Two television giants battle for your living room

3 out of 5 stars
Monthly price
Available channels
Xfinity TV
Xfinity TV
3.8 out of 5 stars
Monthly price
Available channels
Michael Archambault
Sr. Writer, TV & Streaming
Read More
August 26, 2021
7 min read

Choosing the best television service for your home can appear daunting with so many choices available, but don’t fret. We’re here to help you find the perfect solution for you, and to do that, we’re taking a deep dive into DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV.

Let’s find out which of these two television providers is the best match for your needs.

How do DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV compare?
Max DVR hoursUnlimited HD hrs.300 HD hrs.

*Data effective 8/26/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

Find the best cable providers in your area.
Xfinity's 3 for 1 bundle

Xfinity's 3 for 1 Bundle gives you unlimited internet, a free Flex 4K streaming TV box, and one Mobile Unlimited line.

With no contract requirement, a two-year price guarantee, and access to Peacock Premium, this is a pretty sweet bundle.

How much are DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV’s packages

Elderly couple watching Xfinity TV with daughter

Xfinity TV appears cheaper at first but includes more hidden fees

Compared to DIRECTV STREAM, Xfinity TV starts at a much lower price, and its most expensive package includes nearly one hundred more channels at what appears to be a fraction of the cost.

With many cable packages, the price you first see isn’t the bottom line, so it’s essential that you dig a bit deeper under the surface to find the true price.

However, Xfinity TV isn’t as cheap as it seems up front. Once we explore the service’s additional fees, you’ll see that Xfinity TV also comes out much higher than first expected.

The short answer is that both services are around the same prices once all fees are included, but Xfinity TV does give you a few more channels for your money.

TV channel count
ENTERTAINMENT$54.99/mo. + taxes for 2 mos*65+
CHOICE$74.99/mo. + taxes for 2 mos*90+
PREMIER$134.99/mo. + taxes for 2 mos140+
Data effective 11/11/21. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* Offer ends 6/19/22. Available in select sales channels only. New customers only. Service subject to DIRECTV STREAM terms and conditions (see Requires high-speed internet. Minimum internet speed of 8Mbps per stream recommended for optimal viewing. Compatible device reqd. Residential U.S. only (excl. P.R. & U.S.V.I.).
DIRECTV STREAM Device avail. for $5/mo. on 24-month installment agmt for well-qualified customers. Others pay $120 upfront for device. Taxes due at sale. See details.

If you think that $139.99 a month is a huge pile of cash for 140+ channels, you aren’t wrong. DIRECTV STREAM has among the priciest packages currently available.

Even on the less expensive end, DIRECTV STREAM charges a healthy amount of cash for only 65+ channels, making it a poor choice for anyone looking to get the best bang for their buck.

How much is Xfinity TV?
TV channel count
Popular TV$49.99/mo.125+
Ultimate TV$59.99/mo.185+
Data effective 02/17/22. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
for the first 12 mos with 1-Year Agreement. Includes $10/mo. automatic payments and paperless billing discount.

Xfinity TV’s plans do appear much more affordable at first than DIRECTV STREAM’s offerings, but they are surrounded by additional fees that we explore below.

Additionally, for Xfinity TV’s Popular and Ultimate plans, a 1-year contract is required. If you try to cancel your contract early, you’ll find yourself hit with early termination fees (more below).

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV contracts

Unlike DIRECTV STREAM, which doesn’t require contracts, if you wish to save a few extra bucks on your service you’ll be roped into a contract.

Xfinity TV’s Popular and Ultimate plans are the prices mentioned above, only if you opt for the company’s yearly contract. Attempting to leave the contract early could result in pricey early termination fees of $10 per remaining month on your plan.

Can you avoid early termination fees?

Maybe. We’ve put together a quick guide on how to avoid all those pesky fees when you’re ready to swap TV providers.

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV hidden fees

While Xfinity TV appears to be a bargain initially, the company includes some of the most expensive additional fees that we’ve seen. If you are considering Xfinity TV for your home, be sure to keep an eye out for any other fees that will increase your monthly cost by using the chart provided below.

On the other hand, DIRECTV STREAM is quite transparent with little to no hidden fees.

