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AT&T, Sling Media partner to allow 3G access on iPhone SlingPlayer

post #1 of 41
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AT&T announced Thursday that it would allow the SlingPlayer Mobile application for the iPhone to stream video over the wireless provider's nationwide 3G network.

Sling Media's SlingPlayer allows users to watch video recorded at home from anywhere on the go. Previously, the SlingPlayer Mobile application for the iPhone was limited to Wi-Fi-only access to streaming video, due to bandwidth concerns on the 3G network.

But AT&T revealed that it has worked with Sling Media to ensure the SlingPlayer Mobile application has been optimized to run on its high-speed 3G network. Sling Media created a new version of its application that conserves bandwidth for 3G data connections, and AT&T has been testing the new software since December. Thursday, AT&T revealed it has notified both Apple and Sling Media that the new, "optimized" application is acceptable for use on its 3G network.

"Just as we've worked with Sling Media in this instance, we look forward to collaborating with other developers so that mobile customers can access a wider, more bandwidth-sensitive, and powerful range of applications in the future," said Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets.

"Collaboration with developers like Sling Media ensures that all apps are optimized for our 3G network to conserve wireless spectrum and reduce the risk that an app will cause such extreme levels of congestion that they disrupt the experience of other wireless customers. Our focus continues to be on delivering the nation's most advanced mobile broadband experience and giving our customers the widest possible array of mobile applications."

Streaming video recorded at home requires the purchase of a Slingbox, which can be purchased direct from Sling Media at $179.99 for the Slingbox Solo, or $299.99 for the Slingbox Pro-HD. Slightly lower prices are available from Amazon.



"We're delighted with AT&T's decision to approve the SlingPlayer Mobile app on their 3G network," said John Gilmore, senior vice president and general manager at Sling Media. "SlingPlayer Mobile on AT&T's 3G network gives customers the best experience possible for watching their home TV while on the go."

Last year, the $30 App Store application (iTunes Preview) was introduced with support for Wi-Fi only. As of Thursday morning, the new 3G-compatible version was not yet made available for download. When it debuted, AppleInsider gave a positive review of the SlingPlayer Mobile application.



Last May, AT&T said it did not allow a 3G version of SlingPlayer on the iPhone because it would use too much bandwidth and could "prevent other customers from using the network. Now, AT&T has advertised it will provide developers with wireless network optimization requirements for video and other applications by the end of March at its developer-oriented Web site, developer.att.com.

In early January, AT&T announced its new "Virtual Innovation Lab" and two "Innovation Centers," which the company said
post #2 of 41
Would love to see a 3G iPod Touch... with the same 3G data plans that'll be available with the iPad. I've always wanted an iPhone for the mobile internet, but I'm not a big phone person, and can't be bothered getting into a big monthly cell phone contract.
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post #3 of 41
Surely the Google Voice app is next.
post #4 of 41
It's about freakin' time! There have been so many times that I just want to listen to the audio of a football/basketball game but it bombs out because of 3G - this will be great
post #5 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by CdnBook View Post

Would love to see a 3G iPod Touch... with the same 3G data plans that'll be available with the iPad. I've always wanted an iPhone for the mobile internet, but I'm not a big phone person, and can't be bothered getting into a big monthly cell phone contract.

You want want an iPod with a 3G data plan?

That's easy... buy an iPhone and get the data only plan that AT&T offers for the deaf.

http://www.wireless.att.com/learn/ar...for-iphone.jsp
post #6 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by fulldecent View Post

You want want an iPod with a 3G data plan?

That's easy... buy an iPhone and get the data only plan that AT&T offers for the deaf.

http://www.wireless.att.com/learn/ar...for-iphone.jsp

Not quite that easy - you have to certify that you're hard of hearing and have to give the name, title and license # of the agent who certified you as deaf...

Of course that's stupid because they are losing out on a revenue stream this way because of people like CdnBook who'd get a 3G only iPhone but don't want to pay for the phone services.
post #7 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmc6000 View Post

It's about freakin' time! There have been so many times that I just want to listen to the audio of a football/basketball game but it bombs out because of 3G - this will be great

Maybe I'm missing your point but if your 3G service was bombing out on audio why would it be better for video?
post #8 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post

Maybe I'm missing your point but if your 3G service was bombing out on audio why would it be better for video?

They must have a secret update coming that will cover the US in red. ;-)
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post #9 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmc6000 View Post

Not quite that easy - you have to certify that you're hard of hearing and have to give the name, title and license # of the agent who certified you as deaf...

Of course that's stupid because they are losing out on a revenue stream this way because of people like CdnBook who'd get a 3G only iPhone but don't want to pay for the phone services.

Not exactly. AT&T's network, as we have all seen, is not infallible, and it is not currently capable of supporting that many 3G users, at least, not at those costs.

The iPad is one thing. It will sell a few million in the first year. A few million the year after.

iPhone/iPod touch? Already in the tens of millions in the U.S. and growing strong. If AT&T suddenly enabled "data only" plans for these customers (if the iPod touch were capable), the network consumption vs. revenue would skew wildly out of control.

