After fee increase, Dish commits to three-year price lock

A Dish Network satellite dish.
A Dish Network satellite dish. (Photo by Cody Logan via Wikimedia Commons, Graphic by The Desk)

Dish Network says it is rolling out a three-year price guarantee that will allow customers to lock in a promotional rate for 36 months.

The move is being promoted as a way to curb inflation, though it comes several weeks after the company raised prices on its satellite and streaming customers due to a new programming agreement with the Walt Disney Company.

Brian Neylon, the group president at Dish, called the three-year price lock “a first in the industry,” and said it was meant to make Dish’s satellite rates “a little bit more predictable and stable.”

“It’s unmatched, and it’s a great value,” Neylon said.

Dish has offered similar promotions in the past, including a two-year price lock guarantee that affirmed customers would not see a rate increase for at least the first 24 months of their service.

Customers who termed out of their service promotion recently saw their bills go up after Dish inked a new carriage agreement with Disney for several networks, including ESPN, FX, Freeform and the Disney Channel. In October, Dish warned subscribers that most of its programming packages would go up by $5 a month. Dish currently has just over 7.6 million satellite subscribers, after losing around 183,000 customers during its most-recent financial quarter.

Price lock promotions are seen as a way to offer stability to bills as the cost of programming continues to increase. On Thursday, a Dish spokesperson said their three-year price lock promotion will only require a two-year commitment and applies to the company’s “America’s Top” packages, which start at $80 a month. That package is slightly more expensive than some streaming cable TV alternates, including Philo ($25 a month), Vidgo ($60 a month), YouTube TV ($65 a month) and Hulu with Live TV (soon to cost $75 a month).

Dish remains competitive with streaming cable TV alternatives in two respects: The company offers an Android-powered set-top box called the Hopper Plus that offers satellite channels and streaming services like Netflix, Disney Plus and Paramount Plus from a single platform. Dish also operates Sling TV, a streaming cable alternate, which recently raised its base programming packages to $40 a month.