

    D* (and everyone else in the cable industry) intentionally sets their purchase prices sky high to make them cost prohibitive to buy. They need the tax write off that the depreciation of their boxes gives them. It also allows them to reduce the number of boxes they have to produce. You can't even buy the Genie, which is the box they are currently advertising.

    Even the initial installation has a one-year contract with ETF to help reduce the cost of the dish and installation, which you are buying.

    Two year commitments with ETFs don't scare me as long as things are working. The problem is when things aren't working. If you don't fight it, you're paying them an additional good chunk of money for their problems whether it's truck rolls, an ETF, or a monthly payment and learning to live with inferior service. If you fight it, it's a very long fight.
  20. Brubear

    Brubear Legend

    Nov 13, 2008

    I don't where you are getting your numbers but they aren't accurate

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