SlingTV Unveils New Service Allowing Multiple Streams of Fox, HBO Programming
The service costs $20 a month.
Sling TV on Wednesday unveiled a new live TV streaming service that allows customers to watch as many as three streams at the same time.
The new service expands on the original Sling TV offering that launched last year, which allowed only one stream at a time. Both services cost $20, but the three-stream option comes with limited programming. Fox Networks Group has signed on to the three-stream plan, as have AMC, A&E, Turner and Univision. Pay TV channels like HBO and Cinemax are available for an additional fee. But the service does not have Disney or ESPN, which were launch partners for the one-stream plan.
"Since launch, our customers have asked for more channels and multiple streams," says Sling TV CEO Roger Lynch. "We believe our new multi-stream service, anchored by a strong lineup of Fox content, including top franchises like Empire and The Americans on Fox and FX, as well as access to Major League Baseball in 15 markets, including the New York Yankees, is the first step in answering their requests."
People who subscribe to online-only services such as Netflix and HBO Now argue that multiple streams allow several members in one family to view content without having to pay for additional memberships. Currently, Netflix's standard plan allows two streams at once and HBO also allows for multiple streams.
Detractors worry that multi-stream services encourage password sharing and deter people from paying for their own subscriptions. HBO executives have acknowledged that people share passwords for their over-the-top and authenticated streaming services, but said they have no plans to tighten the reins as long as its not material to their business.
"We're proud to partner with Dish and Sling TV to offer our brands Fox Broadcasting, FX, National Geographic and Fox Sports as part of Sling TV's multi-stream service," said Fox Networks Group president Randy Freer. "This flexible platform, which allows viewers to access our industry-leading programming, ranging from Empire to American Crime Story, the World Series, the Super Bowl and our massively popular local sports, at home or on the go, reflects our commitment to providing the customer with a better and more seamless TV experience."
Dish Network launched Sling TV in 2015 as an effort to lure customers who are put off by subscribing to a traditional cable bundle. The service, which offers a skinny bundle of popular broadcast and cable networks, features no contracts and easy cancelation. While its focus is on live TV, the service also provides some on-demand content.
The three-stream plan, which is currently in a beta testing phase, is free for seven days for new customers. Sling TV's original one-stream plan remains unchanged.