Dish announces 'Sling TV' $20-per-month Internet TV service with ESPN, CNN, more

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2015
Satellite television provider Dish has jumped into the cord-cutting ring with a new over-the-top streaming television service featuring a number of big-name broadcasters, possibly signaling that content owners are becoming more at ease with alternative distribution methods that could bolster Apple's own efforts.




Among those who have signed on for the $20-per-month service, according to Re/code, is canonical sports network ESPN. Live sports broadcasts are frequently cited as the biggest reason that potential cord-cutters do not make the switch, making the Worldwide Leader's participation --?the first time it has made such an agreement --?particularly noteworthy.

Joining ESPN are ESPN2, ABC Family, Adult Swim, Cartoon Network, CNN, Disney Channel, Food Network, HGTV, Maker, TBS, TNT, and Travel Channel. Other channels will eventually be offered as a la carte additions.

Dish has yet to reveal when consumers will be able to sign up for Sling TV, only that the roll out will come "soon." Users will be able to access the service on Macs and iOS devices, but the Apple TV remains unsupported, reportedly because Dish is unwilling to bend to Apple's design restrictions for Apple TV apps.

Apple was previously rumored to have begun negotiations with content owners, including ESPN, for a similar service that would be tied to a new Apple TV. Those negotiations are thought to have died, however, with the company now engaged in talks with cable companies, rather than rights holders.

"Cable companies remain reluctant to leave an opening for Apple, which they fear could displace them as the brand that customers associate with television delivery," a July 2014 report on Apple's plans said. "And they also remain committed to their own new devices and experiences."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,372member
    "Cable companies remain reluctant to leave an opening for Apple, which they fear could displace them as the brand that customers associate with television delivery."

    Oh I would love that to come to pass!
  • Reply 2 of 29
    And u think Comcast/Time Warner are warm to this?
  • Reply 3 of 29
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,492member

    This is huge. I would have gladly paid $20/mo for ESPN over this last holiday season.

     

    It will be interesting to know if it will stream to AppleTV via AirPlay.

     

    I assume you don't otherwise need to be a DishTV customer.

     

    Huge.

  • Reply 4 of 29

    For those with the experience, what are the general quality and speed of satellite-based internet services like? Any thoughts on how it compares to cable broadband?

  • Reply 5 of 29
    kent909kent909 Posts: 711member
    This is progress, but you still need an Internet connection to get Apple TV or ??? I am waiting for the day I can tell Comcast to FO. Looks like we are getting closer????
  • Reply 6 of 29
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,417member

    Is this their attempt to muddy the waters with a name that sounds like "Slingbox"?

  • Reply 7 of 29
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,492member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

     

    Is this their attempt to muddy the waters with a name that sounds like "Slingbox"?


    Apparently, Dish owns Sling Media.

  • Reply 8 of 29
    negafoxnegafox Posts: 480member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

     

    Is this their attempt to muddy the waters with a name that sounds like "Slingbox"?


    Dish owns Slingbox.

  • Reply 9 of 29
    For those with the experience, what are the general quality and speed of satellite-based internet services like? Any thoughts on how it compares to cable broadband?

    If you're asking in reference to ISP capabilities, satellite is NOT worth it. Super expensive for slow sub-1Mbps speeds. Usually the service is bundled with DSL or another landline.

    Now if you're asking about video quality, streaming content like onan Apple TV blows away satellite and cable TV. The reason is video compression. All your cable boxes use MPEG2 compression. So the quality suffers. Even regular antennas blow cable away.

    Which is why I believe cable companies are so reluctant to deal with Apple: Apple would force them to hold themselves to higher standards in terms of both customer service and product quality. Something that they're just incapable of. And if people could compare ESPN on an Apple TV to any cable or satellite company, they would immediately loose customers.
  • Reply 10 of 29
    Every step toward ala carte and breaking the cable monopoly is a good one
  • Reply 11 of 29
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by johnfrombeyond View Post



    Every step toward ala carte and breaking the cable monopoly is a good one



    Amen. When Cableone and Viacom had a falling out we lost Comedy Central. Viacom even BLOCKS me from streaming shows from cc.com because I use Cableone's internet. I've found some ways around that, one of which is Hulu but the selection is minimal.

     

    If I were a cable provider I would be smart enough to realize that the status quo is vaporizing and my biz will be all broadband in the future. Which explains why they want to charge content providers and consumers for access. 

