dslreports logo
    All Forums Hot Topics Gallery


how-to block ads

Search Topic:
share rss forum feed



Thinking of switching from WOW to AT&T

I'm thinking of switching from WOW to AT&T Uverse. A couple of AT&T folks were walking the neighborhood last night and stopped by to chat. They came at an opportune time as I've been less than pleased with WOW lately. The costs seem like they'll be pretty much a wash - AT&T may even come in a bit cheaper. Here's my situation: We currently have 7 cable boxes, 6 of which are HD. I also have my internet and phone through WOW.

What I like about the AT&T offering:

1 - Record up to 4 programs at the same time with the ability to play them back on any TV.

2 - I've heard there is an app for my phone to both setup recordings AND watch them on the phone - that's pretty cool.

3 - NFL network is available with AT&T

My questions about the AT&T U Verse offering:

1 - I've heard of bandwidth issues. For example, compressed HD image isn't REALLY High Definition.

2 - I've also heard that you can only record ONE HD program at a time, NOT 4. True?

3 - I've heard that internet usage in the house can affect the TV image quality.

4 - Can I watch 4 HD programs at the same time on different TV's?

This sounds good, but I want to make sure I know the capabilities and limitations before I sign up. I appreciate your replies!




Hazelwood, MO
Many of your questions depend on how close the fiber is to your home and how they can provision your profile. I think you will have a hard time pinning that down until they do an install and provisioning.

I currently can watch 2 HD or record 2 HD. I can't do any more than that in any combination. However, I only have 4 TV's and only 2 are setup for HD. It does piss me off though when I am recording one and someone may be watching one or 2 HD are recording and then I turn on my bedroom TV (HD) to watch something and I am warned about too many HD feeds.

I, personally, have not noticed the internet effecting the image quality. However, I have noticed that during hockey games it has a hard time keeping up sometimes and that is irrelevant to internet usage.

And for the record, any compressed HD image is really no longer HD quality you just can hope that it does a decent job of presenting it to you. I personally think uVerse HD is good. Not great, but good especially compared to some of the Charter or Direct pictures I have seen.


Thanks for the response. I called and spoke with someone (okay, 3 different people) at AT&T, and here's what I got from them.

Basically, there is a "4 HD" limit, however you want to cut that up. You can watch up to 4 HD programs at the same time, or record 2 and watch 2. The internet connection is not affected by this, nor does it affect this.

They couldn't tell me specifically how far my house is from the cross box, but they said that it shows that my house is eligible for the U450 package and the 24 Mbps internet, so I must be close by virtue of that. Not sure about that logic, but that's what they said.

I'm still weighing out the options.....I think cost-wise, it'll be a wash. There ARE some nice features with the AT&T offering, as long as it doesn't suck.

Thanks for your reply!


Lisle, IL
·AT&T U-Verse
Depending on what speed internet package, and which overall bandwidth profile you are on (sounds like you would be on the 32/5 overall bandwidth profile, as 4 HD and Max 24 internet are available), HD stream usage can affect internet speed

For example, if you do get Max 24 internet, and are using all 4 HD streams: You have a maximum of 32 Mbps for the entire service. IPTV has higher bandwidth priority than internet. Each HD stream uses ~5.7 Mbps. 4x5.7=22.8. 32-22.8=9.2. So basically, all 4 HD streams in use uses 22.8 Mbps. Take that away from 32 Mbps, that leaves 9.2 Mbps for Internet.

Also, keep in mind that there is a 4 Stream total limit of live, independent IPTV streams available. If you have 7 different TVs, that is something to keep in mind. Those 4 streams are for watching live and/or recording.

For example, you are recording 2 shows. That uses 2 streams. Another TV is watching another show. That is stream 3. Another TV is watching a 4th show. That is stream 4. At this point, the only things available for any other TVs would be any of those 4 streams presently in use, or anything already recorded. There is no access to a 5th (or beyond) live stream of IPTV

Also, you can only record 3 HD streams at any given time (the 4th stream can be recorded in SD). A 4th HD stream can be watched on any receiver OTHER than the DVR


Interesting.....I guess it would be a good idea to figure out if we ever REALLY have more than 4 TV's going at the same time, huh?

Thanks for response,



Fremont, OH
reply to ILpt4U
If you have voice with U-Verse that subtracts more bandwidth correct?

Buford, GA
Yes, but not appreciably. Voice streams are pretty small. A G.711 law encoded stream (same as POTS) uses a 64kbps stream, (8 kHz sampling frequency x 8 bits per sample).