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16 Jan

Dish Network’s Air TV Could Change The Face Of Internet Television

Dish Network Channels

Dish Network’s Air TV

Internet television is literally dominating the entire entertainment industry these days. It has brought forth rapid developments that have led to an abandoning of conventional cable TV in favor of internet-based options. Many companies have also come up with innovative concepts in delivering such interactive content right into the homes of their subscribers. in view of that, Dish Network is offering the most attractive package for the customers through its new device the Air TV.

Dish Network’s Air TV delivers video content on the big screen just like the other services like Amazon Fire TV, PlayStation Vue, Apple TV, etc. Like them Air TV has also the addition of some common features such as the universal search option for exploring and viewing any content. Yet again, Air TV differs from all the other services in some of its new kind of features.

Reports say that Air TV has the ability to integrate over the air feeds from a digital antenna. This has numerous advantages as it offers a way to flip between other network shows on air. Apparently, with the introduction of Air TV, Dish Network has stirred up intense competition in the field with other companies. It can be seen as a major transition from traditional cable delivery to internet content.

Moreover, this is speeding up as well, since most of the customers around the world have pushed away from conventional cable into digital and other interactive content delivery systems. In most countries, the governments are also actively pursuing such massive digitization projects.

Dish Network Channel Guide

Sling TV Channels

Nonetheless, Dish Network’s new efforts have not undergone that much change from what it did two years ago. Their previous models were satellite receivers, like what Comcast is doing with its new X1 cable box, offering bundled content from cable along with Netflix and other streaming services. Yet Dish’s predictions for the future of television reflect on their release of new products that are hundred percent internet content providers.

Dish Network realizes how customers take into account the many benefits offered through their box. Being much cheaper than traditional pay TV is one of its prime attractions, although there are no official price points on this. The average pay TV subscriber has to pay a monthly fee of $10 to $20, whereas the monthly subscription fee for Air TV is assumed to be under that. However, the prices may vary and even lower in the times to come.

09 Jan

Amazon Alexa Will Work With Dish DVRs And Lenovo Smart Speaker

Dish Network Channel Guide

Dish Network Hopper DVR

The digital brain of Amazon is growing out of their home network. Recently, Dish Network and Lenovo announced Alexa powered and supported devices at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Lenovo debuted their own voice-activated speaker named Smart Assistant, which is powered by Alexa. The speaker from Lenovo looks like a cross between Google Home and Amazon Echo, and the speakers are available in light green, gray, or orange colors. Lenovo said that the speaker has eight far filed microphones when compared to Echo that has only seven microphones. These speakers will be able to hear you from a distance.

Dish Network, on the other hand, said that they are the first television provider to offer devices that are fully compatible with Alexa. Customers can pair Hopper DVR with speakers that are powered by Alexa like the Amazon Echo and control the device using voice.

It is reported that fruits of the new partnership between Dish Network and Amazon will debut in the first half of the year and users will be able to make use of voice search function to find and play programs by mid-2017. Besides that, search on the device can also be performed based on title, channel, genre, and actor.

Dish Network Packages

Lenovo Smart Assistant

In 2015, Amazon opened Alexa to developers. This was done to encourage developers to build skills for Echo and other devices that are powered by Alexa. As a result, developers have made and posted more than 5,400 skills that can be executed by Alexa. Developers who like to add to the abilities of Alexa can write code that is capable of working with Alexa in the cloud.

Dish reports that users can just ask Alexa voice assistant to tune your television to your favorite show. This feature will be introduced to the Hopper DVR lineup from Dish Network. It is expected that all of the broadband connected DVRs of Dish Network will have deep integration with the popular voice interface of Amazon by the middle of 2017. It is expected that the users will be able to ask Alexa to tune to specific channels and to do basic navigation through the Dish Network channel guide.

The timing of the smart home capabilities from Dish Network is in line with another upcoming enhancement from Dish Network, multi-room music. It is reported that together with Amazon Music, users can expect to stream music through Pandora and iHeartRadio in more than one room at the same time making use of the Dish Hopper box.

