EchoStar adds new Slingbox; upgrades converter box

Thu, 09/25/2008 - 8:35am
Brian Santo

Sling Media is offering a new Slingbox, tagged the Pro-HD, capable of streaming HD from a home television source to a laptop or desktop computer in and around the house.

Sling Media’s Pro-HDMeanwhile, Dish Network now has an updated version of its DTVPal digital-to-analog converter box it’s calling The DTVPal Plus, which features a new digital tuner the company says works better in weak signal areas.

Sling Media and Dish Network are both part of the EchoStar family of companies.

Sling Media’s Pro-HD can handle over-the-air HD digital signals (ATSC), digital cable channels (Clear QAM), HDTV cable set-top boxes, HDTV satellite receivers or HD DVRs.

Additionally, for customers who have a high-speed broadband connection that features upload speeds of 1.5 Megabits per second or higher, the Slingbox Pro-HD can stream HD signals outside the home to just about anywhere you can receive a high-speed network connection, the company said.

The Pro-HD, which will replace the Slingbox Pro, has a suggested retail price of $299.99.

Sling Media also updated its SlingPlayer for Windows software, for PCs running Windows XP or Windows Vista. The updated version features a live video buffer built into the software, allowing the viewer to pause and rewind a live video stream.

As for Dish Network’s new converter box, in addition to the enhanced digital tuner, DTVPal Plus includes an analog pass-through feature, which means it can take both analog and digital signals, useful for pulling in low-power stations and for other broadcasters who have been exempted from the Feb. 17 deadline.

DTVPal Plus has a suggested retail price of $69.99, so when purchased with a coupon from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration's (NTIA) TV Converter Box Coupon Program, it can be had for at most $29.99.

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