DISH Network Corp.
) announced the commercial launch of the pay-TV industry's first
set-top box using wireless connectivity.
Subscribers will now be able to connect to DISH's flagship
Hopper Whole-Home HD DVR through a dedicated 802.11ac access point
and watch TV shows on any device and in and around the home through
a wireless Joey device. A WiFi-enabled set-top box is a significant
innovation in the pay-TV industry as it eliminates the need for
either coaxial or Ethernet wiring within customer premises.
DISH subscribers have to install a wireless Joey client for $7
per month per device and a wireless Joey 802.11 ac access point for
a one-time fee of $50. DISH is using
) BCM4360 chipset for the WiFi connectivity which operates in the
5GHz frequency band and uses 3x3 multi-input/multi-output (MIMO)
technology with beam forming and auto frequency selection.
The wireless Joey will include all the trick-play features of
wired Joey such as pause/rewind/fast forward, PrimeTime Anytime
with automatically recorded primetime TV and AutoHop for commercial
free playback of select shows.
In early 2012, DISH introduced an innovative HD whole-home DVR
called "Hooper" together with a sidekick called "Joey". The device
allows the user to watch TV shows and movies in 4 different rooms
at the same time and can record 6 HD shows at once. Hooper is
developed with an in-build 2-terabyte hard disk that can store
2,000 hours of sports and entertainment content.
Hopper device users can also watch their favorite programs on
PlayStation 3 (PS3) and PS4 gaming consoles through a virtual Joey.
Moreover, enhancement of the DISH Anywhere mobile app will further
improve TV viewing facilities on tablets and smartphones.
The pay-TV industry has been focusing on developing a wireless
set-top box for long. In 2011,
) introduced its first wireless set-top box. In Apr 2014,
) launched its wireless Genie mini set-top box. Both the companies
are using Quantenna Communications Inc.'s chipsets.
However, DISH is the first company to start the commercial
shipment of WiFi enabled Hopper devices. DISH currently carries a
Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
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