At a Glance

Dish LogoATT-logo

Type of Service

Satellite

Type of Service

Fiber

Channel Count

290+

Channel Count

550+

Price

$59.99–$89.99 per month

Price

$35.00–$110.00 per month

Equipment Fees

$10.00 per month

Equipment Fees

Included in package price

Installation Fee

Included in price

Installation Fee

$35.00 activation fee

Contract

2 years

Contract

1 year

Customer Satisfaction

3.82/5

Customer Satisfaction

4.11/5

Dish Logo

Type of Service

Satellite

Channel Count

290+

Price

$59.99–$89.99 per month

Equipment Fees

$10.00 per month

Installation Fee

Included in price

Contract

2 years

Customer Satisfaction

3.82/5

ATT-logo

Type of Service

Fiber

Channel Count

550+

Price

$35.00–$110.00 per month

Equipment Fees

Included in package price

Installation Fee

$35.00 activation fee

Contract

1 year

Customer Satisfaction

4.11/5

Data effective 12/13/2017. Pricing subject to change. Not all offers available in all areas.

Is DISH or AT&T U-verse the best TV provider for you?

 

The Verdict

Choose DISH for nationwide availability and one of the best DVRs in the biz.

DISH TV service is available almost everywhere in the country, which makes it easy to recommend to people who move frequently and don’t necessarily want to change TV providers every time. DISH also offers affordable pricing and the most powerful DVR you’ll find anywhere. These upsides are balanced by a long contract and convoluted bundling options, but overall we think DISH makes a great choice—especially if you don’t need to bundle internet with TV.

Choose AT&T U-verse for the huge channel selection and lightning-fast service.

AT&T U-verse is now the top-ranked provider in nearly every category in our annual subscriber survey, including in overall customer satisfaction. AT&T combines great customer service with a ton of channels and the reliability and speed of fiber technology, so it’s easy to see why people are so happy with them. If it’s an option where you live, we highly recommend it.

Check out our complete review of AT&T’s TV service.

 

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Customer Satisfaction Ratings

To see customer satisfaction scores for all major television providers, check out our 2018 Customer Satisfaction Survey.

Dish Logo

Overall Customer Rating

3.82 Stars (3.82 / 5)

Advantages

  • Wide availability
  • Powerful DVR
  • Affordable pricing

Disadvantages

  • Required contract
  • Possible weather-related interference
ATT-logo

Overall Customer Rating

4.11 Stars (4.11 / 5)

Advantages

  • Large channel count
  • Outstanding customer satisfaction ratings
  • Range of packages to suit any need

Disadvantages

  • Limited availability
  • Required contract

Installation & Setup

DISH

4.02 Stars (4.02 / 5)

DISH has long been a leader in installation and setup satisfaction, and it makes sense that the company would try to provide a good experience in this category. Installing a satellite dish can be a little involved and it’s often the first major contact a customer has with the company, so providing a good experience can set the tone for the life of the contract. With a guaranteed seventy-five-minute window for service appointments and an installation fee that’s included in the price of the contract, DISH definitely delivers.

DISH Installation Fee: Included in price

AT&T U-verse

4.26 Stars (4.26 / 5)

AT&T’s installation score improved significantly this year—it rose by nearly a full point. AT&T doesn’t charge an installation fee, and the activation fee is a modest $35.00. Unfortunately, there is no self-installation kit available from AT&T, but the process is pleasant and affordable enough that we’re not too bothered by it.

AT&T U-verse Installation Fee: $35.00 activation fee

Channels

DISH

3.99 Stars (3.99 / 5)

DISH offers a standard channel assortment. At 290+ channels, the total count is a little lower than others, but all the standards are there so you likely won’t be pining for much. There are also plenty of sports and premium packages to choose from, like HBO®, Cinemax®, MLB Extra Innings, and NBA TV.

Check out DISH’s full channel lineup.

DISH Channels: 290+

AT&T U-verse

4.22 Stars (4.22 / 5)

AT&T U-verse has one of the highest channel counts of any TV provider out there, which likely contributes to its high score in this category. With over 550 channels to pick from, we don’t think you’ll have any trouble finding something to watch with AT&T U-verse. The usual premium-channel suspects are also available, like Cinemax®, STARZ®, and sports favorites like the SEC Network and NBA League Pass.

Check out AT&T U-verse’s complete channel listing.

AT&T U-verse Channels: 550+

Reliability

DISH

3.88 Stars (3.88 / 5)

Like its rival satellite TV provider, DIRECTV, DISH advertises 99% signal reliability. Generally speaking, that’s what you’ll get. Just be aware that there is a possibility of weather-related interference when you’re dealing with satellite signals. Basically, if you live in an area that’s prone to heavy rains or snow, DISH may give you more trouble than land-based TV services like cable or fiber.

