The Internet-delivered subscription video service from satellite TV provider Dish Network will begin official operations Tuesday. The first invites start going out at 12 a.m. ET Tuesday to customers who preregistered on Sling.com.
Everyone else has to wait, but they will get a free one-week trial when the service opens to all customers within the next two weeks. Consumers who don't have one of the supported Net TV devices such as an Amazon Fire or Roku device can sign up on Sling.com to order a device as part of a subscription package (prices to be announced).
- Class: Public
- Rating: PG
Sling TV is an important advance in the streaming Net TV marketplace because it wraps up some popular live, linear feeds of basic-cable channels such as ESPN and CNN that previously were not available outside of traditional pay-TV packages. Most live-streaming sports and news apps require viewers to enter passwords from their pay-TV accounts to authenticate that they pay for at-home service..
Another differentiator for Sling TV is that you pay on a month-to-month basis ($20 monthly for the basic lineup). Pay-TV subscriptions often require long-term contracts of up to two years.
For those unfamiliar with Net TV, the most popular streaming subscription services such as Netflix and Amazon Instant Video offer mostly on-demand TV episodes and movies that don't become available until after a network TV series season runs its course. Hulu Plus, while it makes episodes available after airing from ABC, NBC, Fox and other channels, is far from all-inclusive.