The above compares the regular, non-promotional pricing for DISH and Comcast.
What you get with DISH that you don't with Comcast XFINITY:
- More channels with a lower monthly bill
- Free Hopper HD-DVR upgrade
- The ability to watch live or recorded TV anywhere on all your favorite channels.
DISH wins versus XFINITY in the price category. As you can see (pictured right), Comcast loses this comparison hands down. DISH's most popular package, America's Top 200 is $69.99 per month. Comcast's Digital Preferred package with similar programming is $86.99 per month but with less channel offerings.
But, does Comcast offer more? Is that why they're more expensive?
Comcast promotes the argument that they offer you more value than DISH does and that's why they're more expensive. There are several ways to measure value, and that will be different based on the individual, but a good point of reference is: number of channels per package, and cost per month. Let's look at some examples.
Example (1): Two popular packages. Every day prices--no promotions.
- DISH's America's Top 120 channel package includes 190+ channels and costs $54.99 per month.
- XFINITY's Digital Starter package includes 140+ channels and costs up to $69.99 per month.
Example (2): Same packages as above, but this time with a two-room HD-DVR system. Everyday prices--no promotions.
- DISH's America's Top 120 channel package includes 190+ channels and costs $78.99 per month.
- XFINITY's Digital Starter includes 140+ channels and costs $80.99 per month.
The examples like this hold true for virtually every side-by-side comparison. DISH offers you more channels for less money per month.
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How does DISH HD and HD-DVR receiver upgrades compare to Comcast's?
Above we talked about package pricing. That argument is straight forward: DISH costs less than XFINITY. Even when you start comparing the HD receiver upgrades, HD service, and the different HD-DVR offers, like the Hopper or the Comcast HD-DVR, then the argument is just as straight forward. In this section we will show you how much better the Hopper really is and let you determine which offer is best for you.
Both DISH and Comcast have several HD, HD-DVR, and equipment upgrades:
HD Service: DISH's offer versus Comcast's offer.
DISH's offer: HD service is free for 24 months. Agree to the contract, and AutoPay billing, and that's it. Any HD receiver will work and most of the most popular programming packages qualify for this.
XFINITY's offer: HD service is NEVER free. You do not have to order a DVR receiver in order to get HD service. If you don't want a DVR, but just want HD service, it is $10 per month from day one. If you wish to have both HD service and DVR capabilities, that is $18.00 extra per month.HD service is not free with Comcast. Plus, it's even more money to add DVR functionality.
FREE HD Receiver upgrades (non DVRs): DISH versus Comcast
DISH offers up to three non-DVR, HD receiver upgrades free (more on DVR offers below). The HD free for 24 months promotion with DISH does not require that you order an HD-DVR.
Comcast offers a non-DVR, HD receiver upgrade for a monthly fee. HD service is not free with XFINITY when ordering non-DVR HD equipment. If you order an HD-DVR as one of your receivers, you will pay the $18.00 per month charge and if you just want a standard HD receiver, that will run you $10.00 extra per month.
DVR and HD-DVR Receiver upgrades (this deserves its own section).
... XFINITY charges $18 per month for HD-DVR service.
... DISH charges $12 per month for a Hopper HD-DVR.
Introduction to DVR offers
DISH has two types of Digital Video Recorder (a.k.a., DVR) receivers: a regular HD-DVR, and Whole-Home HD-DVR. Comcast only offers one HD-DVR receiver model. The difference is exactly what it sounds like. The regular DVRs are designed to deliver DVR to a limited number of TVs in the home while the Whole-Home DVRs are designed to deliver DVR to all of the TVs in the home. Only DISH gives you offers for each type of DVR.
Regular HD-DVR Receivers and Upgrades: DISH vs Comcast
DISH offers one free HD-DVR receiver upgrade. The DVR service is $7 per month and the HD service is free for 24 months. DISH has two different HD-DVR receivers. One is the ViP 722k, which is a two-room HD-DVR, the other is the ViP 612, which is a single-room HD-DVR. You can use this receiver upgrade and still get two additional non-DVR HD receiver upgrades for free.
XFINITY does not charge an upfront fee when ordering the regular HD-DVR. However, this receiver only operates one TV. But they do charge a monthly fee for the DVR service on this type of receiver.
Whole home HD-DVR promotions. DISH's Hopper and Joey vs. XFINITY's Standard HD-DVR
This comparison probably deserves its own webpage, but for now, we will describe the two offers for you briefly and cut right to the chase.
DISH offers one Hopper and three Joey's as free receiver upgrades. Hopper DVR service is $12 per month. HD service is free for 24 months. The Hopper receiver fee is included in your channel package price, and each Joey is $7 per month and has full HD-DVR access via the Hopper. This free upgrade will service up to four TVs and can record up to six HD channels simultaneously. If you want service on six TVs you will need one additional Hopper ($49) and one additional Joey ($99), totalling an upgrade fee of $148. With two Hoppers you can record up to nine HD channels simultaneously. All six TVs can watch separate channels at the same time.
XFINITY offers only one type of HD-DVR whic does not have "Whole Home" capabilities. The DVR service fee is $18 per month. That fee includes the HD service for $10 per month. If you want service on six TV's you will need DVR's in each room, totalling an upgrade fee of $18 per month, per receiever.
DVR service fees and promotions
DISH charges $7 per month for regular HD-DVR service, or $12 per month for the Hopper HD-DVR service. In both cases, HD service is free for 24 months. It's as simple as that.
XFINITY combines their DVR fee with their HD fee and they charge $18 per month per receiver. You cannot experience the Whole Home DVR functions that the Hopper gives with these standard DVR's and will pay hundreds of dollars per month to get service 6 rooms.
Promotions that you could consider "exclusive."
Both DISH and XFINITY offer a lot of promotions for new customers. If monthly price, or the equipment promotions aren't enough to decide one way or another, sometimes the exclusive promotions can. That's what we'll discuss here.
DISH offers a few exclusives that XFINITY cannot offer. One is DISH's TV Anywhere features, which use Sling functionality. Sling--built into the Hopper for free--allows you to watch recorded or live TV content anywhere you want with devices such as: mobile phones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers. Comcast's streaming of live TV is extremely limited, covering only 50 channels; of which the local networks--like ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX--are not included. Another is Dish Movie Pass. Dish Movie Pass includes streaming video to your TV or PC, and adds 20+ premium HD channels to your programming package.
XFINITY's flagship exclusive promotion is that they offer a Triple Play Package that bundles your digital phone, high-speed internet and cable services. They offer a free $100 gift card but only when you sign up for all 3 services. They continue to skirt around the issue of their prices being much higher than DISH Network's and they try to spin the fact they they offer you less channels for more money by giving you more value with a better On Demand section. XFINITY can simply not match the perks of getting DISH satellite TV.
Promotions both DISH and XFINITY do well
We said it in the beginning of this guide: Both DISH and XFINITY are very popular TV services. They both deliver a high quality product. Some of the differences are stark, like the monthly price being lower with DISH, and the superior technology you get with DISH. Other differences are more nuanced. But both companies have similarities in their offers that they both do well.
Both companies will offer free promotions and gift cards to provide incentives for signing up. Both also offer tons of HD programming and On Demand content.
We hope you enjoyed our DISH versus Comcast guide! If you still have questions, or would like to order, please call1-800-970-9509, , or customize your package.
All Comcast pricing and policy information sourced from www.comcast.com and/or live XFINITY associates.