Additionally, you don’t need to purchase a TV box from DIRECTV STREAM if you already have a media streaming box. DIRECTV STREAM can stream directly via Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast, Apple TV, Android, iOS, and select Samsung televisions.

If you wish to purchase a TV box from DIRECTV STREAM, you can either purchase it upfront for $120 or over 24 months at 0% APR for $5 per month.

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV Fees
First TV box$7.50/mo.Up to $5.00/mo.
Additional TV box$9.95/mo.Up to $5.00/mo.
DVR fee$0.00-$20.00/mo.Up to $10.00/mo.
Broadcast feeUp to $24.95/mo.N/A
Regional sports feeUp to $14.45/mo.N/A
Early termination fee$10.00 for every month left on your contract N/A

*Data effective 8/26/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

If we compare Xfinity TV and DIRECTV STREAM’s base packages, the two come out to a near equal price after adding on Xfinity TV’s additional charges. However, Xfinity TV still gives you over twice as many channels, making it a better deal for the money.

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV bundles

An over the shoulder shot of a woman watching a movie on her cell phone

Deals for those seeking out both TV and internet

Bundling can help bring down the cost of your bill.

When you choose to bundle multiple services, DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity offer deals that bring down your monthly cost. As you’ll likely want an internet connection for your home, bundling DIRECTV STREAM or Xfinity TV is a smart way to keep everything in one place.

DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity both offer a plethora of bundles available, so we’ve highlighted some of the favorites that we think would be beneficial to you.

Comparison of DIRECTV STREAM bundles
Monthly price*
Download speeds

AT&T Internet + Entertainment



940 Mbps

AT&T Internet + Choice



940 Mbps

AT&T Internet + Ultimate



940 Mbps

*Data effective 8/26/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

DIRECTV STREAM and internet bundles are more expensive when initially compared to Xfinity, but the company offers much faster internet speeds.

AT&T’s internet speeds are perfect for homes that love streaming online content from services such as Netflix or HBO Max. It’s also an excellent choice for families with video gamers in the house.

Comparison of Xfinity bundles
Monthly price*
Download speeds

Choice TV Select Double Play



100 Mbps

X1 Saver Pro+ Double Play



200 Mbps

X1 Preferred Pro+ Double Play



600 Mbps

*Data effective 7/27/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

As with Xfinity’s TV bundles, it is essential to remember that prices may not be as low as you see once all hidden costs are added on top of the bundle prices.

Additionally, while Xfinity might make a good choice for some households, those requiring faster internet plans may want to look elsewhere. While Xfinity’s internet speeds are decent, AT&T with DIRECTV STREAM offers speedier selections perfect for homes with dozens of gadgets.

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV channels

Both television services offer a healthy selection of channels

If you’re looking to binge-watch television, you won’t feel dissatisfied with either DIRECTV STREAM or Xfinity. Both services provide the most popular channels available.

Before purchasing your selected package, make sure that any specific channels you love are included. Not every package with either provider offers the same content.

Here are a few popular channels and their availability on each service.

DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV channels
Xfinity TV
















The CW



*Data effective 8/26/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

For more details on channels provided with each package, we recommend you check out our full reviews of both DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV.

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV premium channels

If you’re a movie addict, you’ll feel at home on either service, as both DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV offer a host of premium channels.

Both DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV offer premium channels at similar prices, with a slight edge being given to DIRECTV STREAM. However, we don’t think the prices are different enough to influence your purchasing decision.

We’d also like to note that select DIRECTV STREAM packages, such as Choice and Ultimate, include three free months of HBO Max. 

DIRECTV STREAM and Xfinity TV premium channels
Xfinity TV prices
















*Data effective 8/26/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

DIRECTV STREAM vs. Xfinity TV sports channels

For many customers, a service’s available sports channels can be the main deciding factor for purchasing a plan.

Xfinity TV does offer a more extensive selection of sports channels, but that doesn’t mean DIRECTV STREAM is left in a spot of shame as it still provides a healthy offering.

We recommend picking the network with the sports channels that you intend to watch, rather than which network simply offers more.

