Dish Network’s Sling Adapter and Android Application Review, Bring Your TV Everywhere

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As of November 18th, Dish Network has become the first pay-TV to truly offer ‘TV Everywhere‘ with a simple FREE application on your Android device. Not only does this work with your Android device but there are applications for Blackberry, iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Windows PCs and Macs. It truly does give you the ability to access your home receiver from any device you own.

Today I received my Dish Network Sling Adapter.  The Sling Adapter is a simple USB device that attaches to the front or back of your HD DVR unit. The adapter is compatible with your current ViP® 722 or 722k HD DuoDVR receivers. If you aren’t sure what you might have, you can look at the front of your receiver on the top left and see what you are using. This particular unit is available for purchase for $99.99. There is a second option as well. You may also upgrade your service to a ViP 922 SlingLoaded DVR receiver as long as you are qualified for an upgrade.

The set up for this device is fool proof. Hook up your High Speed internet connection to your receiver and plug the device into the USB port of your choice. That’s all there is to it, as far as hooking anything up. Once everything is connected there are a few simple steps to activate the internet to your receiver, those instructions are part of the application as well as in the manual. Again, Dish made it very simple. No complicated codes or anything and they walk you through 6 steps in the menu to make it happen. I was able to set it up and start using the service in a matter of minutes.

Now that we are all set up, what to do now? Well let’s start watching some TV! Head into the Android Market and download the Dish Network remote access application. QR code below. Sign into your Dish Network account through the application and you are done. Let’s take a look at some of the screen shots I took of my Samsung Vibrant.

You have pretty much unlimited options available to you in this application. You can view your channel guide and see what’s on now, upcoming and HD only content. Once you select a show you can select ‘Record’ or ‘Watch’ and choose phone or TV. Now that is only the tip of iceberg. You also have access to your DVR recordings.

What I really like about this option is the fact that they are all grouped. All my recordings of Paranormal State for instance, are in one folder, I don’t have to scroll through a million recordings. It really streamlines my ability to watch what I want where I want.

Now on to the most important part of the product and application. How does the streaming really look? That’s a great question! It looks really good. I gave this application a gauntlet of tests. I can honestly say it performed better then I could have hoped for. First things first. I am running this on a Rooted Samsung Vibrant on Obsidian V5 beta currently. If you are unfamiliar with that ROM, it is a custom 2.2 Froyo build. I’ll share a few screens then follow up with a video for your viewing pleasure. Remember my camcorder is not amazing but will do the trick to illustrate the application.

Pretty slick right? I was successful in testing in my home and while on my home network. If you have concerns you can go HERE and test your PC and network. Be sure to be using one of the supported browsers of course, which can be located at Dish Network’s requirements page. I have Qwest running at 10 Mbps, I use their modem coupled with T-Mobiles @Home router. Everything works pretty well together for me. As I stated in the video I did test it off my Wi-Fi but sadly I live in an EDGE network area, so there was a lot of choppiness and lag when not on Wi-Fi. I would love to see how this performs in a higher end data location. Does anyone out there have this set up and using it in a 3G or 4G area? Please let us know how it works for you.

Now for the downside. Since you might be like me and be sporting the Duo receiver so you can watch TV in 2 rooms you will run into one small issue. If both TVs are on, you are stuck watching whatever channel you were last on in the application. In conjunction with that, whatever you are trying to change the channel to on your device the primary TV will change to that channel or to that DVR recording. The only other issue I ever ran into was upon launching the app. On occasion I would have to open the app twice. Since this was only launched on November 18th I am sure there will be updates and optimization done to the application. As far as both TVs being on, this is a hardware issue. Since the Sling Adapter taps into the 2nd TV tuner of your receiver, one of the two TVs running off the receiver needs to not be in use.

This can definitely be extremely useful and beneficial. For instance, you are lying in bed and your wife wants to watch something you hate. Guess what? Find your own show and plug in your head phones, then you aren’t going to the living room. Your wife will appreciate you spending time with her. Those pesky meetings at work or even having to work late and missing the game? I know personally I will be able to go to my in laws and actually watch real TV finally instead of limited cable channels.

Head on over to DISH to check out the options available and get your Sling on.

UPDATE: After some rigorous testing and working with DISH, the small issues I encountered seemed to have cleared themselves up. The solution that seemed to fix them for me was a complete reset of my house. I went through and reset my receivers, router, modem, PC and phone all off at the same time, then systematically brought things back online starting with the modem and router and continuing up from there. I am pleased to report that there seems to be no more interference or oddities happening. I will keep you all posted if issues should arise over time or not.

