Best Cable Companies and Satellite TV Providers in Tucson, AZ
Dec. 13, 2019, 12:13 a.m.
Get the most out of TV service by considering the reliability of your provider and the channels they offer. Our partners at ConsumerAffairs researched the best cable companies and satellite TV providers in Tucson to maximize entertainment value for your money.
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1610 W. Valencia Rd., Ste. 104
Tucson, AZ 85746
Starter package at 140+ channels
Get X1 TV Box for 500 GB of DVR storage & voice remote
Add-on channels available
Exclusive student offers available
5615 E. River Rd., Ste. 121D
Tucson, AZ 85750
Open 24 hours
Serves residents in
M-F: 8am - 5pm
Sat: 9am - 1pm
4756 E. Speedway Blvd.
Tucson, AZ 85712
M-Sun: 5am - 10pm
1570 E. Tucson Marketplace Blvd.
Tucson, AZ 85713
M-F: 10am - 9pm
Sat: 9am - 7pm
Sun: 12pm - 5pm
Serves residents in
M-Sun: 8am - 12am
333 N. Wilmot Rd., Ste. 340B
Tucson, AZ 85711
CenturyLink Prism TV
M-Sun: 8am - 6pm
Serves residents in
M-F: 6am - 8:30pm
Sat and Sun: 6am - 4pm
Serves residents in
Tucson, AZ 85248
Choosing a cable company or satellite TV provider in Tucson
There are several factors to consider when choosing a satellite or cable TV provider in Tucson. The cost of a package is important to many people and varies depending on the number of available channels, additional features and if you choose to bundle it with internet or phone service. Most companies offer a discount for services bundled together on one contract, but your overall cost increases.
Cable and satellite TV companies in Tucson offer new customer discounts that reduce prices for the first few months or year of the contract. This saves money in the short term, but be careful to understand the company’s pricing before committing — you may find your rates unexpectedly increasing in the second year of your contract.
Before signing an agreement with a satellite TV or cable company in Tucson, check to see if outages are frequent in your area. If you have neighbors with cable or satellite TV service, ask which company they use and if they’re satisfied with the service.
Types of cable and satellite TV
Cable and satellite TV companies in Tucson offer several types of channel packages. Some of the most popular are:
Basic cable: This is the most affordable cable TV package and comes with local channels, national broadcast networks like ABC and NBC and a few other stations.
Expanded basic: One step above basic cable, expanded basic channel packages includes 30 to 50 channels, including the most popular pay channels like Disney, ESPN and cable news networks.
Premium: For an additional monthly fee, premium channel packages provide a wide variety of networks, including special-interest channels like HISTORY and Food Network. These packages may also include movie channels like HBO, Starz and Cinemax.
Video-on-demand: This is a feature of cable or satellite service that allows you to rent movies and TV programs from the comfort of your home. Providers charge for the newest movies, but there is also a wide selection of free video-on-demand titles customers can access.
Cable vs. satellite TV
Cable and satellite companies in Tucson provide similar services, but cable uses a physical cable to transmit a signal, while satellite uses a wireless signal. This means satellite TV is widely available but also suffers from more weather-related reception problems than cable.
Equipment & Installation
Only in specific service areas
Starting at $60 - $75 per month (basic cable available for $25 - $30)
Technician installs cable box in your home
Physical connection provides more reliability in any weather
Provides many local and network stations, has a higher cost per station
Anywhere in the U.S.
Starting at $45 - $65 per month
Requires technician to install a south-facing dish on the exterior of your home
May suffer outages during severe or cloudy weather
Usually offers more HD channels; some companies have sports-specific packages
Alternatives to cable and satellite TV
Internet-based television services are becoming popular with many Tucson residents. These services do not require physical equipment from the company, but you do need internet access and compatible devices, such as smart TVs, smartphones or tablets.
Some of these services, such as DIRECTVNOW and YouTube TV, offer live television and broadcast major U.S. networks the same way satellite and cable companies do. Others, like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, do not have live programming but allow you to access an on-demand library of shows and movies. Most internet-based television providers do not require contracts.
How much does cable and satellite TV cost in Tucson?
The national average cost of expanded basic cable is about $65 per month, but prices in Tucson vary depending on features and the number of channels you receive. Basic cable usually costs between $25 and $30, but packages with hundreds of channels and bundled internet service cost up to $150 or more.
For satellite TV, the most popular providers in Tucson are DIRECTV and DISH, both of which offer service on two-year contracts. DIRECTV costs $35 to $110 per month, but monthly rates increase in the second year of the contract. DISH is $59.99 to $89.99 per month with locked prices.
Installation can cost up to $200, but some companies waive installation fees during promotions. Satellite and cable TV companies may also charge equipment rental fees between $5 and $15 per device each month.
Mediacom has been in business since 1996 and offers more than 200 HD channels, internet, in-home WiFi, TiVo and Xtreme Phone. The company provides night and weekend appointments, 30-minute appointment windows and a 90-day satisfaction guarantee. Tucson customers praise Mediacom’s customer service, but some residents note instances of slow internet service.