Cord Cutting Guides, News, and Reviews
Long before there were skinny bundles, there was something called Dish Network. It’s now known simply as Dish. The satellite service provides a more old-school alternative to cable, but Dish has a stake in the cord cutting world as well, as Dish is the parent company of Sling TV.
Dish has devoted fans, but if you’re not one of them, how can you try it out? Is there any way to get a free trial of Dish? We’ll answer that and other questions below, so keep scrolling to hear us dish about Dish.
Unfortunately, Dish does not offer a free trial. Because of the equipment required to use Dish, it’s not really practical for the company to give the service away for free. Dish customers need satellite dishes, and those satellite dishes have to be installed somehow. It wouldn’t make much sense for the company to install a dish and make sure everything is working right, then come back a week or two later to uninstall everything because, hey, the free trial is over and the customer doesn’t want to continue using Dish.
That’s a lot of hassle for the company. It might work out OK for the customer, but from Dish’s perspective, it makes about as much sense as an orthodontist offering kids a one-week trial of braces.
Instead, Dish offers other deals, all of which are contingent upon a customer signing up for basic service first. See the next section for the lowdown on those deals.
Dish has a rotating package of deals for new customers. One of the more notable ones is a free voice-activated remote that uses Google Assistant. Dish also offers “free professional installation” and a smart HD DVR.
Those are the deals that everyone can get, but they also offer discounts and upgrades for certain groups. Those groups include military members, health care workers, first responders, and people over the age of 55.
Dish offers an AutoPay option, but unlike other services, that’s not the only way to pay your Dish bill. If you don’t want to use AutoPay, you can pay online, by phone, by text, by mail, or even through the MyDish app. AutoPay is required for some plans, however.
That depends on what kind of package you purchase. Dish has prebuilt packages with names like “America’s Top 120” and “America’s Top 200.” Those plans cost $59.99 and $84.99 a month, respectively. Or you can go to the Dish website and build your own package of channels and equipment (the cost goes up for each additional receiver you purchase). The cheapest Dish plan costs about the same as fuboTV’s most basic skinny bundle.
There’s no way to cancel Dish online. You’ll instead need to call customer service at 866-974-0781. Why can’t you cancel online, though? This is 2020, after all!
For starters, Dish has contracts. That’s a major difference between Dish and streaming services. Cancelling is more complicated because of things like early termination fees. You’re leasing equipment from Dish, so they want to make sure you’re in it for the long haul.
Since it is 2020, Dish also offers some plans without built-in contracts. That’s great, but the pay-as-you-go plans will cost you a few dollars more a month. You’re paying for flexibility.
We’re living in a world with lots of streaming options, which means Dish has lost some luster. But satellite TV is still a good choice for people with unreliable Internet connections. Just make sure you don’t mind signing a contract.
If you’re considering satellite TV, you may be wondering about the differences between Dish and DirecTV. For one thing, Dish doesn’t require you to have as high a credit score. You can learn more about the two services on our Dish vs. DirecTV page. If you just want to read a review of Dish, head to our very own Dish review page.
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