Xfinity vs. DISH

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DecisionData Team
April 19, 2020

If you need help deciding whether Xfinity by Comcast or DISH is a better TV provider for you, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll break down which provider offers the best price, the best sports options, and which offers the best service overall based on a number of key factors. Keep in mind that every situation is different, and what makes one TV provider great for the majority might not do the trick for you. By reading through the various comparisons we’ll lay out in this piece, you can determine which provider works best for you based on your individual situation.

Our Overall Pick: Is Xfinity or DISH Better?

We like DISH. Between their lower rates and fee-free billing model, additional options that Xfinity doesn’t offer, and their superior technology, DISH is likely your best bet for TV service providers if it’s between these two. DISH won out in almost every category by which we evaluated these providers.

ProviderType of InternetStarting PriceData CapsSpeedsContractsAvailability
Cable, Fiber29.991 TB15 Mbps – 2000 Mbps1 yearCheck Availability
Satellite, DSL, Cable or Fiber34.99Varies per providerVaries per provider2 yearsCheck Availability

Xfinity vs. Dish: Availability

Comcast Xfinity

Dish

DISH internet is available nationwide, although some of its internet service provider partners are only available in certain areas.

Xfinity vs. Dish: Customer Service

Xfinity

61

In the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), a highly-regarded ranking organization, Xfinity again ranks in the middle of the pack, with a rating of 61 out of 100, just below the industry average of 62 out of 100.

Dish

67

Dish scored better than Xfinity in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI)  coming in with a 67 out of 100. 

Customer Service Winner

Xfinity vs. Dish: Bundle services

This is another very tight race. Each of these companies has a lot to offer customers, whether they’re looking for a bargain basement package, a comprehensive channel line-up on a budget, or access to all the programming on television today.

DISH and Xfinity by Comcast’s channel line-ups in comparable packages are quite similar. We’ll have to break this down by what different people may consider important factors in deciding which package is best for them.

If you’re shopping for a package to please a family with kiddos, DISH wins out. They offer more kids programming in lower-tiered packages, even channels that are fairly high up in most company’s offerings, like BabyFirst TV.

Music and entertainment lovers will also find more for their money with DISH’s lower-level packages. On top of more comprehensive coverage of music channels like CMT at lower levels, DISH also offers 70 Sirius XM radio channels to customers even with their smallest package.

DISH also wins out when it comes to in-package sports channels. Though Xfinity’s coverage their lower level packages is nothing to shake a stick at and is better than other big-name TV providers, they leave out a few key channels that DISH gives access to.

Those who love to keep up to date with the news will likely find Xfinity’s packages more to their liking. They’ve got pretty comprehensive coverage of all the big news outlets even at their lowest level.

For film lovers, Xfinity offers more movie offerings without adding on premium channels than does DISH. You really just can’t beat access to Starz Encore with their Preferred package.

Xfinity Bundled Services

Because Comcast is a telecom provider themselves, the bundles they offer are for their own services. They offer home phone, internet, a new mobile telephone service, and home security services, though it’s important to note that not all services are available in all areas. Depending on what services you’re considering, you could qualify to receive a prepaid Visa gift card valued at up to $200, free movie channels, free installation, and free DVR service if you choose to bundle two or more Comcast services. You’ll also receive lower rates on the services themselves, though your discount varies based on your location and the services and packages chosen.

Performance Starter + Basic

Starting at $29.99/mo

Prices may vary by location

Plan Includes

  • Basic internet with speeds up to 25 Mbps
  • 1 TB of data per month

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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Blast! + Basic

Starting at $59.99/mo

Prices may vary by location

Plan Includes

  • Speeds up to 200 Mbps
  • 1 TB of data per month

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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Blast! + Extra

Starting at $79.99/mo

Prices may vary by location

Plan Includes

  • Speeds up to 200 Mbps
  • Over 125 channels
  • 1 TB data per month
  • Bonus: $100 prepaid visa card

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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Dish

ISH offers bundling with internet and phone services. They partner with HughesNet to offer satellite internet to their TV customers with a $5 monthly bill credit for a 2-year period, and though satellite internet isn’t the best available internet option for most people due to high costs and data limits, it may be the only high-speed internet option many people who live in rural areas have. They also partner with local telecom companies like CenturyLink and Frontier. Check in here to see which internet providers are available in your area and on DISH’s bundling page to find out what bundling options are available in your zip code.

