Dish Network has opened access to the Hopper 3, a next-gen whole-home DVR platform that’s packed with 16 tuners and 4K video capabilities.
Dish said qualified new and existing customers can receive one Hopper 3 for no upfront cost. Others can get their hands on it for $15 per month, plus $7 per month for each Joey client, including Dish’s new 4K Joey.
Dish unveiled the Hopper 3 at last month’s CES gadgetfest in Las Vegas.
The Hopper 3 will also support some elements from previous-generation Hopper platforms, including Sling Media place-shifting technology and AutoHop. The Hopper 3 will also support MoCA 2.0 (for whole-home support via coax lines), a gigabit Ethernet port, and a USB 3.0 port for expanded storage.
The 16-tuner device allows subs to attach up to six Joey clients, enabling them to watch seven different shows at the same time. Hopper 3 users can also watch and record up to 16 shows at once.
Taking advantage of the new Hopper’s 4K resolution capability, the new device also lets viewers stitch four live HD streams onto the TV screen at the same time – what Dish calls “Sports Bar Mode.”
Dish said the Hopper 3 will launch the Netflix app and integrate Netflix titles into the Hopper 3’s “universal” search platform in the “coming weeks.” Dish has also announced plans to bring YouTube to the Hopper platform.
The 16-tuner Hopper 3 gives bragging rights to Dish, enabling it to one-up Cablevision Systems’ multi-room DVR and a multi-device X1 setup that Comcast is testing that enables customers to record up to 15 shows at once. Verizon FiOS TV’s Quantum TV platform lets usersrecord up to 10 shows at once when they combine the functions of two Arris-made Verizon Media Servers.
“Packed with industry firsts, Hopper 3 is the most advanced DVR in the world,” Vivek Khemka, Dish’s EVP and CTO , said in a statement. “It provides our customers with the innovative features they loved on our legacy Hopper DVRs, while additionally delivering the ultimate, conflict-free entertainment experience.”
Dish will try to pump sub numbers with the Hopper 3 in the new year. It lost 23,000 video subs in Q3 2015, ending the period with 13.91 million.
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