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Years ago, DirecTV had a big lead over the cable companies, in product quality, service, and picture quality. In their products, they got complacent and stagnated. The cable company has just about caught up. Service wise again, DirecTV stagnated, and the cable companies for the most part got a lot better. Easy for them to do, considering how nightmarishly bad they used to be. With picture quality, DirecTV actually got much worse. They crammed more channels in, and are seemingly oblivious to the fact that the average screen size has gone up dramatically in the past five years. What looks fantastic on a 27" screen can look really bad on a 42" screen.

HD has been a bad thing for them too. They have had to spend billions just to try and catch up with cable there. I agree with most here, DirecTV doesn't suck, but the huge gap between them and the cable companies is about gone.
 
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