30 Nov

Sling TV Plans To Introduce A Cloud DVR

Dish Network Packages

Sling TV Plans

The competition between streaming service providers will certainly heat up with the launch of DirecTV Now. Dish Network’s Sling TV has enjoyed abundant success over the last few months and they are still one of the leading streaming service providers in the country. However, Sling TV has faced tough challenges from other major competitors including Sony’s PlayStation Vue, and the competition is going to get even more intense with the launch of DirecTV Now.

This has urged the provider to adopt new strategies to attract more customers to their offerings. As a result, Dish Network is planning to introduce a cloud DVR to Sling subscribers, which will enable them to record movies and TV shows and watch them later at their convenience.

A similar feature is already available in PlayStation Vue, which is one of the major reasons for their huge subscribership. Sling recently announced that their cloud DVR will be initially launched as a beta version by the end of the year, and it will be available to a limited number of subscribers, who watch Sling TV through Roku devices.

It is evident that Sling TV is targeting PlayStation Vue subscribers with this strategy, as the streaming service provider has announced that the recording saved by customers will not expire “even after 28 days”. The recordings on PlayStation Vue can only be stored for 28 days.

Dish Network Channel Guide

Streaming Service Providers

In addition to that, Sling has also promised that conflict-free recording will be available through the DVR and the users will be able to pause, fast forward, and rewind the recorded contents. Reports indicate that Sling TV subscribers will receive approximately 100 hours of cloud DVR storage during the beta trials at zero extra charges.

Sling TV subscribers will be able to record their favorite movies, TV shows, or even the entire series through the DVR. In addition to that, they could easily access the saved recordings by going into the “My TV” screen on their devices or TV. If the DVR runs out of storage space, then it will automatically delete the oldest “watched” recording, in order to make space for new recordings.

Note that the participation in Sling TV’s latest venture is invite-only type, and it will require subscribers to have a Roku device to access the service. Existing Sling customers can sign up for this offering by logging into the official website of Sling TV.

24 Nov

Sling TV Will Be Integrated To Comcast’s Video Delivery Platform

Dish Network Channel Guide

Sling On Comcast X1

A recent announcement made by Comcast Corporation and Dish Network revealed that the online streaming platform of Dish, Sling TV, would be integrated into Comcast’s X1, which is the providers MSO’s cloud-based, managed video delivery platform.

Reports indicate that over 425 channels will be integrated to the X1 video delivery platform after this deal. Comcast has also recently expanded their video platform to include another popular streaming service, Netflix. In addition to that, the leading telecom company is also looking to become an all-in-one destination for video programming.

Sling TV has become widely popular due to their exceptional offering of a fat bundle of major cable and broadcast channels to their subscribers. However, it seems that Comcast is not interested in the fat bundle, but they are rather looking for the “Sling International” component from the provider.

Sling International is the multicultural remnant of Dish World, which was introduced prior to Sling TV. This platform has an excellent collection of multi ethnic channels, which are currently unavailable in Comcast’s X1 platform. Comcast hopes that they will be able to target ethnic audiences by adding these channels to their offerings.

Javier Garcia, senior VP and GM of multicultural services for Comcast Cable said, “The addition of Sling TV’s multicultural programming will be an excellent complement to the existing international offerings on X1 and will be attractive to our customers. Our customers are becoming increasingly diverse and this is a fantastic opportunity to quickly deliver even more customized and multicultural programming to them, on an X1 platform that’s smart, fast and easy-to-use.”

Dish Network Channel List

Comcast Video Platform

Ben Weinberger, Sling TV’s chief product officer, also in a statement said, “Sling TV’s debut on Comcast’s X1 is another step forward in our promise to consumers to be available on their favorite platforms. For the first time, millions of Comcast customers will have access to new multicultural programming options as well as the full suite of Sling TV programming.”

In a recent announcement, Brian Roberts, Comcast CEO said that the integration of Netflix to X1 is just a start as they are planning to add more OTT platforms to their streaming service in the near future. “We are in discussions with other SVOD providers. We decided to focus on this one the biggest one, and the most important to get right. Now, we have a nice template,” Roberts said. It seems as if the addition of Sling is another step in that direction.

