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The Hidden Costs of AT&T TV and Internet

We've dug through the fine print to find hidden fees on your AT&T TV and internet plans.

It’s fun to watch Sherlock on TV, but you probably don’t want to be him just to figure out your AT&T TV and internet bill. No worries—we’ve pulled out our magnifying glass, sorted through the fine print, and figured it all out for you.

AT&T plans and promotional prices

AT&T TV’s prices are comparable to cable TV and satellite TV services. However, AT&T TV uses streaming TV technology, and compared to top streaming services Hulu + Live TV and YouTube TV, the streaming service comes with a hefty price. Still, AT&T no longer has automatic price hikes the second year like it used to–so there’s that.

But if AT&T TV’s prices make you wince, just enter your zip code below, and you’ll be able to check out the TV and internet service options available in your area:

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AT&T TV plans summary

Channel count Monthly price*
65+ channels $69.99/mo.
90+ channels $84.99/mo.
130+ channels $94.99/mo.
140+ channels $139.99/mo.
90+ channels $64.99/mo.

Data effective 3/3/21. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
*w/24-mo. agmt. Prices higher in 2nd year.

AT&T no longer offers cable TV—AT&T TV is a live-TV streaming service.

Fortunately, you can still get your favorite channels—ESPN, HGTV, and Disney Channel are all available on the basic ENTERTAINMENT package. But AT&T TV has fewer filler channels than most cable TV packages (bye bye, Stingray music channels; we won’t miss you).

However, your TV experience will be dictated by your internet connection. Streaming TV can clog up your bandwidth, and if your internet is acting up, you’ll have problems watching TV too. We think that’s the pits.

Pro tip: When you bundle TV with internet, you can get a great deal. AT&T offers two internet services—a broadband product called AT&T Internet and a fiber-based option called AT&T Fiber. If it’s available in your area, we recommend you bundle AT&T TV with AT&T Fiber because of its high speeds and fair pricing.

AT&T internet plans summary

Download speeds up to 12-month introductory price* Ongoing price
100 Mbps $35/mo. $55/mo.
300 Mbps $45/mo. $65/mo.
1,000 Mbps $60/mo. $80/mo.

Data effective 3/3/21. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
*For 12 months with a 1-yr agreement plus taxes and equipment fee

After the first year with AT&T internet, your price will increase. Currently, AT&T Internet plans outside of the promotional period are $55 per month, and their much faster cousins—AT&T Fiber plans—raise to $80 per month.

Bundling with AT&T: AT&T TV and internet bundles summary

Channel count Download speed Monthly price
65+ Up to 100 Mbps $114.99/mo.
90+ Up to 100 Mbps $129.99/mo.
130+ Up to 100 Mbps $139.99/mo.
140+ Up to 100 Mbps $184.99/mo.
100+ Up to 100 Mbps $99.99/mo.

Data effective 3/3/21. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
*For 12 months with a 1-yr agreement, paperless billing, and Autopay

If you want all your services on one bill, you can get AT&T TV and AT&T internet plans together–but keep in mind there’s no discount for bundling. Also, when you’re putting your budget together, remember that your internet prices will go up in the second year even if your TV plans don’t.

Taxes, fees, and surcharges on AT&T plans

You know what they say about death and taxes. Your AT&T plan will come with tax surcharges on services and equipment based on the requirements of where you live. You may also need to pay a regional sports fee of up to $8.49 per month. This covers what your local stations charge AT&T to broadcast their channels.

There’s also an optional fee you should be aware of—unlimited data allowance on internet. That’s $30.00 per month, and you really shouldn’t bother with it. AT&T has monthly 1 TB data caps on most stand-alone packs, which is industry standard and more than most people will use. And if you’re getting at least AT&T Internet 100 or bundling with TV, you’ll get unlimited data at no extra charge anyway.

Type
Taxes
Regional sports fee
Unlimited internet data
Cost
Varies by area
Up to $8.49/mo.
$30.00/mo.

AT&T installation

Most AT&T TV packages come with free installation but require a one-time $19.95 activation fee. When it comes to internet service, AT&T charges a $99.99 installation fee.

AT&T installation fees summary

Service plan
AT&T TV
AT&T Internet plans
One-time fees
$19.95 activation fee
$99.99 installation fee

Data effective 3/3/21.

