I want satellite TV w/o phone hookup-am I screwed?

I am at the verge of going for a satellite TV option (DirectTV, dishNetwork etc).

But doing some research has revealed a troubling (for me) stumbling block.

My TV room is on a slab on the west side of my house. There are no phone lines there, nor do I ever intend to run one there, since there is no need, as we have cordless phones, based in the kitchen.

I hear that these satellite services want a phone hookup to the receiver, presumably to see what “pay-per-view” items you want, and to bill accordingly.

I never ever intend to use a pay-per-view option, and I don’t ever plan on subscribing to a TiVo like service.

Are the satellite services going to tell me “tough crap-get a phone line”?. The whole reason for me to go satellite is because it would be cheaper than my cable service. If I have to get an extra phone line, the savings are gone; indeed, it’ll cost me more.

So, am I screwed?

You can get a wireless jack that plugs into any standard electrical outlet at Radio Shack for about $40.00. However, if you truly don’t plan to ever order anything, you can probably just tell the satellite company that you do have a jack there and they’ll never know the difference. The receiver only uploads info if you’ve purchased something, so if you don’t purchase anything, the issue of the phone jack is moot.

I used to work for DishNetwork a few years back. If the technology hasn’t changed too much, a phone line is not mandatory to make the system work.

The phone line is so that new channels can be added, and you can order pay-per-view. I would suggest if you decide to get one that you hook the receiver up to a phone line every once in a while before you go to bed at night. (Just unhook it from your TV, and carry it to wherever the nearest jack may be.) The reciever will call in to the company in the wee hours and recieve any updates.

My girlfriend and I just got service from DishNetwork on four different TVs in our house; none of them are connected to a phone line. The guy who did the installation told us we could hook a receiver up to a jack if we ever wanted pay-per-view, but that we didn’t have to worry about it otherwise.

We have Direct TV. We just had the Direct TV Tivo hooked up a few days ago and I specifically asked the tech who installed it what would happen if we didn’t have it hooked up to a phone line since we are thinking about dumping our landline. He said a phone line is not necessary even for the Tivo. I don’t know if I beleive him, but I don’t know much about it.

I do know that you can order Pay-Per-View by just calling it in on a phone, so I am pretty sure you don’t have to have it hooked up to a phone line.

PS - the Tivo rocks, I can’t believe how long we have lived without it.

We use several of these Wireless Phone Jack for our DirectTV Tivo DVRs. They work great and have not caused any problems with our DSL.

My DirecTV box has not been hooked to a phone line in 4 years and it still works. PPV is the only thing that requires a phone line in current DirecTV systems.

Mine is not hooked up to a phone line either. If you really want PPV, you should be able to call the Customer Service number and order it.

On the Dish system PPV costs (I think) a buck more to call the number.The one time I ordered I just plugged in the phone line.Otherwise have never had it plugged in.Also upgraded my programming service without any need for a phone line.

From what I understand,everything you need to add on channels is contained in the receiver/smart card.It’s all beamed via satellite.

Sorry to piggyback:

I have no land line and never will again. My company gives me a stipend against my cell phone bill, I hardly every use it for personal use as I hate talking on the phone.

Is there aopther way to get channel updates and whatever else without the phone-line?

I’m fine with calling and paying an extra buck for a PPV for the few times I will ever use it, it will be more than economical as compared to a useless landline for $40 a month.

depending on the brand of cell phone you have, there are devices you can plug your cell phone into thand plug the other end into the phone lines in your house (I assume the wiring is there), and the phone lines in your house run off of the cell phone. I assume there would be a way to plug the box directly into this device.

Quick question for those who might know:

I moved August 1st and got a DirecTV system installed. I told the tech that PPV was not an issue, and that I wasn’t going to hook up a phone line. He said fine. He set up the system and it works fine.

Now, we also get local programming through DirectTV. For the first 6 weeks or so, the local shows showed up on the Guide. But around the middle of September all local channels reverted to “To Be Announced”. Is the local programming transmitted to my box through the phone line? Did I start out with a set period of “known” programs, after which it must be updated?

Or has everyone else’s local programming also reverted to “TBA”?

I just moved from Dish Network to Direct TV. The only time I hooked up the land line to Dish Network was for PPV, all other times it was unplugged. The system worked fine without it.

On Direct TV, same thing. After 3 months or so, no problems at all.

I will note the installer hooked the Receiver in the den up to the phone line and my DSL slowed to a halt. It took me several days to track down the problem (I didn’t know he hooked that receiver up to the land line).

pilot141: The listings come via satellite. I had the same thing happen to my local listings about the same time (mid-September), but unplugging the receiver and plugging it back in fixed the problem.

Pasta thanks, I’ll try that.

I’ve been using it for 3 years now but they’ve been having piracy problems lately so they’ve been pushing for all their users to hook up to the phone line. I use a Canadian version of Dish Network (Express Vu) and part of the usage agreement stipulates that you MUST have it plugged into a phone line. I have no phone line near my TV and be dammed if I am going to spend more money just to put one in or buy a wireless job just so I can watch TV.

I called customer service and explained my situation and he said it would be no problem… which is good. However, I wouldn’t be suprised if they change their tune and come back next year and demand it . I’ll then tell them to piss up a rope and cancel my subscription.

That being said, I haven’t had a problem yet after all these years.

Unless they have changed the 2nd generation of DirecTIVO receivers, you do need to connect a phone line every two weeks or so for TIVO to download program information. I get a message every two weeks that my TIVO needs to make a call (it can’t do it automatically since I don’t have the phone line connected all the time. Too far away from the wall jack.). I just connect a long phone line and tell the TIVO to make the phone call manually.

Have you checked the instructions?

Until Tivos start receiving program information from some sort of air transmission, they will need to make a phone call occasionally. How else do they know what’s on tv? They’re not magic.

Well, the DirecTiVo is hooked up to a satellite dish.

There are also various TV guide devices that get their information over the air. My RCA TV has “GuidePLUS” built in, which delivers program listings, news articles, and sports updates, along with a healthy dose of ads, all pulled from the PBS data stream at night. RCA also makes a digital video recorder that gets its information from GuidePLUS.

There’s even a new service called MovieBeam that delivers pay-per-view movies over the same type of air interface. I can’t imagine how long it must take to download a movie, but apparently the device comes with 100 movies preloaded and downloads up to 10 new ones each week.

I’d just like to note that even if you do order PPV by calling customer service, you’ll still need to hook up your receiver to a phone line at some point in order to clear the PPV info from your smart card. I used to work at Dish Network and a lot of people would call in because their smart card was full and they couldn’t order another PPV until it was cleared. However, if you never order PPV, the phone line is not needed.