DIRECTV via Satellite vs DIRECTV via Internet

DIRECTV provides two distinct TV services, satellite based and stream over the internet. Thus, the first one and well known, DIRECTV that goes over the satellite, and then DIRECTV STREAM that is streaming via your Internet connection. The second one is the newer service that went through several name changes. It started as AT&T TV, then went through AT&T TV NOW, DIRECTV NOW, and finally settled as DIRECTV STREAM as it is today. DIRECTV is now a totally separate company from AT&T.

But this is not why we are here today. We mention DIRECTV STREAM on purpose, because we want to leave it on the side. What we are doing here today is comparing DIRECTV Via Satellite vs DIRECTV Via Internet. “Huh,” you say, “What the heck is that now?”

DIRECTV Via Satellite and Via Internet

Recently, DIRECTV added a new way of delivering the programming to customers. The result is that now we have two ways for getting the DIRECTV programming – Via Satellite and Via Internet. The first one is as DIRECTV always was, over the satellite dish. The second one is without the dish. Via Internet, as its name says, uses your Internet connection only. If you subscribe to DIRECTV via Internet, you get a receiver which you plug into your home network, or you connect it via your home Wi-Fi. That’s it.

Now you get it why we wanted to mention DIRECTV STREAM and then leave it on a side. While DIRECTV STREAM also comes over the Internet, it is not as same as the DIRECTV Via Internet service. This article is only about the DIRECTV with the two delivery options, Via Satellite and Via Internet. The Via Internet DIRECTV and DIRECTV STREAM are two different services.

So, now we dive into the comparison of DIRECTV Via Satellite vs Via Internet.

What Is The Difference Between Via Satellite and Via Internet DIRECTV?

The recent addition of Via Internet DIRECTV satellite TV service produced some questions. It probably created some confusion as well. Therefore, an additional explanation is requested by some of potential subscribers, as well as by existing customers of DIRECTV. Surely, DIRECTV’s support can answer all of your questions if you contact them.

The old-fashioned satellite DIRECTV stayed the same. In order to use it, you get the satellite dish installed, coupled with the receiver and everything else you need for a satellite TV service.

But with the DIRECTV via Internet, things changed. This type of service needs a high speed Internet connection only. The Internet service can be provided by any provider. It can be your existing service, or the one that you are planning to order. Once you have the high speed Internet connection in place, you are ready to get the DIRECTV via Internet service. The speed requirement for this service is the minimum internet speed of 8Mbps per stream. That is DIRECTV’s recommendation for optimal viewing. And if you are aiming to watch programming in 4K resolution, then the minimum speed would be 25Mbps. Keep in mind that minimum recommendations are as they say, a minimum.

Looking into what is being offered around by internet providers, we will take the freedom to state that a 50Mbps Internet plan would be our minimum for this service. just to be sure we experience no hiccups in delivery of the signal. If you area is served by fiber optic Internet service, then you should be able to rest assured that the lowest plan will be sufficient for your internet needs. Unless you already use Internet for something more demanding, but then you already know that terrain, and you probably do not need an advice from us, when about speed.

DIRECTV Gemini Device

DIRECTV GeminiThe Via Internet service is delivered through the new set-top box called Gemini. This receiver was launched by DIRECTV earlier this year. They started with offering it to selected subscribers. This was for live testing purpose. Later, the beginning of April 2023, the device was officially publicized, and now it is a regular part of both Via Satellite and Via Internet new orders. With Via Internet, at least one Gemini is required to get the service installed. With Via Satellite, the default offer is a standard DVR plus the Gemini, all included. If for any reason you don’t want the Gemini device, you can opt for an option without Gemini. yes, this device looks the same as the one for DIRECTV STREAM, but they run different firmware, so they are not interchangeable, period.

Here you can learn more about the DIRECTV Gemini.

The Comparison Table – DIRECTV Via Satelliate vs Via Internet

Now, lets see the table that compares these two ways of getting the DIRECTV programming. What are the main differences?


DIRECTV via Satellite DIRECTV via Internet
DIRECTV Via Satellite DIRECTV Via Internet
Price Same package prices, starting at $84.99/month Same package prices, starting at $84.99/month
English Packages 4 4
Spanish Language Packages 4 1
International Add-ons 4 languages, 5 add-ons 9 languages, 26 add-ons
Sports Add-ons Yes No
Number of Channels Up to 340+ Up to 150+
On-demand Titles 70,000 65,000
DVR 200 hours of HD DVR recordings Unlimited Cloud DVR recordings
Installation Free professional installation Easy self-install
Equipment Gemini and HD DVR included Gemini included
Price Guarantee 2 years 2 years
Contract Yes, 24 months No
Cancelation Fees Early agreement termination fee applies ($20/mo.) No
Requires Autopay and Paperless Bill Yes No

Notes: After the 2-year price guarantee, prevailing prices apply on month to month bases. Additional receivers are at cost. Cloud recordings expire after 9 months.



The table above should be clear for view and understanding. But we will still comment on the biggest differences when comparing DIRECTV Via Satellite vs Via Internet.

  1. The Number of Channels Difference – No matter which way you go, there are four packages: ENTERTAINMENT (75+/165+), CHOICE (105+/200+), ULTIMATE (140+/270+), and PREMIER (150+/340+). Each package comes the certain number of channels, plus the additional channels for Via Satellite. If you look into the numbers in the brackets, the first one is for Via Internet, and the second one for Via Satellite.
  2. Spanish Language Packages – As you can see, Via Internet comes with one package (ÓPTIMO MÁS), while Via Satellite comes with four Latino packages (MÁS LATINO, ÓPTIMO MÁS, MÁS ULTRA, LO MÁXIMO).
  3. International Add-ons – Many more of international add-ons come with Via Satellite option. The Via Internet option comes with five add-ons in total. They are Brazilian, Korean, Vietnamese, and two Spanish add-ons. The Via Satellite choice comes with 26 add-ons in 9 languages. The languages are: Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese, Filipino, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese.
  4. Sports Add-ons – Via Internet comes with no sports add-ons. Via Satellite comes with two, MLB EXTRA INNINGS and FOX SOCCER PLUS.
  5. DVR Recordings – Via Satellite can record up to 200 hours of HD which is plenty. But the Via Internet option can record unlimited hours, but recordings expire after 9 months.
  6. Contract – As shown in the table above, Via Satellite requires a contract (24 months), while Via Internet at this moment can be ordered without contract.

That would be it about the DIRECTV Via Internet and Via Satellite options of subscribing  to this TV programming provider. There are a few more differences according to our comparison table, but we believe they do not require additional explanation. If you think some do, or have any other questions, post it below in the comments section.


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