About the Author

Stormy Beach
I am the proud father of three, 3, 9, and 12. I recently upgraded from the Samsung Galaxy S3 to the Sony Xperia Z. Having so many kids warranted a change of pace. Let me tell you, it is mind blowing. I love Android, I love tech and I love my family. Not in that order though. I work hard, play even harder and take care of all that are around me when I can.

  • clarence hardin

    Hey, I’ve been using the sling adapter and app since last tuesday. I currently live in a 3g area, however, i work in a 4g area. Unfortunately, I stay 10 miles from the furthest point of 4g access. Never-the-less, I have had the opportunity to play with the dish app in both 3g and 4g. It does extremely well with 4g, equivalent to home wifi feed. However, 3g was a little choppy. Video consistantly froze. What helped was that i disabled background data transmissions on htc evo; also, I selected non-hd content from grid. These fixes gave me continuous playback without interruption. Hoped this helped!

    • http://androidspin.com/ Stormy Beach

      That is amazing to hear. I thought it should do pretty well. Thank you for taking the time to update us on that aspect. I know I appreciate hearing about it.

  • clarence hardin

    Hey, I’ve been using the sling adapter and app since last tuesday. I currently live in a 3g area, however, i work in a 4g area. Unfortunately, I stay 10 miles from the furthest point of 4g access. Never-the-less, I have had the opportunity to play with the dish app in both 3g and 4g. It does extremely well with 4g, equivalent to home wifi feed. However, 3g was a little choppy. Video consistantly froze. What helped was that i disabled background data transmissions on htc evo; also, I selected non-hd content from grid. These fixes gave me continuous playback without interruption. Hoped this helped!

    • victor

      hello i was wondering how is it you disabled the background data transmissions on your evo.. what does this exactly do. did it disrupt your service or phone when you disable this.. thanks looking forward to getting it…

  • Cchoncek

    I know that Dish recommends using this configuration only on screens that are at least 4.3″. Has anyone tried this on their Droid Incredibles yet, however? Sure don’t want to invest in the $100 adapter if I’m not going to be able to use it on my beloved DINC.

    • http://androidspin.com/ Stormy Beach

      This worked out perfect on my Samsung Vibrant. It is only a 4″ screen. The only issues I ran into were resolved with resetting my my network in my house. Which I should have thought about on my own since I have a very connected house. I have not testes this on any screen size smaller then 4 inches. It sure did come in handy when I was working on my car the other day, got to watch the Civil war game while I worked. Was pretty nice.

      • http://twitter.com/LVMortgageChick LV Mortgage Chick

        i cannot get it to work on my vibrant! what did you do to get yours to work?

    • Jasonmcd1

      I called dishnet work, explained that my contract with them was up and I will be willing to sign a new contract for a free sling. They said that I did not have to sign a new contract and that they will reduce my bill by $10 a month to offset the sling. I said sure. When I went through checkout. She said that the sling adapter came up as no charge. She said that she will still take $10 off my bill for 2 months and give me the sling adapter for free. You might want to call and see if they will give you one for free like I received.

    • nate

      only 30 dollars now as of feb 1

    • xwera43

      Worked fine on my DInc at 3.7″ also fine on an iPhone4 at only 3.5″. (I know it’s an Android site but someone might be curious about the iP4.)

  • RubJr

    Since there is only one USB port, how do you handle, External hard drive and the sling adapter. What if I would have to go “Wireless” instead of hardwire the 722. Now there are three devices that want USB ??

  • http://www.facebook.com/pmichaelson Pete Michaelson

    On my iPhone 4 (I know this was about Android but what the hell) it takes a minute or so to optimize its streaming rate before it becomes steady and clear. At work I get one to two bars of 3G at best and, after a minute or stops and starts it becomes steady.

    Nice review.

  • Danielle Royster

    I have to agree. I love, Love, LOVE the DISH Remote Access app. I sometimes travel, and although it is not far, I definitely love my TV as well. Having the app on my phone, I’m able to use it as a remote, check my DVR and resolve and scheduling conflicts and I can also watch live TV no matter where I go, and what time it is. I do highly recommend trying DISH Remote Access because it’s easy, it’s free and its very simple to use and since I’m an employee with DISH Network, I can enjoy playing with it all day!!

    -Danielle

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=36615721 Ryan Burleyson

      The sling adapter is junk. I have a very high quality router and cable download speed of 30mbps and the sling adapter provides a picture on my ipad 2, iphone4, and computer of a low grade you tube video.  There is no buffering however.  I upgraded to the slingbox HD Pro, it and the quality is just as good as a movies you download from itunes and watch on your ipad.  Sling adapter was just a marketing scheme by Dish to get customers.  The product isnt event supported by Slingbox.  My adapter was out for 4 days, and all Dish asked me to do was to reset me box. Turned out the server my receiver was down.  Today’s monitoring tools quickly tell when something like that is down.  I had Dish for 2 weeks and switched right back to Time Warner and fortunately talked Dish out of a termination fee. I would rather pay an extra 20 dollar to Time Warner for good service then deal with sketchy service and poor tech support.  In 11 years i never had a need to call Time Warner for support. I switched to save 20 dollars a month and it turned into a headache.

