AT&T will bump DirecTV Now prices up $5 by August

Cal Jeffrey

TS Evangelist
Staff member

Over the weekend DirecTV Now customers began receiving emails informing them their subscription rates would be increasing by $5 per month. This hike would set its four tiers to $40, $55, $65, and $75.

The new rates go into effect on July 26 for new customers. For those with existing plans, the increases will take effect based on individual billing dates. This means that by August everyone will be paying more for their subscriptions.

DirecTV Now is AT&T’s streaming alternative to cable. In a statement provided to CordCutters, a spokesperson claimed that the price hikes are intended to bring it in line with its competition.

“In the 18 months since our launch, we have continued to evolve our DIRECTV NOW products to serve this new customer set and compare favorably with our competitors. To continue delivering the best possible streaming experience for both new and existing customers, we're bringing the cost of this service in line with the market—which starts at a $40 price point.”

Currently, the service provides customers with four different packages.

  • “Live a Little” — $35/mo for 60+ channels
  • “Just Right” — $50/mo for 80+ channels
  • “Go Big” — $60/mo for 100+ channels
  • “Gotta Have It” — $70/mo 120+ channels

All these plans will increase by $5 by later this month. There is also a Spanish language package (Todo Y Más) with about 90 or so channels for $45 per month, but it is unclear whether it will be affected by the rate increase. The Todo Y Más plan was only just introduced in June, so AT&T might not want to raise those rates so soon.

The subscription fee increase comes right on the heels of Sling's $5 price bump. Official word is that the company wants to bring DirecTV Now rates in line with the streaming market. However, AT&T’s contentious acquisition of Time Warner likely has the communications giant grasping for ways to pay for the $85 billion merger. The telecom firm has also recently raised the administrative fee for its phone subscribers which is expected to bring in a windfall of about $800 million per year.

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Evernessince

TS Evangelist
The only thing that's going to come from this merger are increased prices and more workers layed off. The reason these companies consolidated is to increase their weight in the content market. In addition, because you don't need two marketing departments, customer support, ect you will see people getting layed off. This may help them deliver content at a higher profit margin but that comes at the cost of jobs and the consumer's wallets.
 
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wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
This seems to be going pretty much where I expected offerings like these and similar from Dish, I.e., Sling, would go. Give them a few years, and the prices will be right up there alongside their regular subscriptions offerings - which, to me anyway, would negate the benefit of being a cord-cutter in the first place. These services are just not at all willing to give up the addictions they have to their customer's wallets, IMO.

When Sling came out, they were more expensive on a per-channel basis than most of Dish's offerings.

Personally, I did not cut the cord to pay more, I cut the cord to pay less, and I refuse to subscribe to offerings like this

I also think that people need to rediscover the TV antenna and just how much content can be had over-the-air in most places in the US. For anyone interested in learning just how much OTA content is available in their area try searching at this link - http://www.tvfool.com/ Note that when using this link, many stations now broadcast more than one channel. The main stations in my area all broadcast at least three channels each, but they are not necessarily listed in the search results.

In addition, TIVO offers an OTA DVR. There is an outright price to buy it, but once that is paid, you will supposedly have their guide service indefinitely, and it would pay for itself in a year on the money that would be saved if only subscribing to the $35/mo tier. I don't have this as I use MediaPortal.

Maybe for some, this is right, but the offerings for me are just more of the same crap. I'm not much of a sports fan except for the NHL, but even then, subscribing to NHL Center Ice directly from the NHL web site would be my solution.

Of note, I stayed at a hotel for a few nights recently and had an opportunity to watch what I was missing as the hotel had cable. While I was watching, it was easy to convince myself that cutting the cord was the right thing for me to do as there was still all the same crap available.
 
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Slappy McPhee

TS Addict
This BS is why so many people will continue to use alternative means to consume content. A new way to do something comes out, the industry fights it, then grudgingly embraces it, then hikes the prices. They can all eff themselves. I wouldn't have an issue with paying for content exclusively however when companies pull this BS you can be assured that I will instead procure content elsewise. This reminds me of the joke they call al a carte where they charge you more to get only what you want. Fleecing the public per the status quo.
 

Cal Jeffrey

TS Evangelist
Staff member
Meh. TV is a dying industry, let them hike prices. The low quality garbage they make isnt worth $5 a year.
Agreed. Aside from a few news programs, I do not watch cable or network garbage. There are some show on Netflix that I enjoy and there have even been a few that have been licensed from networks (The Walking Dead for instance) that I enjoy, but damned if I'll watch them on the network. I'd rather be a year behind on episodes than pay Comcast for 3 networks that I watch and 100 that are pure trash.
 

wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
Agreed. Aside from a few news programs, I do not watch cable or network garbage. There are some show on Netflix that I enjoy and there have even been a few that have been licensed from networks (The Walking Dead for instance) that I enjoy, but damned if I'll watch them on the network. I'd rather be a year behind on episodes than pay Comcast for 3 networks that I watch and 100 that are pure trash.
I feel the same way about being a year behind. The bonus is that when those shows come to Netflix - no commercials. I was watching at most 5 stations when I had Dish - for $85/mo. My HTPC has paid for itself since I switched, and IMO, you cannot beat Netflix or Hulu - the $8/mo tier - for being able to watch whatever you want to watch whenever you want to watch it. For the $8/mo Hulu, most shows end up coming there, too, after about a year. I'm fine with that.
 

Evernessince

TS Evangelist
I feel the same way about being a year behind. The bonus is that when those shows come to Netflix - no commercials. I was watching at most 5 stations when I had Dish - for $85/mo. My HTPC has paid for itself since I switched, and IMO, you cannot beat Netflix or Hulu - the $8/mo tier - for being able to watch whatever you want to watch whenever you want to watch it. For the $8/mo Hulu, most shows end up coming there, too, after about a year. I'm fine with that.
Yeah, HTPC software is just so good nowadays that it's the best way to consume content. You can get live TV, streaming services, live sports, and your own media library. Not to mention all the plugins.
 

RaXoR

TS Addict
Wonder how this will affect the go big grandfathered promo of $35 a month. It is supposed to be $35 for life as long as we keep the account active.
 
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Cal Jeffrey

TS Evangelist
Staff member
Wonder how this will affect the go big grandfathered promo of $35 a month. It is supposed to be $35 for life as long as we keep the account active.
You know I didn't see anything mentioned about that when I was digging around. I didn't even know that was a deal. Perhaps DirecTV not mentioning it at all means that it will remain unaffected. Remember, this news originally came from emails that were sent out to existing customers, so if you have one of these grandfathered deals and have not received notice, you're probably okay. But who really knows. We are dealing with AT&T after all.
 

wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
Yeah, HTPC software is just so good nowadays that it's the best way to consume content. You can get live TV, streaming services, live sports, and your own media library. Not to mention all the plugins.
Certainly, I agree. I personally don't have a video library as I mostly rent Blu-ray from Redbox, but I do have a small music library which is easy to play through MediaPortal.

MediaPortal also has an "Online Videos" plugin with which I have been watching some Ted Talks recently. That's pretty cool, although, I have not even begun to explore all the other sources of video through that plugin. Not to mention OTA capabilities that include recording four of the local station main feeds at the same time. I've never done it or had the reason to do so, but it is my understanding that if you can simultaneously record all the sub-channels of one station at the same time from one tuner - which, in theory anyway, means I could record potentially up to 16-different shows at the same time. The best part of this is that all this capability is free.

With Dish, part of what I was paying for was OTA and was a large portion of what my wife and I watched. Now, that is content that I no longer have to pay for.
 
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