DIRECTV Streaming Review 2023

Does DIRECTV's streaming service deliver the ultimate live TV streaming experience?

3 out of 5 stars
  • pro
    Access to over 150 channels
  • pro
    Offers must-have sports and premium movie options
  • con
    Expensive compared to other streaming providers
Michael Archambault
Sr. Writer, TV & Streaming
July 31, 2023
5 min read

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DIRECTV's streaming service, formerly known as DIRECTV STREAM, offers consumers a way to stream live television and sports via their home internet connection without the need to install a temperamental satellite dish or go through the process of wiring a home for cable.

With DIRECTV streaming, subscribers can access up to 150+ channels, and you can easily access it via DIRECTV's streaming set-top box or through your favorite streaming device

Let’s take a deep dive into streaming with DIRECTV to see if it’s the right TV service for your home.

How much does it cost to stream DIRECTV?

Pricey, but a solid selection of content

DIRECTV's streaming packages aren't necessarily cheap, but DIRECTV does offer a healthy selection of content to binge. Subscribers can start with the basic ENTERTAINMENT package or upgrade to CHOICE, ULTIMATE, or PREMIER for more channels and content-great if you’re a sports fan or want to watch the latest Blockbusters.

For those interested in Max (formerly HBO Max), the service is included in the PREMIER plan. Both of DIRECTV's CHOICE and ULTIMATE streaming plans include Max at no additional cost for three months with an additional charge per month after that.

If you’re looking for a more affordable yet still well-rounded TV streaming service, we recommend that you also look at one of our favorite options—fuboTV.

DIRECTV streaming packages comparison
TV channel count
ENTERTAINMENT$64.99/mo. + tax*75+
CHOICE™$84.99/mo. + tax*105+
ULTIMATE$109.99/mo. + tax*140+
PREMIER$154.99/mo. + tax*150+
* Price subj. to change for new and existing customers.

What other costs are associated with DIRECTV streaming?

DIRECTV's streaming service has done a great job of eliminating contracts and hidden fees, so you shouldn't find any surprises hitting your bill each month. Aside from adding premium networks, sports, or international content, DIRECTV's streaming Cloud DVR is one charge to consider.

If you want to record your favorite TV programs and movies when you aren’t around, DIRECTV's streaming Cloud DVR allows you unlimited storage (with the exception of 30 episodes max per show) for nine months.

So, if you'd like to upgrade from the included 20-hour DVR to unlimited, expect a $10 per month fee.

Further on in our review, we’ll dive into more detail surrounding DIRECTV's streaming device but know that it will cost you $5/month over 24-months or $120 upfront if needed. We believe that most subscribers won’t need/want the streaming device, so keep reading.

What channels does DIRECTV streaming have?

A vast library of content, if you’re willing to pay for it

Selecting the right DIRECTV package for streaming is essential, as you neither want to be underwhelmed by the content or overpaying for channels that you’ll never watch.

While the ENTERTAINMENT package includes over 75+ channels, users can step up to the CHOICE, ULTIMATE, or PREMIER packages to obtain more channels.

Be sure to check DIRECTV's official website for a complete channel lineup.

ENTERTAINMENT Package ($64.99/mo.)

  • Animal Planet
  • BBC America
  • Cartoon Network
  • CNBC
  • Discovery Channel
  • Disney Junior
  • Food Network
  • Freeform
  • FX
  • Hallmark Channel
  • HGTV
  • Lifetime
  • National Geographic
  • TBS
  • Univision
  • USA

CHOICE Package ($84.99/mo.)

  • ACCN
  • BTN
  • Cheddar News
  • CNBC World
  • Cooking Channel
  • Game Show Network
  • IFC
  • Nick Jr.
  • Nicktoons
  • Tastemade

ULTIMATE Package ($109.99/mo.)

  • BBC World News
  • Destination America
  • Discovery Family Channel
  • DIY Network
  • FX Movie
  • Lifetime Movie Network
  • MTV Classic
  • Nat Geo Wild
  • Oxygen True Crime
  • STARZ Encore™
  • Universal Kids

PREMIER Package ($154.99/mo.)

  • Hallmark Movies & Mysteries
  • Max
  • STARZ®

*Data as of 02/07/2023. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

Which premium channels can you live stream with DIRECTV?

DIRECTV streaming offers a selection of some of the most popular premium entertainment channels including Max™, CINEMAX, SHOWTIME®, STARZ®, and MGM+.

