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Sling TV


AppleFanBoy
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I saw others mention this is another thread but I thought I would create one just for Sling TV here.

 

I got fed up with Comcast continuously raising service and rental rates for devices they never upgrade and other issues I have with them. So I cut off the TV service, kept their fast internet, and went to antenna for local channels and bought an Apple TV to use Hulu Plus as my "DVR".

 

I started having withdrawals for my sports and my kids started missing their Disney so when I got the invite for Sling TV I returned my Apple TV and bought a Roku 3. Right now its not supported by Apple TV.

 

It's good but can be better and all the talk is that it will. You can only stream on one device at a time but when I signed up the sales agent told "for right now". There is not a lot of on demand programming available for the stations you subscribe to but all talk the I've heard is that there will be similar to what you will get on cable on demand. Another limitation is you can't log into the Disney channel apps on a mobile device yet with your sling account but eventually I believe you will.

 

All in all I'm pretty satisfied and expect improvement soon and the good thing is if I'm not happy I can downgrade my package or cancel at anytime.

 

 

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I have 25/5 comcast along with hbo go and watching hbo on roku 3 i experienced not stuttering but lower resolution for a few minutes. So yeah. Yay comcast.

I have the 50 mbps tier but using WIFI currently to stream from my Roku and only experienced minimal issues and I think those were attributed to too many WIFI devices streaming at the same time.

 

 

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I tried finding away to cut out my TV viewing needs, by using the net for what i needed...

 

in the end...

 

ease won over.....

 

I have shows that I dvr and hate trying to search around hulu or netflix, or the network channels....plus they only hold like 4 weeks of content....

 

not to mention, you set it to record new ones and your done....

 

So i went to dish (direct at the time) and REALLY like their dish anywhere ( i really need to use it more) 

 

and yea, i wish the freaking fiber service around here would get it up into my neighborhood (its like 1/2 mile away, maybe less) So i can drop comcast....

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The first player in this game to unify all subscribed services under a common UI with a robust, searchable guide, will likely win. Apple TV tried, but they still have the concept of apps as channels -- why would I want to use the Watch ESPN app on Apple TV when I have ESPN on my cable box?

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TBH what my family does is my parents pay for full cable service + Netflix and the rest of the kids chip in a few bucks a month for HBO etc and we all share the logins.

 

This way I have a regular antenna for over the air signal, HBO GO, Showtime app, Watch ESPN for sports, etc. My parents don't mind because we all help pay and they want the services either way.

 

So really I pay for my internet (100/10 for $46/mo) and then toss in $15/mo to my parents. Works great for us!

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TBH what my family does is my parents pay for full cable service + Netflix and the rest of the kids chip in a few bucks a month for HBO etc and we all share the logins.

 

This way I have a regular antenna for over the air signal, HBO GO, Showtime app, Watch ESPN for sports, etc. My parents don't mind because we all help pay and they want the services either way.

 

So really I pay for my internet (100/10 for $46/mo) and then toss in $15/mo to my parents. Works great for us!

That's what we do as well. Mostly use it for the Disney Jr login for Roku. I have Fios 50/50 for $29.99 (retention offer) for 24 months. So with an antenna, TabloTV (OTA dvr), and a few Roku3's we don't have a need for cable. Don't watch much TV anyways.

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The first player in this game to unify all subscribed services under a common UI with a robust, searchable guide, will likely win. Apple TV tried, but they still have the concept of apps as channels -- why would I want to use the Watch ESPN app on Apple TV when I have ESPN on my cable box?

The problem is it is not going to be cheaper than cable or satellite and in a way it would be more expensive when you factor in the cost of the Internet connection to deliver the content.

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The problem is it is not going to be cheaper than cable or satellite and in a way it would be more expensive when you factor in the cost of the Internet connection to deliver the content.

I'm not too sure - my family only watch a handful of channels + live sports. We have to bundle Internet + Phone + TV to make it quasi-affordable, and we're paying for services (phone) and channels (TV) in a package that we'll never watch.

