Thinking about dumping cable or satellite TV service? Cord-cutters or experimenters can “Go Big” and take advantage of AT&T’s DirecTV Now streaming service at a reduced rate. The recently boosted introductory deal offers 100 streaming channels for $35 a month. The special offer ends January 9, 2017.
The DirecTV Now monthly Live a Little plan costs $35 and includes 60 channels, while the 100-channel Go Big plan normally costs $60 a month. Right now, however, you can sign up for the 100-channel package for $35 a month. You get seven days to try out DirecTV Now streaming to two devices simultaneously. If you don’t cancel during the trial week, you’ll be billed $35 for the first month and each month after that.
There’s no guarantee how long the rate will stay at $35. AT&T reserves the right to change the rate, the number of channels, the specific channels available, and pretty much anything else about the service whenever it wants. You can expect rates will go up in the future, although you may be able to keep the same rate but access fewer channels.
Factors affecting rate increases include content charges DirecTV itself has to pay and the ever-present desire to please the stock market. However, as competition for customers making the shift from traditional cable and satellite TV connections continues, the “locked-in” rate is likely to stick for a while
There is no contract with DirecTV Now, so if you don’t like the service as it is or if it changes, you can stop at any time. Potential subscriber loss is another factor likely to influence price stability.
There are a couple of other things to consider before jumping on the $35 GoBig deal. First, you can add HBO or Cinemax or both to your plan for $5 a month each (after 7 free days). Also, if you prepay the first month when you sign up, you can get a free Amazon Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote (normally $40). If you prepay three months on signup, AT&T will send you a free 4th-Generation 32GB Apple TV (regular price $150). Either of those devices will enable you to stream to a regular flatscreen TV, but if you don’t need another device for TV streaming, you can give it a pass.
As pointed out in our DirecTV Now hands-on review, the overall experience on televisions and mobile devices is smooth, but you can’t (yet) voice search for content with Alexa on the Amazon Fire TV Stick or with Siri on the Apple TV. Also, accessing episode information can be awkward if not impossible, depending on the viewing device.