Each premium channel will cost you an additional monthly fee, as shown below, but can be a movie lover’s best friend.

DIRECTV's streaming premium channel pricing
Movies Extra Pack$5/mo.

*Data as of 02/07/2023. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

Which sports channels can you stream with DIRECTV?

Currently, the only sports channel available as an add-on is NBA LEAGUE PASS Premium for $19.99/mo. This is great for basketball fans but not so great for everyone else.

Sports fans will need to consider stepping up to one of DIRECTV's more expensive monthly streaming packages to obtain everything they want to watch.


  • ESPN2 HD
  • FOX Sports (FS1)
  • MotorTrend HD

CHOICE Package

  • ACC Network HD
  • Big Ten Network HD
  • ESPNews HD
  • FanDuel TV
  • Golf Channel
  • MLB Network HD
  • NBA TV


  • CBS Sports Network
  • FOX Sports (FS2)
  • NHL Network
  • SEC Network

What about international channels?

Last, but certainly not least, DIRECTV's streaming packages offer several different international channel add-ons for consumers. The international channel add-on options currently include Brazilian, Korean, and Vietnamese. DIRECTV streaming also provides a package that broadcasts in both English and Spanish called Óptimo Más.

As with other add-ons, costs for international channels are monthly, in addition to your base package.

DIRECTV international channel pricing for streaming
ÓPTIMO MÁS™$74.99/mo. + tax*
KOREANDIRECT™$30.99/mo. + tax
VIETDIRECT™ PLUS$19.99/mo. + tax
BRAZILIANDIRECT™$29.99/mo. + tax
* Price subj. to change for new and existing customers.
WorldDirect a la carte packages require activation of qualifying base package.

Do I need DIRECTV's streaming device?

The simple answer is no

Since we're talking about DIRECTV's streaming service, you won’t be provided a traditional cable box to place under your television like you would for a satellite service. Subscribers can choose to either pay for DIRECTV's streaming device or use a streaming media device they already own.

DIRECTV's streaming service is currently compatible with Amazon Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Roku, Android TV, Samsung Smart TV, or Chromecast. If you already own one of the devices mentioned above, all you’ll need to do to get started is download the DIRECTV app from your device’s App Store and sign in.

For those on the go, DIRECTV's streaming service can also be accessed via an Android device, iPhone, iPad, or either the Safari or Chrome desktop web browser.

But how is DIRECTV's streaming device?

The first thing with DIRECTV's streaming device that stands out is the price at $120, or $5/month over 24-months.

At $120, the DIRECTV streaming device is one of the most expensive options available, barring the Apple TV.

One benefit of the streaming box is the included remote powered by Google. Not only does the DIRECTV remote mimic a more traditional television remote, but it also offers voice control built-in to quickly launch your apps, such as Disney+, or tune to your favorite channels.

The DIRECTV streaming device features support for 4K content and Dolby Atmos 5.1 surround sound, so you can enjoy your favorite content as though you were in the cinema.

While DIRECTV's streaming device is quite impressive, we have a hard time recommending it over one of the more popular options from the likes of Amazon, Apple, or Roku. Both Amazon and Roku offer less expensive devices and provide a superior app catalog with a larger selection of streaming services and video games.

Recap: Is streaming with DIRECTV worth it?

When it comes to DIRECTV streaming, we can’t help but talk about the price.

Overall, DIRECTV's streaming service does offer a compelling amount of content to watch whether you’re a serial TV fan, a sports fanatic, or a Blockbuster aficionado—quality is not the issue. But, with newer companies breaking ground in the streaming TV space, better-priced options are available.

For example, DIRECTV's PREMIER streaming package will cost you $155 and get you 150+ channels, plus 20 hours of Cloud DVR recording time.

However, on the opposite side of the fence, a service such as fuboTV will cost you $84.99 for their Elite package with 230+ channels, as well as 1,000 hours of Cloud DVR recording time.

Is streaming with DIRECTV worth the big dollars? It’s a compelling service, but overall, we think you could spend your money smarter elsewhere due to the high price. Other streaming TV services offer a comparable experience for much less of your hard-earned dollars.

Be sure to check out our guide featuring the best live TV streaming providers for more great options.

DIRECTV streaming packages comparison
TV channel count
ENTERTAINMENT$64.99/mo. + tax*75+
CHOICE™$84.99/mo. + tax*105+
ULTIMATE$109.99/mo. + tax*140+
PREMIER$154.99/mo. + tax*150+
* Price subj. to change for new and existing customers.
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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