How Phantom Fees Finally Drove Me Away From DirecTV

How Phantom Fees Finally Drove Me Away From DirecTV

Think you don’t need to check over your bills because they’re on auto-pay or you’ve had the accounts for years? Think again! Looking at his DirecTV bill, Warren found two phantom charges that he knew shouldn’t have been there. He had a $10 fee for the high definition signal waived long ago, but it reappeared on his bill. He also had a charge for the privilege of having digital video recorders, on top of the rental charges for the DVRs themselves. He concluded that fighting the fees wasn’t a good use of his time, but finding a new cable provider certainly would be. [More]

(KPHO.com)

It Should Go Without Saying: Do Not Install Satellite TV Dishes Near Beehives

We are big advocates for safety here at Consumerist, and that goes not only for the everyday consumer, but also the workers on the job providing services for others. And while one might not think this warning needs to be voiced, we’ll say it anyway: Do not install satellite TV equipment (or really, anything) near a beehive without first making sure it’s empty. You never know when you’re going to anger the little buggers. [More]

Are We Over Pay TV? DirecTV Lost Subscribers For The First Time Ever

Are We Over Pay TV? DirecTV Lost Subscribers For The First Time Ever

Have you been staring sullenly at your cable or satellite bill, wishing you maybe didn’t have to pay so much for TV anymore? Seems some customers are getting turned off pay-TV services, as DirecTV says it’s finally losing subscribers for the first time, with a downturn of 52,000 customers between April and June. It added 26,000 customers in the same time frame last year, which is the toughest time of the season for luring in new customers. [More]

It Took Dish Network Months To Figure Out Their HDMI Cables Are Crap

It Took Dish Network Months To Figure Out Their HDMI Cables Are Crap

Don is a relatively new Dish Network customer, and he’s annoyed. Not because he’s lost his favorite channels in a carriage fee dispute, or his rates are higher than indicated. No, his problem is a little stranger than that. Pausing or fast-forwarding any programming would make his TV’s audio go out. He describes “dozens” of calls to Dish and quite a few service calls, replacing the DVR, the Dish-supplied cables…everything. The issue went all the way up to Executive Escalations. After all of this effort and nonsense explanations that solved nothing, one tech happened to hook up component cables instead of HDMI. Hey, look at that–the audio didn’t drop out anymore! The tradeoff for this, however, is no more high-definition programming. [More]

DirecTV Dispute Keeps Viewers From Watching NFL Playoffs

DirecTV Dispute Keeps Viewers From Watching NFL Playoffs

Miami Dolphins fans are used to their team missing the playoffs, but they’re usually still allowed to watch other teams play out the postseason on DirecTV. That wasn’t the case this weekend, though, because a carriage dispute between the satellite provider and the owner of Miami’s Fox affiliate caused the channel to black out throughout the weekend. Two NFL playoff games were the highest-profile casualties of the tiff. [More]

DirecTV Theatens To Boot Fox Cable Channels Over Contract Dispute

DirecTV Theatens To Boot Fox Cable Channels Over Contract Dispute

The beauty of signing up subscribers to two-year contracts is you can threaten networks to yank their channels off the air without worrying about anyone canceling their service. Engaged in contact negotiations with DirecTV, Fox says the satellite provider has rejected its latest offer and threatened to pull its programming off the service Nov. 1 if Fox doesn’t accept its terms. [More]

Dish Hard-Sells Customers At Blockbusters

Dish Hard-Sells Customers At Blockbusters

Dish Network is making use of its new toy, Blockbuster, by coaxing customers at the rental stores into a lounge in an attempt to sign them up for service. Those who sit through the pitch receive a free month of Blockbuster By Mail and a free game or movie rental that day. [More]

Satellite Failure Knocks Out Dish's HD Channels Nationwide

Satellite Failure Knocks Out Dish's HD Channels Nationwide

A satellite system malfunction forced Dish Network customers to go without HD programming Tuesday night, forcing those affected to suffer the indignity of having to watch Sons of Anarchy in standard definition. The problem affected satellite location 129, which includes many HD channels, such as Comedy Central, FX, Cartoon Network and ESPN 2, and was expected to be fixed this morning. [More]

