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DISH Network’s Hopper: New Multi-Room TV Products & Broadband Services

DISH NetworkLast week, there were leaked reports claiming that the Satellite TV provider, DISH Network, would be unveiling a new broadband satellite service, as well as a home DVR solution dubbed ‘Hopper’ during their press conference that was scheduled for Monday, January 9, 2012.

In this case, the rumors turned out to be true, and the company unveiled their new product at this time. Hopper allows consumers to watch shows at their convenience, while throughout their homes without missing a beat. Interest peaked, read on or call DISH for more details at 855-357-2283.

DISH Network Hopper Features

The new DVR is designed to work in multiple rooms, so you will be able to stop a show while in one room and then resume watching it in another room. The Hopper DVR has three tuners. The main unit plays the role of server with its 750 MHz processor, while two extender units known as ‘Joeys’ will be streaming recorded content to other sets within the home.

The main unit also comes with three tuners, picture-in-picture, Bluetooth for your wireless headphones and two terabytes of internal memory that can store approximately 1000 hours of standard definition or 250 hours for HD content. There are also on-demand titles numbering in the hundreds that you can view instantly on the DVR. Despite how impressive this sounds, it actually does not even take up all 250 storage hours of the hard drive.

The Hopper logo features a kangaroo nicknamed Hopper, while Joey is typically a nickname used for baby kangaroos. In November, the very first report was made by FierceCable, stating that the network had trademarked three brands – Hopper, Joey and HopBox, which would be used for their video recorders as well as their digital devices for media streaming.

Rumors

Use the Hopper to DVR your favorite gamesRumors about the DVR started when Dave Zatz, a blogger, wrote in reference to an article that ran on TWICE. The article was quickly removed shortly after the publication ran it, however, Dave was able to grab a couple of screenshots to put up on his blog, displaying the kangaroo logo.

The blogger also said that the company would announce their re-branding effort that would include the introduction of a new logo. In addition to these leaks, broadband details had also appeared in an article in Dealerscope Magazine’s January issue, but this was also removed.

Highlights

The highlight of the Hopper is definitely the PrimeTime Anywhere feature. This feature allows you to record your favorite primetime shows on NBC, ABC, Fox and CBS. The box uses one of the tuners to store content for 8 days, allowing you to enjoy your favorite shows on demand. Theoretically, this means that the Hopper has the ability to record six shows at the same time; that is, four primetime shows as well on one on each of the remaining tuners. The DVR is limited to record three shows simultaneously during hours outside of primetime. The Hopper’s user interface looks like that of the VIP 922, but comes with new screens that keep up with the tuners’ activities for the PrimeTime Anytime feature.

Customers will now be able to watch High Definition content while controlling their DVR from four separate rooms using existing coax wiring. They will only require one Hopper unit in the home. This means that everyone in the home can be in different rooms watching their own favorite shows on demand.

Joey Features

The Joey is a small satellite receiver that performs much like an HD DVR. It uses the same interface as the main Hopper unit, and communicates with it to provide full HD DVR functionality. This is actually the world’s smallest set-top box that offers complete High Definition DVR functionality.

The DISH Network website has a page dedicated to the Hopper. Before the announcement, the webpage was a teaser, giving hints of ‘a whole new animal in home entertainment’. Marc Lumpkin, Dish’s spokesperson, gave no comment on Friday, though he did say that the company was planning to unveil new products during their Monday press conference that was scheduled for noon in Las Vegas. Now, the page provides the full details of the Hopper, highlighting the features and how they work together to give your family enhanced home entertainment.

The whole-home DVR service gives every TV in your home DVR functionality, so that you are able to record, rewind and even pause live TV in any room of your house. You also have access to the DVR library from all your TVs, which means that when you record a show in one room, you can watch the same show in any other room. Whole-home therefore makes it possible to enjoy the DVR experience without requiring an HDTV present in every room.

