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DISH Network Satellite TV vs. Cable TV - Which is Best? DISH Network has been in a heated battle with U.S. cable companies for a number of years to get your business. While Network has been gaining customers most cable companies have been losing their customers to DISH Network. Here's why ... DISH Network Satellite TV vs. Cable TV Fees Cable TV fees vary from region to region, but the average monthly cable subscription fee is $39.95. In my neck of the woods the base fee is $37.30 a month for 64 channels, plus $10.95 a month if I were to add some digital channels. DISH Network's subscription fees start at $19.99 for 40 channels, and $29.99 for 230 channels including 60 Sirius radio channels. All DISH Network's programming is in digital format and you don't have to pay extra for it. Cable TV fees have increased an average of 22% over the last three years while DISH Network's fees have remained the same. DISH Network Satellite TV vs. Cable TV Equipment When you subscribe to cable TV you are usually given free cable boxes but if you want a DVR (digital video recorder) receiver you'll have to pay for it. With DISH Network you get a free satellite TV dish and a four-room receiver system for free, and DISH Network will give you a free DVR receiver or a free HD (high definition) receiver. DISH Network Satellite TV vs. Cable TV Installation Cable TV installation fees vary from region to region. Installation in my area costs $39.95 for one room and $9.95 for each additional room. DISH Network will install an entire four-room satellite TV system free, and when your installer is done he or she will show you how to operate your system. DISH Network Satellite TV vs. Cable TV Programming When it comes to programming there's really no comparison. Even satellite TV rival DIRECTV can't compete with DISH Network's 350 channels, which includes 52 music channels, 60 Sirius satellite radio channels, 31 movies channels, 10 sports packages, 21 international channels, and 80 pay-per-view channels. With cable TV you only get a few channels in digital format whereas all DISH Network programming is in digital format, giving you a much higher-quality picture and a more realistic sound. DISH Network also has the most HD programming. DISH Network Satellite TV vs. Cable TV Reliability and Customer Service Cable TV blackouts average 3% to 5% per year, while DISH Network's average is 1% per year. And DISH Network has ranked higher than any cable company in J.D. Power's customer satisfaction ratings for the last five years in a row. In most parts of the country customer service is limited to regular business hours. DISH Network offers toll free and online customer service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Bottom Line It's really a no brainer. When it comes to which service offers the most channels, the least expensive programming and installation fees, the best picture and sound, the highest reliability, and the best customer service, DISH Network is the clear winner. The author, Brian Stevens, is the senior editor for TheSatelliteTVGuide.com and has written extensively on DISH Network satellite TV vs. cable TV. © 2006 TheSatelliteTVGuide.com
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