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Dish’s $20 web TV service, Sling TV, will soon be publicly available

Sling TV launches by invite tomorrow and will have a general launch in the next two weeks.

Published onJanuary 26, 2015


Tomorrow, Dish Network will officially release the company’s new streaming TV service: Sling TV. Customers will need to pay $20 per month for channels including ESPN, CNN, Travel Channel and others. Customers can choose additional channels in $5 packs, such as a “News & Info Extra” pack with HLN, Cooking Channel, DIY and Bloomberg TV. Sling TV also includes movies and other video-on-demand offerings.

Dish worked hard to have as many hardware available platforms as possible. Sling TV can be used on computers, mobile devices or on televisions using set-top units like Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV and the Xbox One game console, as well as apps on iOS and Android.

It is clear that Dish is looking to attract business from those potential customers who have either cut the cable cord or who have never had a cable bundle.

But there are some negatives about the service:

  • No DVR capability
  • No live broadcast networks
  • Limited channel lineup (compared to today’s bundles)
  • Lack of Chromecast and Apple TV support
  • Streaming issues for some with sufficient broadband speeds

To be fair, I suspect many of the negatives will soon rectified. For example, Chromecast support is not far away and a number of channels will likely be added in the next few months.


But, in the world of skipping advertisements, some may not realize that they will need to sit through commercials with this service.

How do you convince a generation accustomed to YouTube’s “skip ad” feature that reruns of “The Big Bang Theory” are worth the wait? …… Sling TV has the same amount of commercials as any live television, but watching them on a smaller device makes them seem longer, particularly because there’s no way to skip through them. – International Business Times

Offering ESPN is a major, major factor to the success of this service. For $20 a month, sports fans will finally have a cord-cutting option at a relatively cheap price and no contract. It helps Sling TV that programming fees continue to increase. Therefore, it is hard to see when bloated TV bundles will drop in price.

So, although Sling TV is not at this moment a game-changer, it just may have the power in a short time to make substantial changes to the TV industry. But Sling TV will need to add channels, add DVR capabilities and fight off future competitors who will try to start their own TV service.

According to reports, Sling TV launches by invite tomorrow and will have a general launch in the next two weeks.

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