DirecTV Now Review

This is a personal review of the DirecTV Now Streaming Service

DirecTV Now

AT&T just launched DirecTV Now on November 30th, and it comes with over 120 live channels at cost starting at $35 a month. $35 a month is for the service's basic "Live a Little" package. The cost increases as you add more channels or HBO and CINEMAX subscriptions. As crazy as it seems, AT&T will be losing money on their lowest & cheapest package. AT&T apparently has decided that since they are a little late to the streaming game, they need to offer their service at rate that is unsustainable in the long run. While that means low rates are here today for this service, they will likely go much higher in the coming months and/or years.

DirecTV Now also trumps the fact that it is "contract free" and "equipment free", which have always been a huge pain point for traditional cable companies. Typical Cable TV contracts are 2 years with early cancellation fees and the equipment sometimes doubles the Cable TV bill. With DirecTV Now, none of that is an issue anymore.

DVR Capabilities? Nope.

Do you like setting a list of shows you watch each week and then recording them? DirecTV Now will not have anything resembling traditional DVR functionality, which means there will be no pausing of live TV, no "recording" shows that you can access forever.

This is a major shortcoming for a service that has an upper-tier price point of $70 a month. Just for comparison, you can pause any show on Hulu and Netflix (although, I realize they are not "live") and their services cost around $10 a month. The problem with those services being so entrenched in the streaming wars, is that everyone expects pausing to be a standard feature by now.

Is AT&T Your Mobile Provider?

If so, you get to stream DirecTV Now over your mobile devices without paying for that data. Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint customers must pay just like everyone else. This is not really a problem for the public, but a great selling point for AT&T subscribers. This - of course - was AT&T's whole objective with this feature.

DirecTV Now Channels

In addition to some larger market ABC, NBC, Fox & Telemundo local stations, DirecTV Now offers a few different packages with different channels in each.

  • Live a Little ($35/month): A&E, AMC, Animal Planet, Audience Network, AXS TV, Baby First, BBC America, BET, Bloomberg TV, Bravo, C-SPAN, C-SPAN2, Cartoon Network, CMT, CNBC, CNN, Comedy Central, Crime & Investigation, Discovery, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, E!, ESPN, ESPN2, Food Network, Fox Business Network, Fox News Channel, Fox Sports 1, Freeform, FX, FXX, Galavision, Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, HGTV, History, HLN, Investigation Discovery, Lifetime, MSNBC, MTV, MTV2, National Geographic Channel, Nick Jr., Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite, Pursuit Channel, RFD-TV, Spike, Syfy, TBS, TCM, TeenNick, TLC, TNT, truTV, TV Land, Univision, USA Network, Velocity, VH1, Viceland, WE tv, WeatherNation
  • Just Right ($50/month): Everything in "Live a Little" (except Hallmark Movies & Mysteries) plus Big Ten Network, CNBC World, Comedy TV, Cooking Channel, ESPNews, ESPNU, Fuse, Fusion, GSN, IFC, LMN, MLB Network, NBC Sports Network, Nicktoons, OWN, Science, SEC Network, Travel Channel, UniMas, Weather Channel, WGN America
  • Big ($60/month, limited-time offer of $35/month): Everything in "Just Right" plus American Heroes, BBC World News, Centric, Destination America, Discovery Family Channel, Discovery Life, DIY Network, FM, Fox Sports 2, FX Movie Channel, fyi, Golf Channel, Great American Country, Logo, MTV Classic, Nat Geo Wild, NBA TV, NBC Universo, NHL Network, Oxygen, Revolt, Sprout, SundanceTV, Tennis Channel, TVG
  • Gotta Have It ($70/month): Everything in "Go Big" plus Boomerang, Chiller, Cloo, El Rey Network, Justice Central, eight Starz Encore channels (Action, Black, East, Family, Classic, Suspense, West, Westerns), Univision Deportes Network

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