Cloud DVR Coming to Sling TV
CLOUD DVR COMING TO SLING TV
Sling TV, Dish Network’s semi-independent internet video streaming platform, took the TV industry by storm when it debuted last year. For the first time, a major player in the pay TV industry was offering a practical alternative to subscription cable and satellite TV. Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming services, though popular, were limited because, even though though they offered video-on-demand, they could not offer live or multi-channel TV. Sling TV addressed this gap in the market. Unlike conventional cable or satellite TV, though, it did not require a subscription. It did not require a dish or a set-top box. It did not require installation of cabling or equipment.
For access to Sling TV, all you’d need is a broadband connection and a computer, smart phone, or tablet. Before long, Sling TV supported almost every kind of streaming device: Chromecast, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, PlayStation Vue, XBox One, and iOS and Android devices.
If there was a major drawback with Sling TV, it was the lack of DVR service. Sling TV, though, is not complacent about its absence. Last month, the streaming platform beta-tested a cloud DVR for Roku devices. Roger Lynch, Sling TV’s CEO, says the cloud DVR is operating for thousands of customers. With the web DVR, a customer can record up to 100 hours of programming. Channels owned by Disney, including ABC and ESPN, can’t be recorded on it, but Sling TV is working to lift this limitation.
Lynch said of the cloud DVR, “That’s really going to be transformative for our business”, and he said it will support many more streaming devices within the next few months.
Lynch also touted AirTV, an over-the-air device made by a division of the Dish DBS Corp. “Over-the-air” means traditional broadcasting rather than cable , satellite, telecom, or streaming video. The viewer receives the OTA channels through an antenna. Most over-the-air channels are local affiliate stations of ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC.
In addition to local broadcast affiliates, AirTV handles streaming services such as Netflix and Sling TV.
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