If you want to watch German TV from the US, you need to check out shift TV. We used to subscribe to Dish Network’s German channels, but we had a lot of problems with our SuperDish and weren’t very happy with the selection of shows.
Shift TV is like having online access to a super TiVo device that’s in Germany. You have access to 20 channels. Depending on the subscription you buy, you get up to 20 hours of recording time. Once shows are recorded, you can either stream them to your computer or download them for watching later. Once you delete a show (after watching or downloading), that time is available for more recordings.
The video quality isn’t as good as Dish Network’s, but the overwhelming program selection and 100% availability easily make up for that. And it costs less–one year paid up front is 59.99 Euros. I don’t know if this service will be around in year, but we’ve been using it for over 3 months now and love it. You have your choice of made-in-Germany programming, overdubbed American programming, sports, and lots of kid’s shows.
You can even sign up for a free trial account that has 2 hours of recording time (but you can’t record shows at night until you pay and then prove that you’re over 18 years of age). So, there’s no reason not to try it!
Update: we’re still going strong with shift.tv!