It looks like Dish Network will finally make use of its SlingMedia assets, as its subscribers will be able to watch their satellite TV programming on their iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch starting in September, according to an AP report. Support for Blackberry devices will also be rolled out that month, and Android users will be able to join in on the fun in October.
Users will be able to access live programming from anywhere, as long as they’ve got the right equipment at home. Using the Dish apps will either require an existing Slingbox, or an upgrade to Dish’s SlingLoaded DVR. And since it’s based on Slingbox technology, it will also come with the same restrictions, meaning that you won’t be able to watch a channel on your iPad and a different one on your TV unless you have a DVR with two tuners.
Dish parent company Echostar bought SlingMedia three years ago for $380 million, but Dish has been slow to integrate SlingMedia technology into its pay TV products and services. A DVR with Slingbox features was announced in early 2009, but has only been available to customers since April.
SlingMedia has continued to market its products independently of the Dish brand, publishing apps for the iPhone as well as Blackberry and Android handsets. The company states on it website that it will add “full iPad support” soon.
This essentially means that Dish’s iPad support won’t be anything that customers of other pay TV subscribers won’t have access to — but the closer cooperation of the two corporate entities could give SlingMedia an important promotional boost as well as offer Dish an alternative to other company’s TV Everywhere efforts.
Related content on GigaOM Pro: The Ultimate Guide To TV Everywhere (subscription required)