29 Sep

Which Of The DVRs Is Best In Skipping Commercials?

Dish Network Channel Guide

Hopper 3 DVR

At CEDIA 2016, Dish had some fresh competition in the TV commercial skipping front, as TiVo also skips television ads now. So, which of the two is the best? The comparison of these DVRs shared here sheds more light on the two devices.

Dish® AutoHop

Dish® Network service works flawlessly for the prime time shows with the AutoHop technology, and it is obvious that this feature keeps users happy. The feature works so well because Dish® has people who sit and watch the show as it is aired to flag the beginning and end of the advertisements for AutoHop. The bigger treat is the PrimeTime Anytime service from Dish®, that records big TV network shows in crucial hours, and with the 2 TB storage space offered with Hopper 3, this feature is really a treat.

Besides that, Dish® tags only some of the primetime shows in a selected number of networks, and the worst part is that AutoHop feature will not be available for some days after the show airs. In addition, Dish also has to maintain their relationships with the major networks, out of which, most of them sued and then settled to some agreement with Dish ®Network over AutoHop.

TiVo SkipMode

TiVo comes with Roamio, Bolt, and Bolt+ SkipMode services. TiVo does not need to appease any network or studio as Dish does, so they can skip anything. The latest SkipMode services from TiVo cover all the top 20 channels in the US, and the best part is that commercial-free versions of the programs are available in about five minutes after the original airing.

Dish Network

TiVo SkipMode

TiVo tags only the beginning of the TV segments and not the end. This means that they are bookmarking the chapters of the program, and so, a user can press the skip button to go to the next segment of the show. The feature is handy not only to skip commercials but also to jump through slow bits of a show. The only downside is that the user needs to be at the remote always to skip the ads.

28 Sep

Dish Faces Whistle Blower Lawsuit From Federal Government

Dish Network Channel Guide

Whistle Blower Lawsuit

A recent federal whistle blower lawsuit against Dish Network and some small business partners claims that these companies and their executives owe billions of dollars to the Federal government. Dish Network said that the lawsuit has no merit and asserted that the Federal government has looked at the claims and has declined to get involved.

The suit was filed back in May 2015 by Vermont National Phone Co., a rural telecom firm in Vermont. However, the lawsuit is unsealed and could be disclosed publicly for the first time now. The lawsuit is the latest change in controversial use of two businesses by Dish Network. These businesses are SNR Wireless LicenseCo LLC and NorthStar Wireless LLC.

These businesses were used by Dish as bidding partners to be eligible for small business discount in one of the Federal Communications Commission auctions of wireless frequencies that are used for internet and mobile phones, in 2014. Dish Network has accumulated unused wireless frequencies since 2008, as Dish CEO, Charlie Ergen plans to pair wireless internet services with the 13.9 million satellite TV and streaming subscribers of the company.

Data shows that the Dish affiliated companies knocked 3.3 billion dollars off the cost of spectrum that Dish Network won at auction. This allowed Dish and their partners to get the spectrum for ten billion dollars, when the spectrum licenses costs around 13.3 billion dollars.

The discount that Dish got provoked public outcry and FCC revoked the discount in August 2015. Dish Network and its partners agreed to give twenty seven percent of the licenses that they won in the auction, and owe five hundred and forty million dollars to FCC to cover the cost of auctioning the licenses returned by Dish.

Dish Network

Dish And Affiliated Business

Dish Network contested the interpretation of FCC claiming that they were transparent with the FCC about their bidding partnerships before the commencement of the auction and that they had received appro9val from FCC before the start of the bidding.

“After fully investigating the allegations in Vermont National’s complaint over the course of almost a year, the Department of Justice has declined to take over the case,” Dish Network said in a statement. “The DOJ’s decision is entirely consistent with the FCC’s conclusion that there had been ‘no showing that SNR and NorthStar attempted to mislead the Commission about their respective relationships with Dish.’”

27 Sep

AT&T Extends Their Deal With Starz

Cable TV Alternatives

Top Rated Series

AT&T U-Verse and DirecTV subscribers will continue to receive Starz, as both companies recently signed a new distribution agreement. This will allow DirecTV and AT&T subscribers to access and watch popular contents from Starz such as Power, Outlander, and all other Starz and Encore programs.

