DIRECTV Stream Review

Formerly AT&T TV, DIRECTV Stream has a variety of features to offer streaming subscribers.
by Margaret Smith — 

SOPA Images/LightRocket/via Getty Images

DIRECTV Stream -- previously known as AT&T TV -- is a live TV streaming service that allows viewers to stream all of their favorite television channels, while also offering a library of on-demand content. It's a great option for anyone looking to cut their cable while still enjoying their favorite channels. It's especially popular among regional sports fans, as it's one of the few streamers that offers access to the popular Bally Sports Networks.

Are you wondering whether DIRECTV Stream is right for you? Keep reading to learn the pros and cons of DIRECTV Stream, the top channels and features, and how it stacks up to the competition.

DIRECTV Stream Highlights

Pros Cons
Access to regional sports networks Expensive
20+ simultaneous streams Not compatible with gaming consoles or all smart TVs
Add-ons and different packages available to customize your service Fewer channels for the cheapest tier
Up to 65,000 on-demand titles Low number of cloud DVR hours

DIRECTV Stream compared to other TV streaming services

DIRECTV Stream Comparison

DIRECTV StreamHulu + Live TVYouTube TVSling TV
Starting monthly price $70/mo.$70/mo.$55/mo. for the first three months ($65/mo. afterwards)$35/mo.
Free trial length NoneNone14 daysThree days
Number of channels 65+ channels85+ channels85+ channels30+ channels
DVR storage hours 20 hours50 hoursUnlimited50 hours

*Streaming service package information accurate as of 01/18/2022

As you can see above, DIRECTV Stream falls short of some of its biggest competitors in a few key ways. First, DIRECTV has one of the highest starting price tags of the live TV streaming services in the table above. And to gain access to all the channels available, you'll have to pay an extra $70/mo. for an upgraded Premier package. 

DIRECTV Stream also doesn't have a free trial -- it's the only streaming service in our comparison without one. It also has fewer channels available in its basic plan, as well as fewer DVR hours. But DIRECTV Stream has a few key features that make it stand out among the rest (we'll cover those in later sections).

How much does DIRECTV Stream cost?

DIRECTV Stream comes with four different packages, meaning everyone can choose the plan that best fits their budget. The Entertainment package has a price tag of $70 and comes with about 65 channels. Next is the Choice package, which costs $85 and includes 90 channels, as well as access to regional sports networks, including Bally Sports and Yes Network. 

There's also the Ultimate package, which costs $95 and comes with 130 channels and access to regional sports networks. Finally, the Premier package has a price tag of $140 and offers more than 140 channels. It also includes HBO Max and Showtime. All of DIRECTV Stream's packages come with ads, and there is no ad-free option.

DIRECTV Stream channels and add-ons

DIRECTV Stream's plans have between 65 to 140 channels, depending on the package you choose. All plans come with popular channels like AMC, TNT, ESPN, HGTV, and more. They also include popular news channels like CNN and Fox News and sports channels like ESPN and Fox Sports. All three offer a variety of entertainment, family, news, sports, and movie channels, but the number of channels increases with each package.

One of the biggest selling points of DIRECTV Stream over some of its competitors is access to regional sports. Bally Regional Sports Networks are available with the Choice, Ultimate, and Premier packages.

Another major selling point of DIRECTV Stream packages is the access to various add-ons. The Entertainment, Choice, and Ultimate plans come with three months of free Showtime, Starz, Epix, and Cinemax. The Choice and Ultimate packages also include three free months of HBO Max. 

Finally, the Premier package offers free HBO Max and Showtime included for the entirety of your plan, as well as Epix included for the first three months. Once your add-on of choice's free trial ends, you can pay to add them to your plan going forward.

DIRECTV Stream top channels compared

Another perk of DIRECTV Stream is that it gives you access to all of your favorite local channels, including ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, PBS, and The CW. DIRECTV Stream is rivaled by only YouTube for the number of local channels it offers. These channels are available with all package tiers.

DIRECTV Stream Popular Channels

DIRECTV StreamHulu + Live TVYouTube TVSling TV
The CW X

DIRECTV Stream features

Simultaneous streams

DIRECTV Stream really stands out for the number of simultaneous streams available. You can only have two user profiles set up, which is lower than many other live TV streaming services. However, you can have an impressive 20 streams going at the same time in your home, with an additional three available outside of it. Your entire family can watch different shows at the same time without having to fight over the remote.

Regional Sports Networks

One of the features that viewers love most about DIRECTV Stream over its competitors is the access to regional sports. With the Choice, Ultimate, or Premier packages, you'll have access to Bally Sports Regional Sports Networks to watch all of your favorite local sporting events.

On-demand library

According to DIRECTV's website, the service comes with more than 60,000 on-demand movies and television episodes. While it doesn't have popular original titles like Netflix or Hulu, there are enough titles that everyone will find something for them.

DIRECTV Stream supported devices

You can watch DIRECTV Stream on many popular devices, one of which you probably already have in your home. You won't have to buy a new device to stream. Here's a complete list of DIRECTV Stream's supported devices:

  • DIRECTV Stream device

  • Amazon Fire TV (second generation or higher)

  • Amazon Fire TV Stick (second generation or higher)

  • Amazon Fire TV Edition Smart TV (second generation or higher)

  • Amazon Fire TV Cube

  • Android phones and tablets

  • iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touch

  • Apple TV (fourth generation or higher)

  • Safari browser

  • DirecTV StreamChrome browser

  • Chromecast built-in TV

  • Chromecast (second generation or higher)

  • Edge browser

  • Roku Streaming Stick

  • Roku Express

  • Roku Premiere

  • Roku Ultra

  • Roku 1, 2, 3, or 4

  • Roku TV (4K or non-4K)

  • Roku Smart Soundbar

  • Samsung Smart TV (2017 or newer)

It's important to note there are a few notable devices missing from this list, including gaming consoles and many smart TVs. If you use these devices and aren't willing to purchase another one, then DIRECTV Stream may not be right for you.

Is DIRECTV Stream worth it?

DIRECTV Stream has been around less than a year in its current form, but before that, it was called AT&T TV. It has plenty of channels and features to offer, but is it worth it?

Due to the high price tag and a limited number of channels for the basic plan (at least when compared to other competitors), DIRECTV Stream probably isn't worth it for everyone, especially when you compare it to other options. For example, Hulu + Live TV has a lower price tag and more channels, as well as access to Hulu's entire on-demand library, including many hit original titles. 

However, we do think DIRECTV Stream is worth it for anyone wanting access to Bally Sports Regional Sports Networks. These networks are hard to come by in other streaming services, and for true sports fans, the extra cost will be worth it for access to these channels.