Best Cable Companies and Satellite TV Providers in Boise, ID
Aug. 26, 2019, 5:03 p.m.
Whether you watch reality TV, sports, news or a binge-worthy series, having a reliable cable provider ensures you never miss your favorite programming. Our partners at ConsumerAffairs researched the best cable companies and satellite TV providers in Boise to help you pick a winner for your TV-watching habits.
Everyone deserves to make thoughtful, informed purchase decisions. The local guides provided on this website are free for consumers. KIVI TV may receive compensation from our partners. Learn more.
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Choosing a cable company or satellite TV provider in Boise
When it comes to choosing a cable company or satellite TV provider in Boise, there are a few things to take into consideration. The channel selection, cost, contract requirements and your ability to bundle cable with your home phone or internet help determine which provider to choose.
Cable TV companies and satellite TV providers in Boise usually provide customers with a variety of channel packages or plans from which to choose. The more channels and features available, the higher the monthly cost. If premium channels such as HBO and Starz are important to you, make sure the provider you choose offers these options.
Additional features offered by cable companies in Boise include the ability to record a show and watch it later with DVR. Packages may also include connecting multiple televisions or apps that allow you to watch TV on the go, streaming channels to your smartphone, tablet or laptop. Narrow your options by carefully considering what you want to watch and how you want to watch it.
Ask friends and neighbors which provider they use and what they like or dislike about the service. Check the frequency of outages, especially weather-related outages. Sometimes, reception can be compromised when it is cloudy outside.
Types of cable and satellite TV
Between channel selection, bundle options, optional equipment and costs, there are many choices when it comes to selecting a cable or satellite TV service in Boise. You might start by looking at channel packages and narrowing your choices that offer the programming you consider essential.
Cable and satellite TV channel packages
Basic cable packages feature the most standard channels available through the airways. This includes local channels and news broadcasts such as PBS, CBS and NBC. These are generally the same channels you receive with an antenna.
Extended basic package
Extended basic channel packages add a few of the most popular channels, such as ESPN or CNN.
Premium channel packages are designed to give TV watchers more options and a broader channel selection. If you want access to the higher-quality premium channels, you can expect to pay at least $100 a month.
Basic cable is a great option for those who don't want to spend much money on cable but still want access to news and local programming. Premium cable is a better option for those willing to pay for specific TV shows and channels.
Some providers in Boise allow you to choose premium channels a la carte, typically costing between $12 and $15 per channel per month. Other service providers allow you to bundle multiple premium channels at a reduced cost.
Cable vs. satellite TV
While the channel package you choose depends on how much television you watch and which channels you prefer, deciding between cable and satellite TV involves considering availability, reception and required equipment. Both cable and satellite come with pros and cons.
Type of Service
Small cable box
Simple, one-time installation
Costs more per channel
Must live in company’s service area
Available in rural areas
Generally better HD quality
Requires dish installation
Weather can cause service interruptions
What is internet-based cable?
Despite the commonly used name, internet-based cable does not require cables or installation. Internet television providers such as YouTube TV, Hulu and DIRECTVNOW stream television services over the internet. Unlike traditional cable and satellite services, internet television requires using an app on a smart TV or device.
These services offer different channel tiers and may allow you to add interest-specific channel packages, such as additional sports or movies channels. You can also access television through any compatible device, including smartphones, tablets and laptops.
Internet-based television packages can cost much less than premium cable options, typically ranging anywhere between $50 and $75 a month for access to some of the most popular TV channels.
How much does cable and satellite TV cost in Boise?
The average cable or satellite TV customer pays between $85 and $100 per month for service. Basic cable programming can cost anywhere from $15 to $25 a month, although you can often get these channels for free with an antenna. Premium cable can run to more than $100 a month, especially if you add on multiple premium channels.
There are generally two options to choose from for satellite TV in Boise: DIRECTV and DISH. While both satellite TV providers earn high ratings for their channel selection and reliability, DIRECTV seems to be a better option for sports lovers. It has exclusive rights to packages covering sports, such as the company’s NFL SUNDAY TICKET package.
If you are not an avid sports fan, DISH may be a better option. The company is known for the industry-leading Hopper 3 DVR system that records up to 16 programs at once. If you prefer to record and watch your shows on your schedule, DISH offers the most flexibility.
Both companies offer their first receiver for free, but to access the programming on all of the TVs in your house, each TV needs a receiver. You can purchase additional receiver is from both companies for anywhere between $7 and $10 each per month. DISH charges a $12 per month home DVR fee for the ability to record and watch your favorite shows on your schedule.
When comparing rates for cable and satellite TV companies, be sure to read the fine print. Many companies in Boise offer two-year contracts with reduced rates in the first year that drastically increase in the second year. Ask the company what the total cost over the life contract is before making any commitments.
CTC has been a pioneer in technology for the Boise area since 1905. Today, the company prides itself on crystal-clear reception thanks to fiber optic lines. The company also offers high-speed internet service that reaches 1 GB. Boise customers report being satisfied with the friendly customer service, rapid response times and cable package options.
A+ Wireless Solutions
Founded in 2003, A+ Wireless Solutions specializes in cable and internet options for both residential and commercial properties in the Boise area. Customers appreciate the quick installation process, friendly and personable customer service and the wide variety of channel options. The company is not a television provider, but it partners with satellite TV companies.
A+ Satellite is a locally owned and operated, full-service retailer that partners with major satellite networks to provide the options that work best for your viewing preference. Boise residents report high satisfaction with the personal touch offered by the customer service representatives and technicians, and many people praise the company’s affordable prices.
Our partners independently research and analyze the companies mentioned in our guides and work with subject matter experts to add valuable information that helps consumers make smart purchase decisions. Our partners will not include companies on these guides that do not meet specific quality standards. The compensation we receive from our partners may impact how and where companies appear on our site, including the order in which they appear.
Our partners independently research companies, and use editorial discretion to award companies with special recognition (i.e. Best Value) based on their staff’s judgement or subject matter expert’s judgement. Our partners do this to help you identify companies that will meet your specific buying needs, and do not receive compensation for these designations.