It's no secret that AT&T makes a killing off of Voice & SMS plans. The only real value is in the data plan. Requirng iPhone customers to sport all 3 plans at once, essentially makes it an "Unlimited" device at around $80-$110 a month, average.

That's a big difference from the iPad, also "Unlimited" for $15-30 depending on needs. AT&T won't be making any money of these plans, or the devices themselves. All it did was advertise their network, and (probably) bought a whole a new level of trust from Apple.
post #10 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post

Maybe I'm missing your point but if your 3G service was bombing out on audio why would it be better for video?

Perhaps because,as the article says, if it has been optimized for ATT's 3G network, neither should 'bomb out' in the new, optimized version?
post #11 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Perhaps because,as the article says, if it has been optimized for ATT's 3G network, neither should 'bomb out' in the new, optimized version?

I meant bomb out as in it wouldn't even load at all. It says "oh, you're on 3G? Ok, you get nothing." I suppose I should have made that more clear - sorry.
post #12 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmz View Post

Not exactly. AT&T's network, as we have all seen, is not infallible, and it is not currently capable of supporting that many 3G users, at least, not at those costs.

The iPad is one thing. It will sell a few million in the first year. A few million the year after.

iPhone/iPod touch? Already in the tens of millions in the U.S. and growing strong. If AT&T suddenly enabled "data only" plans for these customers (if the iPod touch were capable), the network consumption vs. revenue would skew wildly out of control.

It's no secret that AT&T makes a killing off of Voice & SMS plans. The only real value is in the data plan. Requirng iPhone customers to sport all 3 plans at once, essentially makes it an "Unlimited" device at around $80-$110 a month, average.

That's a big difference from the iPad, also "Unlimited" for $15-30 depending on needs. AT&T won't be making any money of these plans, or the devices themselves. All it did was advertise their network, and (probably) bought a whole a new level of trust from Apple.

The TAP plan is $50/month for the 3G/3Gs so I think with that price they could manage it - at the $30 price for the iPad - probably not.
post #13 of 41
I'll reserve judgement til I see the quality but all I need from AT&T and Apple is tethering, fix NYC's network and background tasks. After that I won't need to jailbreak.
post #14 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmc6000 View Post

I meant bomb out as in it wouldn't even load at all. It says "oh, you're on 3G? Ok, you get nothing." I suppose I should have made that more clear - sorry.

Got it... I don't have the Sling Box, am looking in to it, but I thought they may have had a 3G version like EyeTv that uses an 'optimized 3g' compression and a web app and that it was your 3G service that couldn't handle it.
post #15 of 41
I honestly never thought AT&T would agree to this.

Thank you Sling and AT&T!
post #16 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

I'll reserve judgement til I see the quality but all I need from AT&T and Apple is tethering, fix NYC's network and background tasks. After that I won't need to jailbreak.


8am i get close to 3000 kbps on a speedtest in midtown manhattan. after 1pm around 1000. used to be 1/4 of that before the upgrade.
post #17 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

I'll reserve judgement til I see the quality but all I need from AT&T and Apple is tethering, fix NYC's network and background tasks. After that I won't need to jailbreak.

Exactly. Which begs the question, how will the underground treat the ipad? I know they have a flash plugin for safarie, so one can only wonder if all their talent, 5 rows, quick slide, teethering, mutitasking, video on non 3gs phones, background apps, and ao much more, if they will turn the ipad into the device people really want.
post #18 of 41
My Elgato EyeTV Hybrid has had 3G live tv for a while. It's awesome, I used it alot during the football season when I was on the road.

http://www.elgato.com/elgato/na/main...TV-app.en.html
post #19 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post

Got it... I don't have the Sling Box, am looking in to it, but I thought they may have had a 3G version like EyeTv that uses an 'optimized 3g' compression and a web app and that it was your 3G service that couldn't handle it.

It's been really invaluable to me. My g/f and I watch a lot of TV shows together but a lot of time I'm not there to watch it with her and we'd get so far behind on the stuff we like it was just nearly pointless. Since she got me the slingbox (for Christmas - awesome!) we've stayed up with almost all of our shows and when we'd go over to a friends house to watch a big football game or something I could watch the basketball game I was missing on my phone and, surprisingly, it really doesn't mow through the battery like you'd expect.
post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post

I'll reserve judgement til I see the quality but all I need from AT&T and Apple is tethering, fix NYC's network and background tasks. After that I won't need to jailbreak.

so you're one of the bandwidth hogs that's causing all my calls in NYC to drop.
post #21 of 41
*yawn*

here's the humble iPhone screen, which contains apps for watching TV/video/movies in Europe...




We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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post #22 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmc6000 View Post

The TAP plan is $50/month for the 3G/3Gs so I think with that price they could manage it - at the $30 price for the iPad - probably not.

Gotcha, didn't know the TAP plan was $50/mon. And yeah we agree, $30/mon for iPhones would cripple AT&T, or at least, cripple the revenue stream they're used to.
post #23 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by desarc View Post

so you're one of the bandwidth hogs that's causing all my calls in NYC to drop.

