Cable vs. Satellite: Reliability

The cable versus satellite television debate often centers on reliability and clarity of television service. Ask your cable TV company and they'll be happy to tell you that they are the most reliable television service on the planet. They will also pleasantly tell you that satellite TV is most unreliable because their signals, coming from space, can be affected by weather, geography (mountains, valleys, etc.), and that residential satellite TV signals and dishes are generally unreliable. In the early days of direct to home satellite television service did experience some variations in quality of reliability. But this is no longer true.

If you speak with the two predominant space originated services, DirecTV Satellite or DISH Satellite TV, they will happily tell you all you need to know to decide that they, not cable TV channels and service, provide the most reliable television service available on Earth. They might further explain that cable television is less reliable than satellite TV channels because the quality of their service depends on the efficiency and condition of their miles of cable. They can cite some statistics showing that cable TV lines, like telephone and electric cables, can be brought down by weather events.

Likewise, since the cable companies receive satellite TV signals first, and then must redirect them to viewers, the extra link in the chain also provides opportunity for problems. The reality is that both cable TV and satellite TV service are reliable. Unless your home suffers a loss of power, line problems, satellite dish outages, or cable transmission problems, your satellite TV signal or cable TV channels should be there when you want them.