DISH Network’s Hopper could help the company compete with other multi-room DVR suppliers, including Comcast, Verizon, DIRECTV as well as other rivals. In addition, their place-shifting software supplied by Sling Media, a corporate sibling, may be used to differentiate Dish from its competition. Using this software subscribers gain access to DVR content on their mobile phones, laptops and tablets.

However, only a day after DISH unveiled its multi-room DVR, Samsung and DIRECTV announced that they had collaborated to provide a multi-room DVR setup of their own. Samsung’s Smart TVs now allow the streaming of recorded programs to televisions in other rooms from the DIRECTV DVRs. This option does not require new devices to play the role that the Dish Joey’s would play, since the televisions sets manage the DVR stream on their own. The two companies have called their technology ‘the set-top box-less viewing’.

DISH Network’s New Broadband Service

DISH also announced its new broadband service in collaboration with ViaSat. The service is scheduled to launch within the first quarter of 2012. The broadband satellite service will be serving 8 million clients located in the markets that have been overlooked, which lack fiber optic or broadband coverage. The service is meant to provide speeds of 12Mbps on download and 3Mbps speeds on upload. If these speeds are actually realized, they will be providing satellite service that is remarkably fast when compared to other services in the satellite internet industry. Rural users with DSL service as their only option will be the greatest beneficiaries of this type of service.

Sign up for DISH Network Today

With so many great new features, you may be interested in learning more. Call DISH at 855-357-2283 to see how it might work in your home.

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About Alex Schenker
Alex bring a series of in-depth articles on search marketing and content management systems as well as troubleshooting tips to We Rock Your Web's collection. He is an avid tennis player, nature enthusiast, and hiker, and enjoys spending time with his wife, friends, and dogs, Bella and Lily.
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  • William Davis

    Good articles with good information. Our addiction with vast information and entertainment, makes us able to see the program as per our favorite primetime shows on NBC, ABC, Fox and CBS. We can enjoy it through recording programs also. The DISH Network has provided us more reliable and more beneficial service. Many thanks for the information.

  • AndyG

    Why don’t CBS, FOX, and NBC execs want consumers to enjoy commercial-free TV? It’s what we want! I’m a customer and employee of DISH, and I think AutoHop is great because you can easily watch commercial-free TV.

    A well known consumer advocacy group, Public Knowledge, agrees that people should have the right to control how they watch TV. They’re taking a stand for consumers by creating a petition that tells CBS, FOX, and NBC media to keep their hands out of your living room and DVR. Sign their petition to keep control of how you watch TV http://bit.ly/KigXAn

  • a web rocker

    This article caught me off guard. I guess that because I have mostly just had cable instead of satellite, I never thought that the two things were separate companies. Thank you for clarifying the difference and helping me to weigh the pros and cons of both services. I guess they both have their pluses and minuses. It is also interesting to remember that most people only considered Dish or DirectTV when they were in areas that their regular cable company did not service. I remember that time. Nowadays, most people are just sick of spending tons of money on cable. I mean it really adds up. It is as if you start only paying like $100 – $120 a month, then you might try some introductory packages or something. Then you can always cancel those if they get to be too high. However, one thing that I noticed is that many cable companies create fees and charges that are not a part of your bill in the beginning. The fluctuations can be over $20 within a year’s time. This is a lot of money to have to pay additionally for no reason every year. Dish and Direct are both low cost wherever I go. My only fear is that the service will cut out when the weather goes slightly bad. I know that Cricket Satellite service did this, but when I had it, Cricket was still a very, very new company. Chances are the service has gotten better from them.

  • a gadgetry geek

    Great article! Of all the stuff to come out of CES this year, the main thing I’m really looking forward to is the Hopper. My coworkers and I at DISH were given the opportunity to check the Hopper out before it was unveiled at CES, and I’m really looking for this being released to the public so I can get one in my house for good. With over 250 hours of HD recording space, and PrimeTime Anytime; the ability to record a three hour block of shows on ABC, NBC, FOX, and CBS, the Hopper is going to help DISH, once more, change the way we watch TV.