Is Dish’s “Virtual Cable” a Game Changer?

Do you still have cable TV? If not, count yourself among the thousands across the country who have ditched traditional television outlets in favor of online video services. If you haven’t cut the cord yet, however, satellite provider Dish Network might have just the thing to get you to reach for those scissors. For just $20 a month, subscribers will be able to get the traditional basic cable package – via your broadband connection.

TV providers have always offered a minimal, low-cost channel package in the hopes that customers would eventually upgrade. The difference between those plans and Sling TV, however, is the equipment. Or, in this particular case, lack thereof. Dish Network’s offering – announced at CES 2015 this week and still “experimental” – is strictly bring-your-own-broadband. That means no satellite dishes, no cable boxes and no taking time off work to wait for a guy who will supposedly show up between 10 am and 3 pm.

The biggest selling point – and the feature that could potentially reel in those hesitant to ditch their traditional service – is the inclusion of ESPN in the package. Both ESPN and ESPN2 are included in the package, meaning those keeping their normal TV set up in order to get non-broadcast live sports have one less reason to stick around. While the other nine billion ESPN channels aren’t included, Time Warner’s TNT is, meaning sports fans will be able to catch NBA games.

If Sling TV can follow-up on the expectations laid out for it, it could lead to a whole new way TV is packaged and sold. What do you think?  Is this a product you can see yourself taking advantage of?

Leave a Comment

I accept the Privacy Policy