DirecTV Customers Finally Get AMC In HD

DirecTV Customers Finally Get AMC In HD

DirecTV customers have never seen Don Draper commit sexual harassment or Walter White brew up a batch of meth in HD, but that’s finally about to change. The satellite provider will finally offer AMC in high-definition Sept. 9. [More]

Meet The Tailgater, Dish Network's Portable Receiver

Meet The Tailgater, Dish Network's Portable Receiver

It will now take more than an hulking grill and cooler stocked with booze to turn heads at tailgate parties. A massive HDTV pumping out pregame chatter via Dish Network’s Tailgater portable satellite receiver may be so enticing that it delays passers-by from setting foot inside the stadium. [More]

Report: Record Number Of Cable Customers Cutting The Cord

Report: Record Number Of Cable Customers Cutting The Cord

Hear that snipping sound? No, it’s not squirrels nipping at your FiOS cord. It’s a record number of Americans cutting ties with their cable and satellite providers. [More]

DirecTV Says It's Filling Hotels With Germ-Resistant Remotes

DirecTV Says It's Filling Hotels With Germ-Resistant Remotes

Stuff in hotel rooms isn’t known for being particularly sanitary, and remote controls everywhere are known to be disgusting germ repositories, but DirecTV is out to stock hotel rooms with clean, anti-microbial remotes. [More]

DirecTV To Offer Receiver-Free Service Later This Year

DirecTV To Offer Receiver-Free Service Later This Year

DirecTV is field-testing technology that frees TVs from the need to hook up to receiver boxes. New RVU servers, available in October, will allow viewers to let compatible TVs in their homes share central servers that access the same programming and recorded shows. [More]

Make Sure You Really Want Dish Network Before Signing A Contract

Make Sure You Really Want Dish Network Before Signing A Contract

If you order Dish Network, make sure that you really, really want Dish Network. Or you could end up like Tony, who signed up for the service, realized it wasn’t for him, and now has to pay a $450 early termination fee, in addition to subscription fees and shipping the boxes back. [More]

Dish Network Ignores Own Policy, Imposes Weird Restrictions On Cricket World Cup

Dish Network Ignores Own Policy, Imposes Weird Restrictions On Cricket World Cup

Satellite and cable TV DVRss and cable boxes that let you share content throughout your house are pretty impressive technology, aren’t they? Bobby was under the impression that his Dish Network system let him share programming throughout his house. It was only after he spent $129 for a pay-per-view sports event (the ICC Cricket World Cup) that he discovered he couldn’t watch the matches on his secondary receiver without shelling out more money. [More]

Dish To Spend $1 Billion On Bankrupt Satellite Company

Dish To Spend $1 Billion On Bankrupt Satellite Company

Have you ever seen something so cool you’d spend a billion dollars on it? Dish Network has, so it’s pulling a $1 billion bill out of its wallet to buy DBSD North America Inc., which has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. [More]

DirecTV Installer: Oh, Most People Don't Notice Our Stealth Warranty

DirecTV Installer: Oh, Most People Don't Notice Our Stealth Warranty

Was it an error, or a sneaky upsell tactic? When Brandon’s grandfather moved, taking his DirecTV service along with him, he declined an extended warranty. The final paperwork for the installation included the unwanted warranty, however. When Brandon pointed this out, the installer noted that most people don’t notice this stealth warranty. Oh, yeah? Brandon declined again–so, of course, the warranty showed up on the next bill. [More]

Dish Gives Prospective Customers Preview Of Its Stellar Service

Dish Gives Prospective Customers Preview Of Its Stellar Service

Mystern encountered this error message, which reads “Acquiring satellite signal,” while strolling by an unmanned Dish Network kiosk at a Utah mall. [More]