  • Angegome

    On wifi or Ethernet connection on this product works great. For 3G, I can’t even get a picture. Does anyone have any tricks to make this work on 3G. I have to flip to wifi to watch TV but no use in doing that when my wifi is at my house and I might as well just watch TV in the family room. By the way I’m using Android on a Nexus S phone. Thanks.

  • Dennis

    Which Android phone does Verizon advertise that will work the Sling adapter, TVanyWhere and the VIP722 receiver? Thanks – Dennis

  • Calvinyoung

    can recorded programs from the external hard drive be down loaded and recorded on the computer?

  • Projects2019

    Hey I just found this new app on the android market called “How to Kiss”. I found the content, graphics, the kissing tips and all the sharing features awesome. Check out the app at https://market.android.com/details?id=com.inoxapps.htk&feature=search_result

  • Jmcintire222

    Anyone tried it on a a Archos Internet tablet yet?

  • Vinceh520

    Has anyone used this with a Sprint Transform 3g  If so, please respond with any advice you might have.

  • Parker

    All this is right about the Sling adapter from DISH.
    You get to use it everywhere you go on your phone or computer. The only thing
    now is that the Sling adapter is free! That is of course after the rebate but
    why wouldn’t you want it? You get LIVE TV everywhere you go and you can watch
    your DVR recording. As a customer and employee with DISH I purchased one when
    it came out and I use it for everything. My daughter also loves that she can
    watch her cartoons everywhere we go. My biggest use for it is when I’m
    traveling. So if you haven’t check out the Sling adapter, you should go to DISH
    now!

  • Kathryn Oliver

    I have the dish Network ap and can watch TV, but how do I access the sling adapter from my tablet?

  • http://StraightTalkPhoneswithuseofsling jeff

    Staight talk had a Nokia E71 phone that would work with Sling that was a Year or so ago. I cannot find that phone now it might be Available or not available now due to Newer technology and newer phones coming out all of the time. What phones does Staight Talk have on the Market that will work with Sling? I know they have Android Phones out that will probably work with it. BUT the Androids that they have now in this Area works on Sprint and Sprint does not have any Signal in this area or towers and the Sprint Androids will not work in this Area. They do not as of yet have a Verizon or AT&T phone that will work as far as Android that will work in this Area. So my Question is what Staright Talk Phones will work with Sling or is there a Page to go to that lists the Models? Hopefully I can find one that does not have a Small Screen. ( Maybe something might be the size of a Blackberry or the Nokia E71 as I stated above size screen ) I could use a IPod Touch but cannot get no signal at work to use on my Lunch Hour so I was going to try to use a Unlimited $45 Data Plan by Staighttalk to do so.

  • Janice

    HTC Vivid…am able to get live tv on my laptop, but not on the phone. I downloaded the dish remote access app on my phone, and can see the guide, but when I click on “Watch”, it says my receiver is not online (although it is). anyone have this problem and figure out how to fix it?

    • Kathryn

      Hi Janice, I went through this and called customer service. it turned out I had the wrong receiver selected. On the upper right of the screen after you are logged in are the receiver choices. The one with the sling adapter wasn’t showing until I clicked on the one shown there. This may be your problem. Kathryn

  • Janice

    Have an HTC Vivid. Downloaded the dish remote access app, and can view the guide, but when I click on a program and click on “watch”, it says my receiver is not online. However, I have confirmed it is, and I am able to go to dish online on my laptop and watch tv. Anyone have this problem and was able to resolve it?

  • felisha

    can you watch dish network from your mobile device (phone,tablet,laptop,desktop, ect..) with out the sling adapter or do you have to have that to watch it mobile cuz i got the app for dish already but i dont have it all installed yet at my house so i dont know if you can watch it with out having the sling adapter an if you do how much more a month does it cost? how would i go about gettin one for free?

  • mary hutchison

    I need directions on how to set up and use my sling adapter to my new computer. I bought it last year and used it once. I had to get a new laptop and now do not know how to use it and would like to.

  • BHERRINGTON

    Can I use my smart phone as a tether for a hot spot and connect to a wi-fi enabled tv for remote veiwing at another location?

  • zkoonce

    We just got the sling adapter yesterday along with the hopper. It works great when using WiFi but when I try to use it on Verizon 3g or 4g net work it says that it is unable to connect to the internet. I know I have plenty of service because and can perform other task just fine. Any suggestions? My phone is the HTC rezound.

  • carlos maldonado

    will sling work on the Iphone 5 ??

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