AT&T equipment fees

AT&T TV service has a matching set-top box with cloud DVR storage, similar to streaming devices like the Apple TV or Roku. But heads-up: you still have to pay for it. If you’re a well-qualified customer (hint: this has to do with your credit score), you can pay for AT&T TV’s device in installments. It’ll cost you $5 per month for 24 months in that case, but you can purchase the whole thing upfront if you want. If you’re not a qualified customer, though, you have to buy it upfront for $120 dollars.

The AT&T TV device comes with only 20 hours of cloud DVR storage, and it’ll cost $10 per month more to upgrade to unlimited storage. Any additional device receivers cost $5 per month on a 24-month payment plan.

Maybe those costs got your knees quaking, but you’re not required to get an AT&T TV streaming device. You can always download the AT&T TV app on platforms like Roku and Google Chromecast. But the AT&T TV device also comes with AT&T TV’s voice remote, which has Google Assistant to help you control your TV and other smart devices, so the tech itself is actually pretty sweet.

AT&T requires you to pay a $10-per-month equipment fee for its combo Wi-Fi router/internet modem, and the mandatory fee isn’t a great deal for subscribers. Unlike most competing internet providers, you won’t be able to skip the rental fees and save money by bringing your own modem or buying one from AT&T.

AT&T equipment fees summary

Equipment
AT&T TV set-top box
Additional AT&T TV devices
Unlimited cloud DVR
Internet equipment fee
Cost
$5/mo. for 24 mos. or $120 upfront
$5/mo. per receiver for 24 mos. or $120 each upfront
$10/mo.
$10/mo.

Data effective 3/3/21.

AT&T premium channels

Every AT&T TV package comes with three free months of SHOWTIME®, STARZ, and EPIX. Starting with the CHOICE package, you’ll also get three free months of Cinemax® and a free year of HBO Max.

These free channels can be very good or very bad. It all depends on how invested you are in premium channels and how good you are at remembering to cancel the subscription before the fourth month, which is when you’ll start getting charged for them.

If you’re all about premium channels, consider going for the PREMIER package. You’ll get NBA League Pass Premium for the 2020–2021 NBA season, along with every HBO, Cinemax, STARZ, and SHOWTIME channel.

AT&T premium channels summary

Channel add-on package
HBO Max
NBA League Pass Premium
Cinemax
SHOWTIME
STARZ
EPIX
Movies Extra Pack
Sample channels Monthly cost
HBO, HBO East, HBO Family, HBO Latino $14.99/mo.
Features all out-of-market and non-nationally televised NBA games $40.00/mo., free with CHOICE package or above
Cinemax East $11.00/mo.
SHOWTIME East, SHOWTIME Anytime $11.00/mo.
STARZ East, STARZ Kids & Family, STARZ ENCORE East, STARZ On Demand $11.00/mo.
EPIX, EPIX2, EPIX HITS, EPIX App $6.00/mo.
Hallmark Drama HD, MGM HD, MTV Live HD $5.00/mo.

Data effective 3/3/21.

Language note: AT&T offers additional Brazilian, Korean, and Vietnamese channel packs during the checkout process. The Vietnamese channel pack costs $20.00 per month, while the Korean and Brazilian packs cost $30.00 per month.

AT&T late fees

Out of all AT&T’s hidden fees, this one is the most straightforward. Miss a payment and you’ll be charged a late fee. The exact amount varies by state, but it’s generally up to $10.00 per bill.

AT&T cancellation costs

AT&T’s contracts last one year. If you need to bow out before then, AT&T will slap you with some hefty early termination fees. You’ll have to pay $15.00 for each month remaining on your TV or internet agreement.

Another word of caution: be sure to return your equipment on time or else you’ll receive a $150 fine on that too.

Our recommended AT&T package: AT&T TV CHOICE + AT&T Internet 100

On the AT&T TV side, the CHOICE bundle gets you popular channels like ESPN and Nick Jr., along with premium offerings like NBA League Pass and a free year of HBO Max. With AT&T Internet 100, you’ll have enough download performance to handle regular web browsing and streaming for a small to mid-sized household.

Final take

If you’re someone who just wants the best TV options, AT&T is here for you. By including equipment and premium cable options like HBO Max at no extra cost if you pay for a two-year agreement, AT&T gives its packages great value.

Sure, things can get pricey if you choose to get a bunch of channel packs, pick a lower-tier internet package, or cancel before your contract ends. But overall, AT&T shoots pretty darn straight for the territory.

If you’re not sure AT&T offers service in your area or want to compare it to other providers, we can help with that. Enter your zip code below to get all your TV and internet options.

Please enter a valid zip code.