Skip to main content

Get a free Apple TV 4K when you commit to four months of DirecTV Now

Amazon Prime Video on Apple TV
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

If you’ve been thinking of cutting the cord, r you’re ready to give a new streaming service a try, DirecTV Now has got a pretty sweet deal: Pre-pay for four months of service, at a minimum of $50 per month, and the company will throw in a free, 32GB Apple TV 4K, worth $180. Or, looked at another way, you get $200 of live streaming TV, for just $20. Either way, you have until April 30 if you want to take advantage of the offer, as long as you’re a new subscriber.

DirecTV Now is AT&T’s answer to products like Sling TV and Hulu with Live TV, in that it’s a streaming subscription TV service that delivers both live and on-demand programming over your existing internet connection. It doesn’t require a cable or satellite box, though you do need a compatible streaming device like the Apple TV 4K. It’s become a popular choice for cord-cutters who want to ditch their cable TV subscription, but who don’t want to leave the familiarity of an on-screen guide and premium channels they’re accustomed to.

At first blush, offering up a free Apple TV 4K feels like a thinly veiled move to by DirecTV Now to bolster its subscriber numbers. In January, we learned that the company had a miserable fourth quarter of 2018, losing a quarter of a million subscribers over three months. The company partially pointed the finger at folks who had reached the end of their discounted promotional period and were now forced to stay and pay full price or leave. By giving away an Apple TV 4K, DirecTV Now can still deliver a valuable incentive for signing up while not diminishing the amount customers actually pay each month for the service. By the end of the four-month minimum, people will be able to walk away and keep their free Apple TV, but they may not feel the abrupt change in their monthly bills the way those who were on cheaper plans did.

The Apple TV promo makes good sense on another level too: In March, DirecTV Now announced that it was compatible with the TV app experience on Apple TV — Apple’s curated, all-in-one video watching app. This gives new subscribers a choice of how to watch — either use the free DirecTV Now app, or watch the content from within Apple’s experience. When Apple launches the revamped TV App experience later this year, it will be an even more compelling way to view DirecTV Now and might well keep subscribers from turning off the tap once their minimum commitment is over.

The only irony here is that despite the Apple TV 4K’s ability to show content in 4K, HDR, and with Dolby Atmos audio, DirecTV Now’s content isn’t currently available in any of these formats.

Editors' Recommendations

Simon Cohen
Contributing Editor, A/V
Simon Cohen covers a variety of consumer technologies, but has a special interest in audio and video products, like…
The least interesting things about the new Apple TV 4K
The new Apple TV 4K, 3rd-generation, with the Siri remote.

It's a big deal whenever Apple announces new products. OK, maybe not in the global scheme of things, but in our little world here, every sentence of every word of every press release is going to be scrutinized. Things that aren't a big deal are going to be turned into headlines. Blog. Blog. Blog.

And that's true again in the case of the latest Apple TV 4K, which will be available for everyone starting November 4. It is, for all intents and purposes, the same as the old one. It's better, sure. It's a little less expensive, which is great. It's almost certainly still the best streaming device you can buy. But the features that are getting the headlines? That's folks reaching for something to celebrate.

Read more
Go ahead and spend the extra $20 on the good Apple TV 4K
Apple TV 4K 2021.

Apple has announced two new versions of the Apple TV 4K. Both are good for all kinds of reasons. Better internals. New features. And prices that are much more likely to be competitive, even if they're still a good bit north of what folks are spending on the likes of Roku and Amazon Fire TV devices.

But two new Apple TV 4K boxes -- and the death of the lower-resolution Apple TV HD -- means you've got a decision to make. Which Apple TV 4K is right for you?

Read more
New Apple TV 4K tweaks the internals and the price
Apple TV 4K 2022.

Apple today announced a new version of Apple TV 4K. It's the third generation of what we consider to be the best streaming device you can buy, and Apple's not really messing with things too much. Same general design. Same general function. But the internals have been tweaked that allow this 2022 model (which follows the models released in September 2017 and May 2021) to work better with more TVs — and to allow for a little more flexibility in price.

Here are the big deals: There are now two versions of Apple TV 4K (or SKUs, for those of you who prefer inside-baseball terms). There's a model that's Wi-Fi only with 64GB of storage for $130, or a model with Wi-Fi and Ethernet with 128GB of storage for $150. For our money, we'd just go ahead and spend the extra $20.

Read more