Do You Need the Internet For DIRECTV’s Genie?

DIRECTV’s HR44 Genie DVRs are super-duper. But there’s a lot of misinformation as to whether you “need” to connect them to the internet. You’ll hear different answers on different blogs and even from different DIRECTV people. Let’s take a look at the real answers and why there’s so much confusion. First, the bottom line answer:

All DIRECTV receivers will work fine even if they are not connected to the internet.

There, that wasn’t so hard, right? It’s a little more complicated than that, if you look at it step by step, and that’s what we’re about to do.

If your equipment was installed by DIRECTV, the installer will try to connect it to the internet.

DIRECTV’s own installers are only paid if they complete every aspect of the work. That includes connecting the equipment to the internet. There are two reasons for this. First and foremost, they want to make sure that you get all the features you want.

Another reason DIRECTV prefers connected receivers is that your receivers can send a message to DIRECTV if they think they are malfunctioning. The message is safe and anonymous, and there’s a setting at to turn off all tracking. If a customer service rep sees problems, they can take action, like forcing your receiver to reset itself in the middle of the night or even calling you to ask you’re seeing a problem.

If you’re not connected to the internet, some stuff won’t work.

DIRECTV’s internet-connected receivers give you all sorts of added function, such as:

  • Pandora streaming music
  • YouTube videos
  • Video on Demand
  • Team trackers, weather and other apps

and there will be even more coming in the next few months. These are popular features that rely on an internet connection. If they’re important to you, you’ll want to be connected.

In order to use DIRECTV’s GenieGo (formerly known as Nomad) to take your programming with you, you must be connected to the internet.

Also, you cannot order pay-per-view from the receiver without an internet connection or phone line attached to the receiver. (you don’t need both.) It will work the first time but after a few hours you won’t be able to order anything else. You can still order PPV online or over the phone and it will work without an internet or phone connection.

You see, there are a lot of benefits to being connected, and that’s why you’ll hear other sites saying your receivers “must” be connected. It’s not true. If you lose your internet service or just choose not to connect your receivers, they will work fine.

One more thing…

What we’re talking about is internet connection. In order for any whole-home viewing such as watching something from the DVR in the other room or using the C41 Genie Mini Client, your receivers must be connected to each other. This is automatic with all receivers using the Single-Wire Multiswitch system. If you are using a Genie or have only one line into your HR24 or older DVR, you’re using the Single-Wire Multiswitch.