That's like saying he's a hog for eating all $30 worth of food he buys at the supermarket.
post #24 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by ivan.rnn01 View Post

*yawn*

here's the humble iPhone screen, which contains apps for watching TV/video/movies in Europe...



Any of those let you watch TV from your home DVR? (I really don't know)
post #25 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmc6000 View Post

Any of those let you watch TV from your home DVR? (I really don't know)

No, no.
They all are just various Mobile TV providers.

We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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We mean Apple no harm.

People are lovers, basically. -- Engadget livebloggers at the iPad mini event.

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post #26 of 41
I thought AT&T had nothing to do with the app approval process.
post #27 of 41
Does SlingPlayer add further burden to an overtaxed AT&T cellular network? Or has that 2 Billion infrastructure money AT&T is using to upgrade their network starting to bear fruit?

Ten years ago, we had Steve Jobs, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash.  Today we have no Jobs, no Hope and no Cash.

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Ten years ago, we had Steve Jobs, Bob Hope and Johnny Cash.  Today we have no Jobs, no Hope and no Cash.

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post #28 of 41
This can't be good for the network. They say it's optimized to conserve bandwith, but it still takes up bandwith on an already overloaded network.
post #29 of 41
Now we just have to wait for the baseball season to start up, to compare video quality from MLB to that of the Slingbox. I'll bet AT&T is forcing Slingbox to use a much lower bandwidth than MLB, just because MLB is kicking back some subscription cash to AT&T...

Hello I'd like the Network Neutrality hearings at the FCC? Um, why was my call just dropped?
post #30 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewMacMan View Post

This can't be good for the network. They say it's optimized to conserve bandwith, but it still takes up bandwith on an already overloaded network.

Given the expensive buy-in I'd say that the CNN program w/ all the video on there taxes the network 10x if not 100x's of times more than allowing sling player to work via 3G. Only difference is this will stream for, say, 30 mins instead of having a video download on your CNN app for 5 mins and then going to getting another video that's 5 mins, etc etc.

Basically, I think Sling Player is a fairly niche segment and it really shouldn't do much compared to many, many other things.
post #31 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pmz View Post

That's like saying he's a hog for eating all $30 worth of food he buys at the supermarket.

i would agree with you, except it's a jailbroken phone, voiding his contract and violating the policies he signed an agreement to follow.

it's like him telling you he would pick up your girlfriend at the airport, and then fcuking her before bringing her home.
post #32 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewMacMan View Post

This can't be good for the network. They say it's optimized to conserve bandwith, but it still takes up bandwith on an already overloaded network.

ATT has fixed their issues pretty much everywhere, except maybe NYC. Don't go there and have no desire to ever go back, I know San Francisco is ten times better now and I have 3g everywhere I go and works great. They have fixed their network so now they can allow this and their network is not as overloaded with the new 850 MHz spectrum and the new back hauls.
post #33 of 41
I travel several times a year and although I have a slingbox, I really didn't think it was fair to iphone users since AT&T allowed Blackberry & other phone owners to use Slingbox over 3g.

Of course we don't know exactly the extent of the modifications AT&T has required, maybe to conserve bandwidth the Slingbox video screen is a quarter-inch square?!



baby steps......
post #34 of 41
This is a double tick me off!

So my network in the past year and a half has gone from 3 bars to practically nothing and AT$T decides to add more crap onto their network without fixing things first?!

And then Sling, decides my Slingbox AV doesn't qualify even though, way back when, they sold it with the promise it would.

I hate bith these companies. Oxygen thieves...
post #35 of 41
Over a year ago a friend showed SlingPlayer on his Blackberry Bold on AT&T... so it's hard to say how much more strain the network will have. I was excited when it came out for the iPhone and bought it on the hope that it would be able to run via 3G...
post #36 of 41
If they are worried about 3g congestions, I say f it. Just let anyone stream the video over 3g, and limit the bandwidth available for video streaming. If the quality drops or sucks, too bad. People really don't ha e rig tot complain ha they cannot stream video perfectly al the time...
post #37 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispy View Post

This is a double tick me off!

So my network in the past year and a half has gone from 3 bars to practically nothing and AT$T decides to add more crap onto their network without fixing things first?!

And then Sling, decides my Slingbox AV doesn't qualify even though, way back when, they sold it with the promise it would.

I hate bith these companies. Oxygen thieves...

I don't have the AV either. I read that Sling Media won't support the older models BUT the software works with them....

We'll find out.
post #38 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

8am i get close to 3000 kbps on a speedtest in midtown manhattan. after 1pm around 1000. used to be 1/4 of that before the upgrade.

We had an upgrade in New York? Wow! I dropped four calls inside an hour yesterday.

I hope AT&T gives us another upgrade soon.
post #39 of 41
Probably having something to do with AT&T failure to deliver their promised live TV app.
post #40 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by steviet02 View Post

Maybe I'm missing your point but if your 3G service was bombing out on audio why would it be better for video?

Well, maybe the quality of the video really sucks!
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