 

If I could get an a la carte streaming service with a "soft" DVR (flag a show, stream it on demand) with channel families that make sense (HGTV/DIY/Food Network/Cooking, CNN/MSNBC/FOXNews, etc.), I have to think that's cheaper.

 

My real hope is that this forces cable & satellite companies to lower prices.

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The problem is it is not going to be cheaper than cable or satellite and in a way it would be more expensive when you factor in the cost of the Internet connection to deliver the content.

You also have to consider you will be paying for that internet service anyway.

 

As well this is not a replacement for all things TV. 

 

Consider this, in order to get all the Disney (XD, Jr) and ESPN (2, News, SEC, etc.) channels in HD with either cable or satellite you have to pay for a step or two above their base tier.  And with satellite its only cheap for the first year.  After that your bill goes up.  So you could be paying $140+ a month for internet and TV just to get those channels after all the promotions expire.

 

Right now with Sling TV, Hulu Plus, OTA antenna, and internet I'm running at about $90 a month and no contract.

 

As always its not for everyone.  I would rather pay a little for what little I watch then pay a lot more just to watch a little more.

Edited by AppleFanBoy
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It doesn't seem to be a direct replacement for how most people I know would use it, but it is a step in the right direction.  However, it is a bit glitchy on a Roku, so far, in that I had some really weird behavior when trying to rewind and fast forward a live show.

 

A use-case example is that I had to pause one of those HGTV shows right before the end of the program where the couple chose whichever house or condo they were going to buy, after they had been shown a few by a Realtor.  Then, we went to dinner.  When we got back, it was still paused, but could not be resumed.  With the DIsh or DirecTV DVR, that kind of thing is something you take for granted as working as expected.

 

I don't know how all this will play out, but it seems like it is closer to the a-la-carte channel selection people want, but the cable and satellite operators say won't work.  They say that because there are so many channels that enough people would never choose to be included in their service, and those channels would never survive.  I'm of the opinion that we should be able to choose what we want for a more reasonable price, even if that means the sheer number of channels is significantly reduced.

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I've been using it on my iPad since I got my invite last week. It worked great for the first few days but since they opened it up to people without invites I've had constant problems with it needing to buffer. I have a gigabit fiber connection and everything else works fine when it starts having problems so I can only assume they're getting overloaded. Hopefully they fix it soon as I definitely like where it is going.

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I've been using it on my iPad since I got my invite last week. It worked great for the first few days but since they opened it up to people without invites I've had constant problems with it needing to buffer. I have a gigabit fiber connection and everything else works fine when it starts having problems so I can only assume they're getting overloaded. Hopefully they fix it soon as I definitely like where it is going.

I've had issues after the full release as well. Was trying to watch a game on ESPN via the Sling app on my Roku and it was buggy and erroring out. I ended up watching the game via the WatchESPN app on Roku using my Sling credentials.

 

 

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I'm shocked they would not come out of the gate with H.265/HEVC.

 

I doubt much, if any, of the streaming hardware in the field supports real-time H.265 decoding, particularly low-end streaming sticks, and even on PCs you probably need a recent discrete video card to have enough oomph for it (or for it to include a hardware decoder). H.265 is just coming to high-end mobile SOCs; it's probably at least a product cycle away from the likes of Roku and FireTV, so H.265 would be very much a niche option at this point.

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I doubt much, if any, of the streaming hardware in the field supports real-time H.265 decoding, particularly low-end streaming sticks, and even on PCs you probably need a recent discrete video card to have enough oomph for it (or for it to include a hardware decoder). H.265 is just coming to high-end mobile SOCs; it's probably at least a product cycle away from the likes of Roku and FireTV, so H.265 would be very much a niche option at this point.

You can run H.265 without hardware decoding off the integrated intel HD 4600, any ~60 minutes or shorter has a small enough file size to not be problematic (I got bored one day and tried). Movies, especially 4k samplers, aren't even worth trying. Also it was a better experience trying to run them off my ssd than my hard drive.

 

On topic, I'd like to see a build your own channel package option. Something along the lines of so many 'premium' channels and so many 'standard' channels for X price.

 

Clarification: premium to me is any thing thats above the lowest tier cable or satellite option.

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