Dish Network recently launched its internet TV service, Sling TV. The service lets customers watch three simultaneous streams that include sports, entertainment, and local TV programming. Single streams bring Disney and ESPN, but the package does not have Fox channels. Also, for subscribers of the multi-streaming service, Disney and ESPN content are not included in the package.
Sling TV is being pitched as a cheaper alternative to pay-TV, as a means for Dish to offset subscriber losses towards cord-cutting. They are managing to do just that, albeit to a small degree. The takeaway is that Dish is putting substantial focus on streaming services to bring in more customers and stay afloat in the TV arena.
The Original Service
Dish Network is one of the two leading satellite service providers in the country, with around 14 million customers, as of December 2015. Its main competition comes from DirecTV, which beats it in the area of NFL coverage. Nevertheless, Dish scores better with regard to the number of channels offered at an affordable price, including packages such as America’s Top 120, America’s Top 200, and America’s Top 250. There is also a standing first-year savings offer, and a two-year price guarantee.
Dish already has the best technology on offer to its traditional pay-TV subscribers, in the form of the Hopper 3 DVR. It allows viewing 4K content in a split-mode, through the use of 16 tuners built into it. Known as the Sports Bar Mode, this feature splits your screen into four quadrants, letting you choose which of these the audio comes from at any given time. You can stream movies from Netflix, and had these pop up right next to DVR recordings and rentals.
The latest DVR holds support for up to six Joey boxes, which allow connecting to separate TVs in the house. Hopper 3 does not bring any upfront cost, as long as you are paying the $15 “whole-home DVR” fee. Each of the Joey boxes comes at $7. The Hopper 3 remote has most of the same layout and functionality as before, using a radio connection to control the set-top box, so you don’t need a line of sight while pressing buttons.