  • Reply 12 of 29
    So will I still be able to sign in to my ESPN app on my AppleTV with this subscription?
  • Reply 13 of 29
    Internet TV is colossal mess waiting for a somebody to fix it. Not a peep from Apple since Isaacson quoted Jobs claiming to have the fix three years ago.

    AppleTV is serviceable, but barely. The concept of Apps for channels, each with their own "watch list", "queue", "list" and different methods of surfing and searching, make no sense. It's getting worse as each content provider launches their own App which locks you into their content. Why not a separate app for each TV show? A "Breaking Bad" app with all the episodes, special content, interviews, and maybe even a chat room function would be cool, but that break's the AppleTV model. Same goes for sports. I'd like an Atlanta Braves app, which would have all their games, news about the team, chat, links to their website and Facebook pages, etc.

    I'd vote for combining Mac OS X's tags feature into a TV interface. HBO could tag all of their shows "HBO" so they would all show up under an HBO icon, but they could also tag shows under standard categories like Drama, Movies, TV, Sports, Comedy, etc. That way, you could search by Channel (HBO), or by tags that span different channels. Same for all the other networks. A single master Spotlight search could incorporate all the channels content into one place.
  • Reply 14 of 29
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,980member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kent909 View Post



    This is progress, but you still need an Internet connection to get Apple TV or ??? I am waiting for the day I can tell Comcast to FO. Looks like we are getting closer????

    Yup. Last weekend, I had Comcast outage in my area and all my streaming services were impacted. That's when I relied on Dish to get media. Even though Comcast is horrible, they're the only fast internet in the area. I'm waiting for Google fiber and ATT Fiber to be available in the area. Competition is good for customers. 

  • Reply 15 of 29
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,980member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Robert Mark View Post



    Internet TV is colossal mess waiting for a somebody to fix it. Not a peep from Apple since Isaacson quoted Jobs claiming to have the fix three years ago.



    AppleTV is serviceable, but barely. The concept of Apps for channels, each with their own "watch list", "queue", "list" and different methods of surfing and searching, make no sense. It's getting worse as each content provider launches their own App which locks you into their content. Why not a separate app for each TV show? A "Breaking Bad" app with all the episodes, special content, interviews, and maybe even a chat room function would be cool, but that break's the AppleTV model. Same goes for sports. I'd like an Atlanta Braves app, which would have all their games, news about the team, chat, links to their website and Facebook pages, etc.



    I'd vote for combining Mac OS X's tags feature into a TV interface. HBO could tag all of their shows "HBO" so they would all show up under an HBO icon, but they could also tag shows under standard categories like Drama, Movies, TV, Sports, Comedy, etc. That way, you could search by Channel (HBO), or by tags that span different channels. Same for all the other networks. A single master Spotlight search could incorporate all the channels content into one place.

    Agree. Different Apps are not good designs for TV services. I'm watching ESPN and my kid wants Disney, I have to close my App and go back out to the menu to open the Disney app. That sucks. I want to see something that bring all the subscriptions into one window or one App automatically...like I have ESPN, Disney, HBO and Food Network subscriptions, they all show up in my current window called "Your Subscription". One click, boom...all channels are there.

  • Reply 16 of 29
    Wouldn't give the cable companies a dime more then I have to.
  • Reply 17 of 29

    I just asked my iPhone, "what basketball games are on TV tonight?"

    It replied, "what league?" and gave me a list with NBA, Men's College, Women's College

    I just said, "college"

    It gave me a list of what games are on tonight, with channels and times.

     

    The AppleTV isn't nearly as smart.

  • Reply 18 of 29
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,985member
    jack mac wrote: »
    Wouldn't give the cable companies a dime more then I have to.

    Do you ever give anyone a dime more than you have to?
  • Reply 19 of 29
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,417member
    negafox wrote: »
    Dish owns Slingbox.

    D'oh!
  • Reply 20 of 29
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,429member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Negafox View Post

     

    Dish owns Slingbox.




    Close, but not correct.

     

    EchoStar owns Sling Media, acquired in 2007. Years ago, EchoStar and Dish were competitors, then the former acquired the latter, essentially merging the two services. Dish was spun off in 2008 as a satellite TV network. 

     

    EchoStar now operates the satellites that provide Dish Network services, they do not run a separate satellite TV service like they used to. Their assets are largely from their acquisition of Hughes Communications (the satellite division of General Motors, previously Hughes Electronics).

     

    EchoStar and Dish Network are closely connected as partners, but in fact separate publicly-owned corporations, trading under different Nasdaq symbols, respectively SATS and DISH.

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