DISH Type of Service: Satellite

AT&T U-verse

4.18 Stars (4.18 / 5)

This is another area where AT&T experienced big gains in satisfaction. As a fiber/DSL hybrid network, signal reliability should be excellent, and survey results are finally starting to live up to that expectation. In fact, AT&T now ranks first in reliability among providers. Fiber networks transfer TV signals to your home faster than satellite or cable, and that’s exactly what AT&T will deliver without missing a beat.

AT&T U-verse Type of Service: Fiber

Monthly Bill

DISH

3.39 Stars (3.39 / 5)

DISH’s pricing is middle-of-the-road. Its budget packages aren’t quite as cheap as AT&T’s, but the high-end prices aren’t quite as high either. DISH’s rating here reflects that—it also falls right in the middle. Our favorite package is America’s Top 250™, which offers 290+ channels for $89.99 per month.

DISH Price: $59.99–$89.99 per month

AT&T U-verse

3.83 Stars (3.83 / 5)

AT&T U-verse ranks first in monthly bill satisfaction and for good reason. Not only are the prices reasonable—with packages starting as low as $35.00 per month—but they also just get you a lot for your money. With its $35.00 package, for example, you get over 200 channels—for $35.00. Not many other providers can match that. In terms of value, we like the U300 package, with 470+ channels for $60.00 per month.

AT&T U-verse Price: $35.00–$110.00 per month

Tech Support & Customer Service

DISH

3.8 Stars (3.8 / 5)

For the first time in several years, DISH is not at the top of our list for customer support. What happened? Well, nothing really. DISH’s score actually increased over last year’s—the problem is that every other provider’s score also increased, some by quite a bit. So, it’s not so much that DISH is doing something wrong as much as everyone else has started (finally) doing something right. The DISH Spokeslistener is as available as ever, though, so if you do need help, you shouldn’t have any trouble getting it.

AT&T U-verse

4.06 Stars (4.06 / 5)

In addition to monthly bill satisfaction, AT&T now ranks first in tech support and customer service as well. The company’s support site is easy to use and helpful, with a good search function located front and center. There have been some issues getting a domestic call center in the past, but calling during regular business hours should help on that front.

Equipment

DISH Hopper 3 DVR

Simultaneous Recordings: 16
Storage: 500 hours of HD
Price: $10 per month
# of TVs per DVR: 7
Approximate Dimensions: 16″ x 11.5″ x 2″
Additional Features: Support for 4K resolution; built-in Netflix app

Check out our full review of the DISH Hopper 3

AT&T U-verse Total Home DVR

Simultaneous Recordings: 4
Storage: 165 hours of HD
Price: Included with package price
# of TVs per DVR: 8
Approximate Dimensions: 8″ x  6.1″ x 1.6″
Additional Features: Mobile app for managing recordings and controlling playback; easy-to-use interface

Check out our full review of the AT&T U-verse Total Home DVR.

Mobile Viewing Apps

Optimum

DISH Anywhere App

AT&T U-verse

AT&T U-verse Viewing App

Google Play Rating: 4.1 Stars (4.1 / 5)

Apple Store Rating3.3 Stars (3.3 / 5)

Manage DVR: Yes
Remote Control Function: No
Additional Features: Optimized tablet apps; real-time sports scores

Google Play Rating: 3.6 Stars (3.6 / 5)

Apple Store Rating4.6 Stars (4.6 / 5)

Manage DVR: Yes
Remote Control Function: Yes
Additional Features: Apple Watch app; powerful remote-control functions

Internet Service

DISH Internet

You have a few options if you want to bundle internet or phone service with DISH. The company used to offer its own satellite internet, but it now partners with HughesNet for satellite service and with a variety of local Internet Service Providers for cable or fiber service.

If you want to add HughesNet internet service to your DISH service, plans start at $49.99 per month. The availability and cost of other plans depends heavily on where you live. Enter your zip code below to see what’s available near you.

AT&T Internet

AT&T Internet service is excellent. If you live in an area that can get U-verse TV, you can bundle with AT&T Internet or possibly AT&T Fiber, which offers speeds up to 1000 Mbps. The fiber service is priced reasonably, with packages starting at $60.00 per month for 100 Mbps and $80.00 per month for the Internet 1000 plan.

More About the Providers

Dish Logo

Founded in 1997, DISH has grown into one of the largest satellite TV providers in the United States. The company serves almost fourteen million customers across the country.

ATT-logo

AT&T is one of the world’s most valuable brands and the twelfth-largest company in the world. It serves customers in twenty-one states across the US.

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