DISH Network may be hard at work trying to woo Sprint away from the clutches of SoftBank, but in the meantime, they've got a few million TV customers to satisfy. The DISH Anywhere app left a lot to be desired when it debuted, but version 2 adds much-needed features like access to the company's growing library of on-demand content. Of course, most of the on-demand content comes from HBO, Cinemax and the like, and if you're paying for them, you've already got access to the (usually better) dedicated streaming apps.
Other improvements for version 2 include a revamped user interface for tablets, with both a program guide and remote that make better use of the larger screen area. It looks like a giant remote control on your screen, so take that for what it's worth. The smartphone version of DISH Anywhere (which for some reason is still on version 1.5.12) has added support for 1080p phones like the HTC One, DROID DNA and Galaxy S4. Both versions of the app have access to live and recorded video on DISH VIP and Hopper DVRs connected to broadband, plus the ability to manage content and recording schedules remotely.
Both smartphone and tablet apps now have integrated sharing to Facebook and/or Twitter, and one feature that's downright brilliant: Audio Only mode. With this enabled, you can listen to televised content without having to watch it at the same time. That's something I've wanted forever - it sounds perfect for catching up on shows while doing the dishes or other busywork, without killing my phone's battery. Hey, Netflix: steal this feature, please.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Available today, DISH announced several enhancements to its DISH Anywhere™ mobile app, including access to On Demand programming on Android (4.0 and higher) and Apple iOS (5.0 and higher) mobile devices. All DISH customers can access On Demand content associated with their programming package regardless of their set-top box model. The update also includes DISH Anywhere integration with Twitter and Facebook, giving consumers the ability to share their viewing experiences.
To meet the growing trend of customers taking their TV shows on the go, DISH expanded access to its On Demand library to include iPhone and Android phones and tablets, a feature previously available only on the iPad. On Demand access brings viewers thousands of titles from a variety of networks that can be watched anywhere customers have an Internet connection. Since its launch in January, DISH Anywhere has transformed the ability of viewers to watch live and recorded programming anytime, anywhere.
“The ability to watch TV anywhere is only as meaningful as the shows you can view,” said Vivek Khemka, senior vice president of product at DISH. “By adding access to On Demand programming on iPhones and Android devices, only DISH gives customers the power to view all their shows, including live TV, DVR recordings and On Demand, at no extra cost.” (Remote viewing of live TV and DVR recordings requires a broadband-connected Sling-enabled DVR).
The app enhancements also allow users to instantly share their mobile viewing experiences on social networks. The new social networking feature enables viewers to post what they are watching in real-time on Facebook and Twitter. Consumers can create personalized comments to share with friends and family or, for quicker and easier postings, use hashtags and words already populated by the app.
Additionally, DISH Anywhere users can take advantage of the new “Audio Only” mode, allowing them to listen to any live or pre-recorded show while doing other activities like driving or interacting with other apps on their device.
Existing viewing features of the DISH Anywhere mobile app include the ability to watch live TV channels in a user’s programming package via Sling technology, access their personal DVR and view up to eight days of network programming via PrimeTime Anytime. DISH Anywhere DVR management features include the ability to search for programs via the guide or use keywords, schedule recordings from the app, manage recording conflicts and delete recorded shows.