Blog Post

Dish just secured rights to launch an internet TV service

Stay on Top of Enterprise Technology Trends

Get updates impacting your industry from our GigaOm Research Community
Join the Community!

Dish (S DISH) and Disney (S DIS) confirmed a Wall Street Journal report that they’ve reached a retransmission agreement late Monday, and they did so with a bang: Not only does the agreement force Dish to turn off automated ad skipping for ABC shows, it also gives Dish the rights to include ABC and ESPN programming “as part of an Internet delivered, IP-based multichannel offering,” according to a press release.

In other words: Dish just leapfrogged Verizon, (S VZ) Sony (S SNE) and others and sealed a deal with ABC to launch an internet-based TV service. There have been rumors for a while that Dish was looking to launch such a service, in part because it would help the company to address customers unwilling or unable to access satellite TV.

Dish isn’t entering the race to create internet TV unprepared: The company already operates DishWorld, an internet-based subscription service for foreign-language TV from India, Vietnam, China and other countries that primarily targets expats, and is available through Roku and other devices.

DishWorld has long been Dish’s online TV testbed, and Geoff Campbell, VP of online strategy for DISH Digital, told me last year that Dish was closely observing DishWorld to learn for future ventures. “There will be implications from what we are doing for domestic programs,” he said at the time — and with ABC on board, one should expect that DishWorld is getting even more attention these days.

Dish photo courtesy of (CC BY 2.0) Flickr user Dave Lindblom.

10 Responses to “Dish just secured rights to launch an internet TV service”

  1. richardgarrison

    Two of biggest perks – no more sling required to view TV anywhere in USA and potential unlimited storage for DVR. Long term perk is the potential to eliminate satellites for individual home reception as the technology no longer makes sense and is a major waste of bandwidth. The big limitation is the bandwidth caps imposed by ISPs.

  2. Dave Warner

    This deal could put Comcast in a REALLY tight spot. If other broadcasters follow Disney’s lead here, NBCU can’t afford to be seen as a holdout, as that might raise the ire of regulators and put the kibosh on the Comcast-TWC deal. An IPTV service might also allow Charlie Ergen to claim that Comcast’s data caps are anti-competitive. Wouldn’t THAT be interesting?

  3. Nikato Muirhead

    Wait until the dongle for vip 922 and hopper come. The plan is no more line of site issues. Dish will pump out the bandwidth and put their programs on the spectrum