In a recent SEC filing, Starz reported about a deal with AT&T, which followed long-running negotiations between the two companies. AT&T will get the rights for Starz and Encore channels through this new agreement. Reports also indicate that A&T has also taken up equity stake in Lionsgate, and Lionsgate has guaranteed AT&T to pay three annual installments of $16.67 million after completing their merger with Starz.

Lionsgate also admitted that they have signed a recent multi-year agreement with AT&T and DirecTV to cover the electronic sell-through (EST), pay-per-view and transactional VOD. However, financial details regarding the Starz-AT&T deal and on AT&Ts separate agreement with Lionsgate are not yet disclosed by the companies.

However, AT&T made a statement about the deal and mentioned that the deal extension with Starz “is a win for our customers who will now be able to watch Starz content across all AT&T platforms, including DirecTV Now. With the Starz and Lionsgate announcements, we continue to build a robust programming lineup for our new DirecTV NOW platform that includes such premium brands as Disney, HBO, Discovery Networks, NBCU Turner and Scripps Networks.”

In an investor note, Barton Crockett, FBR & Co. analyst mentioned that Starz gave AT&T a “big double-digit step-down” to renew their deal. He added that the deal between AT&T and Starz was a “jarring outlier”, when compared with other deal extensions negotiations done by AT&T.

Starz also revealed that their network revenues would have gone down by $46 million in last year, if they had the new AT&T/DirecTV deal. They also added that their network revenues would have been lower than $20 million, if the deal was in place.

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Latest Series

Barton added that the “tough” step-down in Starz rates is expected to be offset by over-the-top revenues. He added, “This makes the online growth in the new Amazon/Starz deal sound impressive.”

AT&T has also signed separate deal with major companies such as HBO, Scripps Networks Interactive, NBCUniversal, and Disney. These channels will be available in all three streaming services from DirecTV, which is set for launch by the end of the year.

21 Sep

Sling TV Adds Sec Network And ESPN 3 To Their Channel Lineup

Dish Network Channel Guide

Sec Network And ESPN 3

Sling TV has just added two exceptional sports channels, SEC Network and ESPN 3, to their Sling Orange package. These channels offer exclusive live coverage of exciting college sports events to the subscribers. Sling has earlier signed a carriage deal with Campus Insiders and Pac-12 Network also.

SEC Network offers the exclusive broadcast of contests from University of Texas, University of Florida, University of Alabama, and other Southeastern Conference schools. On the other hand, the online streaming service, ESPN 3, brings the live coverage of sports events that are not broadcasted in any other ESPN network.

The launch of these amazing networks will enable Sling TV subscribers to access more than thousands of sporting events such as college basketball, college football, NCAA Championships, cricket, soccer, tennis, and a lot more on their devices.

Earlier in the month of June, Sling TV spitted their offerings into two packages, Sling Blue and Sling Orange. The multi-streaming service Sling Blue offered the broadcast of cable channels and regional sports networks to the subscribers. This package is an absolute treat to sports fans and it offers the live telecast of numerous popular sports events from all over the world.

However, subscribers who opted for Sling Orange received the original 20-channel offering only. Yet this package allowed the subscribers to add their favorite channels at an additional prize of $5 per month. Sling customers were also allowed to choose channels from any genre at this additional price.

Dish Network Channel List

Sling TV Channel Lineup

CEO Roger Lynch said, “Adding ESPN3 and SEC Network+ into our guide means sports fans now have access to some of the most intense athletic match-ups of the year in one place. With Sling TV, fans can sign-up for our service and begin watching the game within minutes and keep up with their favorite team all season long.”

Glenn Eisen, Sling TV chief marketing officer, ensured that both SEC Network and ESPN 3 would be available to the Sling Orange subscribers at zero extra charges. In addition to that, Sling TV has also added SEC Network+ on their “Sports Extra” package, but the subscribers will have to pay an additional amount of $5 per month to access this channel.