America's Top 120 Channels

Starting at $59.99/mo

Prices may vary by location

Plan Includes

  • Get premium channels for free for 3 month
  • Free HD for life
  • Upgrade to whole-home HD DVR for $5

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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America's Top 120 Plus Channels

Plan Includes

  • Get premium channels for free for 3 month
  • Free HD for life
  • Upgrade to whole-home HD DVR for $5

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

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America's Top 200 Channels

Plan Includes

  • Get premium channels for free for 3 month
  • Free HD for life
  • Upgrade to whole-home HD DVR for $5

Call to order 1-877-387-6961

or

Check Availablity

Bundle Value Winner

Xfinity vs. Dish: Affordability

Plain and simple, DISH is cheaper for most customers. When you take into account package costs and add in the fees charged by both companies, you’ll save money by going with DISH. Even Xfinity’s Basic package winds up less than DISH’s America’s Top 120, which is a much more comprehensive package, when you take into account DVR costs, HD surcharges, and additional fees that are higher with Xfinity.

The only exception to this is in the top tier packages offered by both companies. Even after the rate lock-in you might be able to save a little bit of money by opting for Xfinity if you’re planning on going with their Premier package versus DISH’s Everything package.

Affordability Winner

Sports Channel Lineup Comparison

Both companies offer similar sports lineups. As is the case with most TV providers, they offer almost identical spreads of sports channels with the real difference coming into play based on how you can gain access to those channels.

Both of these companies offer multi-sport packages that contain channels like NFL RedZone, NFL Network, beIn Sports, and MLB Network. This allows you to pump up your package’s access to sports without actually upping the package size. This is a perfect option for people who watch predominantly sports programming.

DISH’s America’s Top 120+ package is also great way to get access to a vast array of sports programming, including regional sports not available until you get into higher-level packages with Xfinity by Comcast, without laying out a whole lot of extra dough.

DISH also offers a couple of premium sports add-ons that are not available through Xfinity, like Outdoor TV, Willow Cricket HD, and Racetrack TV Network. If one of these options is a deal breaker for you, DISH will definitely have your vote in sports. It’s important to note that both companies offer several of the channels found in the Outdoor package in their upper-tier packages, so you could certainly get access to those by purchasing a premium package with either company.

Sports Channels Winner

How Do Premium Channels from DISH and Xfinity Stack Up?

The premium channel line-ups offered by DISH and Comcast are fairly similar. There are just a couple small differences in their offerings. Chances are, the minute differences between the two aren’t going to sway you one way or the other, but it’s important to factor these things into your overall decision.

Netflix Through Comcast

Comcast offers a unique add-on that you don’t see from other cable companies. You can get your Netflix subscription right through Comcast at Netflix’s standard rate. Essentially, you’re bundling that subscription with your Comcast, so it’ll show up on your cable bill rather than coming directly out of your bank account every month. Their X1 DVR also offers you easy access to Netflix without even switching from the cable box’s input on your TV.

Slightly Cheaper Premiums & More Offerings Through DISH

Though they’re pretty close in price, several of DISH’s premium channel subscriptions are slightly less expensive than Comcast’s, but only by a couple bucks a month. DISH also offers a couple more ala carte options than does Comcast, including Starz Encore for just $6 per month and a movie channel package that will give you access to lots of ‘non-premium’ movie channels without bumping up to a bigger package.

Who Offers Better Premium Channels, DISH of Xfinity?

Because there’s just not that much difference between these two provider’s offerings in this department, it’s kind of tough to say. For the average household, the slight price decrease and increased options offered by DISH would make them the winner. After all, DISH’s DVR offers easy access to Netflix, too, even if your subscription isn’t on the satellite bill.

Premium Channels Winner

Contracts: Is There a Difference?

There’s a pretty big difference in the contracts that you’d sign between these two companies. Generally speaking, that’s to be expected since cable companies and satellite companies offer different types of service.

With DISH, you’ll have to sign a 2-year contract to gain access to their services. This is so that the company can make sure that you stick with their service long enough for them to offset the cost of installing a system in your home. However, DISH also offers a 2-year rate lock-in so that your bill won’t go up while you’re stuck with their service.

Cancellation before your contract is up with DISH will require you to pay about $20 per month, with a maximum payout of $480 ($20 each month for the entire 2 years).

Xfinity, like most cable companies, doesn’t usually require such long contracts. Their standard contract term is one year with a one-year rate lock-in. They offer frequent promotions, sometimes location dependent, that could allow you to grab service under a shorter contract, say six months or so. As a bonus for those who have no desire to be tied to a TV provider, they offer the option to pay about $10 more each month for your package to avoid signing a contract with them at all.

Comcast doesn’t give a cut and dried answer to what they’ll do if you break your contract with them, but they do state that they’ll prorate their mysterious early termination fee based on how long is left in your contract period.

Is Dish or Xfinity the Best TV Service Provider Overall?

Between DISH and Xfinity, we give DISH the title for best TV provider. They offer more options, lower rates, better customer service experiences, and they nearlyH match Xfinity in every category they didn’t outright beat them in. However, if you’re looking to do some serious bundling, Xfinity may deserve a second look. The great perks and lower rates may be worth the slightly lower quality of service.

Overall Winner

We supplied the data; now, the decision is yours.

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