Dish Network’s Sling Media division offers a line of products that let you stream your personal media over the internet. Want to watch recording from your TiVo on your smartphone? A Slingbox and SlingPlayer app will let you do that.
Now Dish is launching something new: Sling TV is a service that lets you stream live TV without paying for cable. Just pony up $20 per month and you can get a package with access to live content from ESPN, Cartoon Network, HGTV, TBS, TNT, and a Disney, among others.
Sling TV is clearly aimed at so-called cord cutters, which are folks who don’t pay for expensive cable or satellite TV packages. Sure, you’ll still need to pay someone for cable access (or mooch on your neighbor’s WiFi) to use Sling TV, but depending on where you live and what internet service providers operate in you area, Sling TV could save you some money while providing access to live sports events and other content.
You won’t get all the channels available from traditional cable. There’s no AMC or FX, as TechCrunch points out. Nor can you stream broadcast network content from ABC, CBS, NBC, or Fox. But if you’re a true cord cutter you may already be getting programs from those networks through an antenna (or Hulu).
Sling TV will offer some on-demand content as well as live video streams. But there’s no DVR feature. If you want to save TV shows to watch later, you’ll need a different solution.
You won’t need to buy hardware from Dish to use Sling TV when it launches. You’ll be able to use apps for iOS or Android or smart TV devices including Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Google Nexus Player, and Xbox One devices.