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Is Satellite Television Really Free Or Not?

You have seen online and off-line advertising about free satellite TV. However, is satellite television actually free?

A simple answer to that question is both yes and no.

Certainly, the equipment that you get, i.e., the satellite TV receiver and the satellite TV dish is free. However, the program service is likely to cost you money.

Dish network satellite TV service

Once the customer orders a free satellite television service from the Dish Network, they will be asked to pay $49.99 as an activation charge. This amount would be credited to the customer's programming bill, hence in short, your satellite television system along with the installation is free.

Talking of the dish network, you have the choice to upgrade to an HDTV receiver or a digital video recording receiver at no additional amount.

The program service of Dish Network begins at $31.99 each month for the pack of 60 programming channels. It goes up to $86.00 for 230 TV channels which includes Starz, HBO, Sirius radio, Cinemax, & Showtime.

DirecTV Satellite Television Service

Depending upon the customer's credit score, once they order DirecTV service, they might be required to pay a prepayment or a deposit charge.

Since the deposit amount is refunded to the customer and the prepayment goes into the programming fees, the DirecTV receivers & dish are free. The setup is also free.

For those who want DVR receiver, there will be charged an extra $49.99. The fees for HDTV receivers is $299.99.

The programming package of DirecTV begins at $41.99 each month for the pack of 150 channels & rises up to $93.99 each month for the pack 185 programming channels.

With DirecTV, the customer is offered additional sports programs as compared to DISH Network or cable TV.


Both DirecTV & Dish Network's basic satellite television receivers & dishes are free ... however the service might cost you at least $32 - $94 on a monthly basis.

Hence, for those who watch a few TV programs on a weekly basis and also have access to over the air television, or cable TV and are satisfied with the service, then satellite television possibly might not be the right choice for you.

On the contrary, if TV is your major source of entertainment or if your cable TV bill is starting to equal up with your mortgage payments, then satellite television could be your best bet.


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