01 Sep

ONE Network Refuses To Sign Renewal Contract With Dish Network

Dish Network Channel Guide

ONE Network Contract Not Renewed

Dish Network and Sling subscribers will lose their access to ONE World Sports as Dish failed to renew their contract with the network recently. Reports suggest that Dish Network demanded for “most favored nation” status in their five-year carriage deal, but the demand was unacceptable for ONE World Sports. This disagreement between the two companies resulted in the blackout of the sports channel, and Dish and Sling Subscribers will not be able to access ONE World Sports from today onward.

ONE World stated that the reason why the object against MFN provisions is because they “limit a network’s ability to expand in a rapidly changing marketplace. With an insistence on MFN terms that were imbalanced relative to the network’s carriage, our preference was to provide another in a series of short-term extensions while we worked through a new agreement reflecting our limited availability to Dish subscribers. Regrettably, Dish declined an extension.”

In reply to that, Dish Network stated, “We constantly evaluate the content we carry and we work to provide channels that our customers’ demand. As a result, sometimes channels are removed based on a combination of customer interest and business terms to carry the channels. For these reasons, One World Sports was removed from the Dish platform.”

DirecTV Family Package

ONE World Sports Unavailable

Reports also reveal that ONE World wanted different terms in the renewal agreement. They wanted to include their domestic sports package in HD instead of standard versions on all Dish and Sling platforms. Analysts suggest that this might also be the reason for dispute between the two companies.

In another statement, ONE World said, “It is our desire for the network to have carriage on Dish with packaging consistent with, and in a format, where fans look for live sports content. While we know this is the best business decision for our network, we deeply regret how this may impact our viewers and their ability to watch all the exciting programming slated for September.”

The exclusive coverage of college football games is scheduled to start from Sept 17 on ONE World Sports. In addition to this, North American Soccer League (NASL) games are also broadcasted on this channel. So, if Dish fails to come to terms soon, subscribers would end up with not getting the telecast.

30 Aug

Dish Network Battles Piracy

Dish Network Channel Guide

Dish Against Piracy

Satellite providers like Dish Network and DirecTV have been fighting against piracy for a very long time. Generally, a Dish Network package, which offers more than 250 channels, can be purchased for just $75 per month. However, many individuals have been using illegal subscription to access the Dish channels at zero charges.

Dish Network is determined to bring these pirates to law, and they have been filing lawsuits against suspected individuals in Federal courts. The individuals will have to pay $10,000 in damages to Dish Network, if proven guilty. However, Dish Network has refused to comment on piracy or the lawsuit.

In the email sent to the Sun Herald, Dish Network stated that, “Pay-TV providers have a long history of aggressively fighting piracy. Piracy is tantamount to theft, hurting honest consumers through increased costs to the industry. Pay-TV providers invest billions of dollars in exchange for the right to deliver high-quality programming to our customers.”

The latest lawsuit is filed against John Barrett of Utah Street in Bay St. Louis. Barrett will have to pay for damages, if he is proven guilty before the law. The previous lawsuit filed by Dish Network was against Charles Yelverton of Perkinston back in the year 2013. The reports from US file courts indicate that Yelverton, defend himself and he finally agreed to pay Dish Network for the damages.

Dish Network

Illegal Subscription Accessing Channels

Barrett has also refused to comment on this issue but a man, who identified as Barrett’s brother said, “It was legit”. He further stated that Barrett thought that he bought a legitimate satellite device and he didn’t believe that the lawsuit was a big concern.

The man who claimed to be Barrett’s brother further added, “We looked into it. He said he’s not worried about it.” The lawsuit states that Barrett was “circumventing DISH Network’s security system and receiving DISH Network’s satellite broadcasts of copyrighted television programming without payment of the required subscription fee.”

According to the suit, Barrett subscribed to NFusion Private Server, which enabled him to decrypt Dish’s signal and access the channels at zero charges. This is a violation of privacy laws, copyright, and federal communications laws.

The lawsuit states that the security systems enabled by Dish to detect privacy has been circumvented by the pirates. The lawsuit also mentioned, “The black market in piracy devices represents a multimillion-dollar industry in the United States.”

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