FIOS vs the DISH

The Dish

The Switch from the DISH

Recently our family made the switch from the DISH, as in Dish Network, to FIOS TV from Verizon. Over the years, all TV providers in the area had been increasing their prices, but consumers weren't getting any additional benefits for the extra money. Often I would think, "Why are we paying for 200+ channels, but there's still nothing good on to watch?" An in-depth scroll through the guide revealed a high number of channels that were just shopping networks and infomercials.

Why We Changed to FIOS TV

Reason #1: It's a better value for the money. All the television providers - satellite, cable and FIOS - were advertising introductory specials, so we took advantage of one. We were getting a pretty basic package with Dish, and they were charging us extra for equipment maintenance protection and local TV. Why local TV wasn't included in the package is beyond me. Then they started jerking us around with the channels - sometimes they would add new channels, but often they would remove channels we liked. The new ones were never very interesting. When we started seeing charges on our bill for pay-per-view movies we never ordered, that was the last straw.

Reason #2: FIOS had a lot more channels available, all in one package. If you sign up with FIOS, you get them all! HD is a premium deal, but we don't have an HDTV anyway. So now we get a host of other channels that we would have had to pay extra for on Dish. My son is thrilled now that he has Fox Soccer and Speed Network (he's a NASCAR fan). My husband is thrilled to get more channels of college football. I get DIY Network, Bloomberg TV, and 4 versions of History Channel. My daughter gets Funimation and Boom, for anime and old school cartoons. We're all happier!

A Mess

Reason #3: More discreet equipment. With the DISH, we had that ugly trash can lid thing sticking up out of our house. And they had wires going all over the place inside our house. Phone wiring and cable wiring. It just looked a mess. With FIOS, the cable comes in from the street, underground through our front yard, and into the house. The main box is located near our electrical box, so it just looks like it fits in. FIOS needed to install a battery back-up near an electrical outlet inside our house, and it is rather large. But we just got them to put it behind the furniture, hidden close to where the TV is.

Reason #4: Better functioning equipment. The FIOS set top boxes don't make nearly as much noise as the DISH boxes did. The DISH box used to do some kind of update every night and the grinding sound was so loud you could hear it in the next room. Our FIOS remote controls actually work (one of our DISH remotes was temperamental - you had to point it at exactly the right mid-air spot to get it to work). We've discovered that our FIOS remotes are interchangeable - they work on both TVs. The DISH remotes were room specific, so you were screwed if they got mixed up. With FIOS, we don't lose our signal in high winds, which happened frequently with the DISH.  When the fierce Santa Ana winds were blowing, sometimes the DISH signal would go out every few seconds, really annoying!

FIOS Battery Backup Unit

Reason #5: Video on Demand - this is a feature that DISH did not have at all. FIOS has lots of pre-recorded shows and movie in a variety of genres available on demand. Many of them are free, some are pay-per-view. You can watch episodes of Spongebob Squarepants, for example, without having to record them yourself. Your DVR memory space is then freed up for other recordings. Being able to watch kids shows anytime has been a great feature for the kids.

I feel I must add this edit: We have discovered another great feature with the FIOS DVR technology. We're in the middle of watching a show but have to interrupt viewing for whatever reason. So we push the "Record" button to record the rest of the show. Guess what? When we go to play it back, the whole show or movie from the beginning has been recorded! How cool is that? I think it only works since we've been tuned into that channel from the beginning of the show, but it's happened several times now to our delight. DISH DVR never did that.

Reason #6: Bundling with telephone and Internet service simplifies bill paying. One bill, three services. Just easier.

Reason #7: Is it my imagination, or is the picture just a tiny bit clearer?

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Comments 7 comments

Time Spiral profile image

Time Spiral 6 years ago from Florida

I'm a marketing manager for Dish. I found your article interesting and informative. Thanks for sharing. For your benefit, and those who may browse this, I'd like to clear up a few points of contention you mentioned.

"Why local TV wasn't included in the package is beyond me." - All service providers charge for the locals. The only difference is whether or not it is optional, or automatically included (fancy term for: hidden)in your bill. Many people get locals with an off-air antenna, and do not want to pay for them. So, with Dish, they are optional (and fairly priced).

Fiber Optics as a delivery platform for telecast services is relatively new. It is still buried, and a very vulnerable (and costly) infrastructure ... we'll see how it fares after a few years.

Prices and channels - they are very comparable. Question: did they remove all the regular cable wiring from your home? They probably did. This is a technique used to "retain" customers. You no longer have the standard in telecast cables in your home, which is RG6 coaxial. So switching out from Verizon is going to be tough ... Just things for all who switch to consider.

I'd be interested to see your thoughts when their promotional pricing runs out. Good article though! I liked it.

dfelker profile image

dfelker 6 years ago from Southern California Author

Glad you took a look at my hub, thanks! The choice of tv providers I would say is based strongly on the tastes of our family members, esp. kids. So Fios is still better for us based on the fact that they watch Fox Soccer, Speed, Boom, and Animal Planet all the time now! That would have been a more expensive Dish upgrade to get those. P.S. we've had 2 Santa Ana winds since we switched, no problems so far. Also, no one removed any wiring in the house but maybe Verizon removed the old feeds to our house when they dug up the street and everyone's front yard..

dfelker profile image

dfelker 6 years ago from Southern California Author

I've made an editorial addition under reason #5. So far we're very satisfied FIOS customers.

Newyork204 profile image

Newyork204 4 years ago from Anchorage, AK

FIOS is good but is really expensive. It costs hundreds of dollars for a house to get hooked up with FIOS. Though companies offer free installation they have to make it back some way.

The typical person with a FIOS bundle is paying at least $200 a month. Most of its customers seems to really like it though so one could say that it is a good value.

Vishal 21 months ago

Okay, we pay the cable company about 60 dorlals a month. For that we get what's called broadcast basic, all the major networks plus a couple of extras like WGN and ION. That also includes our internet service. If you have almost any type of video game system you can stream Netflix through that for 8.99 a month. We also picked up a Roku for the other TV so that the kids can play their games in the other room while we stream a movie. For phone service we bought an Ooma. You can't use this if you don't have cable internet so it helps justify the web. Once you've got the ooma your calls are free. The downside is the up front cost is about $200 dorlals but there is a referral code (WOK8626) that will take $40 dorlals off and pay for the shipping. Once that's in place all you pay is taxes. Our monthly bill with them is under 5 dorlals. Shoot me a note if you have questions and I'll help if I can.

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