Xfinity’s Popular TV package

  • FS1
  • Stadium
  • NBC Sports Network
  • PAC-12 Network
  • Tennis Channel
  • Golf Channel

Xfinity’s Ultimate TV package

  • CBS Sports Network
  • ESPNews
  • FS2
  • MLB Network
  • NBA TV
  • NFL Network
  • NHL Network
  • Olympic Channel
  • Outdoor Channel
  • SEC Network
  • Sportsman Channel
  • TUDN
  • Zona Futbol

DIRECTV STREAM Entertainment package

  • ESPN2 HD
  • FS1
  • NBC Sports Network

DIRECTV STREAM Choice package

  • Big Ten Network HD
  • ESPNews HD
  • MLB Network HD
  • NBA TV
  • Tennis Channel HD
  • TVG

DIRECTV STREAM Ultimate and Premier packages

  • CBS Sports Network
  • FS2
  • Golf Channel
  • NHL Network
  • Olympic Channel
  • Sportsman Channel


Man pointing remote toward TV and DVR

A DVR allows you to record your favorite programs so that you can watch them later at a more convenient time. It is perfect for individuals with busy days or those who work at night and can’t catch the shows or events they want to watch.

There is no doubt that out of the two providers, DIRECTV STREAM offers the best DVR solution.

With Xfinity TV, you’ll find yourself paying around $15 a month for a limited DVR (hours). However, for only $10 a month, DIRECTV STREAM gives you access to a cloud DVR with unlimited recording time.

DVR details
Xfinity TV

DVR storage space

Cloud DVR: 20–Unlimited hours

Xfinity DVR: 300-600 hours

Set-top box price

Up to $5.00/mo

Up to $5.00/mo

Additional set-top box price

Up to $5.00/mo


DVR fee

Free or $


*Data effective 8/26/2021. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

If you don’t want to shell out any money, DIRECTV STREAM will still provide you with 20 hours of recording time. Xfinity, on the other hand, doesn’t offer anything free.

Recap: Two respectable TV options

Person watching television

One has got the channels, and the other has the deals

Not all versus pieces we write have a strict winner. Sometimes two services have their balances of pros and cons where the best option will depend on precisely what you need.

Xfinity TV is likely the best option for those seeking a more traditional television service, even after its hidden fees. When placed head to head, Xfinity TV simply offers more channels than DIRECTV STREAM.

However, you’ll want to be careful with Xfinity TV. As you add on more packages and features, the service can quickly become more expensive than its competition.

We also love that DIRECTV STREAM can operate on the streaming devices you already have at home, eliminating the need for a dedicated cable box.

  • Pricing and contracts: DIRECTV STREAM doesn’t require any contracts, and its pricing is more upfront than Xfinity without hidden fees. However, many customers will still benefit from Xfinity’s pricing structure as it will typically include more channels in the end. We also don’t mind Xfinity’s contract too much as it only lasts a single year and does give you a sizable discount of $20-30 a month.
  • Channels: When it comes to the most popular channels, both services are likely to have them. However, Xfinity TV does offer more channels, in the end, so be sure to check both services for any more niche channels you might be interested in.
  • Sports channels: For sports fans, Xfinity TV comes through in the end with the most sports options, but DIRECTV STREAM still offers a healthy selection.
  • DVR: Out of the gate, DIRECTV STREAM provides you with 20-hours of free recording time, and it only costs $10 to upgrade to unlimited recording time. However, Xfinity TV is more stingy, and you’ll find yourself paying $15 a month for 600 hours of storage time.
Now that you know, here are your next steps.
Directv Stream
3.5 out of 5 stars


3.8 out of 5 stars

Comcast Xfinity TV Service Review

Michael Archambault
Written by
Michael Archambault
Michael was born a geek, always interested in technology and how it affects the world around us. He has spent the last eight years writing about consumer and business tech for some of the world’s top brands and publications, including Samsung, Skyword, Digital Trends, Lifewire, and DPReview. Michael graduated from the New York Institute of Technology, earning a BFA in Communications and Media Production. When he’s not writing on, you’ll find Michael spinning a vinyl record, reading a good mystery novel, or hanging out with one of his cats (which has yet to turn him completely into an eccentric cat-man).

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