Q. I’ve been thinking of getting rid of DIRECTV because my bill keeps going up and switching to Sling TV. And I was wondering if there are channels that Sling has but DIRECTV does not. Would I see things that I don’t see now? — Roger, Los Angeles.
A. Roger, before I answer your question. I should note that there are channels that DIRECTV carries that Sling TV does not.
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For example, depending upon where you live, your local channels may not be available on Sling while DIRECTV carries them in just about every market.
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In addition, DIRECTV mainstays such as The Weather Channel, Fox News, Nickelodeon and the MLB Network are not on Sling TV.
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However, that said, the reverse is also true. Sling TV does carry some channels that are not available on DIRECTV — and a few of them have been coveted for some time by many of the satcaster’s customers.
For example, Sling TV offers six different feeds of the Pac 12 Network in its Sling Blue and Sling Orange Extra plans, which cost an additional $10 a month and $5 a month respectively.
(Sling’s Orange plan starts at $20-a-month and includes ESPN and roughly 30 cable networks. The Blue package costs $25-a-month, and includes more than 40 channels including live network feeds in select markets as well as several Fox channels. The ‘Extra’ plans require a subscription to either Blue or Orange.)
DIRECTV has never carried the Pac 12 Network since the regional sports channel’s launch in 2012, much to the chagrin of West Coast-based football and basketball fans. The Pac 12 Network carries conference basketball and football games.
Sling TV also carries three different channels of Epix, the movie channel that has also never appeared in DIRECTV’s lineup. Sling’s cost is just $5 a month (in addition to the Blue or Orange monthly fee.)
So, Roger, if you make the switch, you might enjoy these new channels, but you’ll lose a few, too.
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I think all who are considering the switch need to understand that their internet connection can have a major impact on the quality of service. It is also important to note that highly viewed national events will likely be adversly affected. This issue is well documented and is the nature of the beast with live streaming over the open internet.