Dish Brings Google Nest Hello Doorbell to Hopper DVR Platform

Dish Network Dec. 20 announced that its Hopper and Wally DVR receivers now support the Google Nest Hello Video doorbell. When the doorbell rings, Nest Hello sends on-screen notifications directly to the television.

Dish is the first pay-TV provider to integrate a Google Nest device into its ecosystem with the Device Access program. The Nest Hello announcement is the first in a series of Google Nest integrations coming to the Hopper platform.

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“Google Nest on Hopper is about giving our customers added choice and control over their home environment — with the subtle on-screen alerts delivered by the Nest Hello, customers are better equipped to hit pause and take action right away,” Rob Sadler, director of product management, said in a statement. “This is just the beginning of a powerful relationship with Google Nest and their vast portfolio of products.”

After pairing their Google Nest account with their Dish Hopper or Wally receiver, customers will receive on-screen notifications, including an image, when their Nest Hello has been pressed.

In 2018, Dish introduced the ability for Google Assistant to control its Hopper receivers. It expanded that capability earlier this year, with the introduction of the Google Assistant-enabled Dish Voice Remote.

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The Nest Hello feature is available to all broadband-connected Hopper and Wally receivers beginning today. Support for Joey (all clients) will begin rolling out in the following weeks.

Nest joins Dish’s suite of smart-home control options, including the Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and Josh.ai.

The whole-home Hopper platform claims to lead the industry in DVR features and functionality. The Hopper 3 boasts 16 tuners, two terabytes of DVR storage, live and on-demand 4K compatibility, PrimeTime Anytime, AutoHop and integrated apps Netflix, YouTube, YouTube Kids, Pandora and Amazon Prime Video, among others.

Voice-control capabilities through Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and the DISH voice remote give customers easier access to their favorite programming. Hopper (all generations) gives customers access to live, on-demand and recorded content on Dish’s online streaming app, Dish Anywhere.

Dish Network Expands On-Demand Content Offerings

Dish Network has expanded its on-demand offerings by more than 7,000 titles, including adding 11 à la carte on-demand packages users can subscribe to on a monthly basis, priced from $2.99.

The on-demand packages include original series and documentaries from Up Faith & Family, Cinedigm’s Dove Channel and Curiosity Stream, among others.

On-demand subscriptions are available to Dish customers with a qualifying programming package and an internet-connected Hopper DVR (all generations), Hopper Duo, Joey (all models) or Wally.

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“Dish’s on-demand universe is all-encompassing,” Andy LeCuyer, SVP of programming,” said in a statement. “Whether bingeing seasons of your favorite TV series on-demand or purchasing a digital copy of a new release movie, there are many avenues for customers to access the content they want, when they want it.”

Indeed, more than 70,000 of on-demand titles are available at home on a Hopper family set-top box, and while on-the-go with the DISH Anywhere app.

The DISH Anywhere app gives all customers the ability to watch the on-demand titles associated with their programming package from virtually any location. The app is available on Internet-connected mobile devices, including smartphones, tablets and computers, as well as televisions via Amazon Fire TV and Android TV.

The following on-demand subscriptions are now available to Dish subscribers, with a free preview available through Feb. 10.

Dish to Add Google Assistant to Hopper DVR

Dish Network Jan. 8 announced it is incorporating the Google Assistant software into its Hopper family of receivers. In the coming months, subscribers will be able to use the Dish voice remote to ask the software to control smart home devices, provide weather and news updates, display photos and more. This new integration builds on the Dish voice remote’s existing ability to control the TV experience, including navigation, search and content selection.

Hopper with the Google Assistant built-in will join Dish’s voice control technology suite, which includes its July 2018 integration with the Google Assistant that requires users to pair Hopper with a Google Assistant device, like speakers, phones and more, to control their TV.

“Our customers love the convenience of voice control, so we’re expanding functionality to make it even more powerful,” Niraj Desai, VP of product management, said in a statement.

With the software, subs will be able to use the voice remote to ask questions and see answers on the screen like the weather forecast or games scores. Users will also be able to control smart home devices, such as dimming the lights or adjusting the thermostat, and relive favorite memories by pulling up Google Photos on the TV screen – all with their voice.

Customers with a voice remote and broadband-connected Hopper (all generations), Joey (all models) or Wally will have access to the Google Assistant. New subs receive the voice remote with all Hopper family receivers at no extra cost; current customers without a voice remote can upgrade for $20.

 

 

Dish Debuts Google Assistant Voice Control

Dish July 9 debuted its integration with the Google Assistant for a hands-free TV entertainment experience.

Dish customers with a Hopper, Hopper Duo, Joey or Wally can control their TV using their voice when paired with an Assistant device, such as Google Home, Android phones or iPhones.

Dish is the first pay-TV provider to offer direct compatibility with the Assistant.

“Since we first introduced voice control technology, we’ve seen our customers really embrace the hands-free TV experience,” said Niraj Desai, Dish VP of product management, in a statement. “Our collaboration with Google is an exciting opportunity for us to continue meeting demand for voice and changing the way we interact with television.”

“We want to make it easy and fun for people to turn their living room into a smart entertainment center with the Assistant,” said Michele Turner, senior director, Google Smart Home Ecosystem, in a statement. “By working closely with Dish, we’ll ensure that customers can easily control their TVs through the Assistant, instead of searching for or having to share the remote.”

Customers can ask the Assistant to set recordings, adjust volume and launch apps such as Game Finder, Netflix and Pandora. Customers can also use the Assistant to navigate, play, pause, fast-forward, rewind and search content based on channel, title, actor or genre. When using search functionality, the results displayed include Dish’s live, recorded and on-demand titles, as well as Netflix’s selection of TV shows and movies.

Spanish-language support will be coming soon, according to Dish.

Dish Bows New Amazon Alexa Voice Features on Hopper

Dish June 12 introduced new Amazon Alexa voice capabilities that give customers the ability to set recordings, launch apps and navigate menus on Hopper family set-top boxes.

This update enhances the Hands-Free TV experience by building on Dish’s existing Alexa voice functions, including the ability to play, pause, fast-forward, rewind and search content.

“We are working to create the best Hands-Free TV options for our customers, and these new voice capabilities are an important step in that direction,” said Niraj Desai, Dish VP of product management, in a statement. “Dish customers already love the convenience that our Alexa compatibility brings to their home, so we’re continuously identifying popular voice commands to enhance that experience.”

In April 2017, DISH became the first pay-TV provider to offer direct compatibility with Amazon Alexa, according to the company. In October 2017, the company unveiled whole-home Hands-Free TV by extending Alexa support to all Joey clients, according to Dish.

Dish customers can ask Alexa to navigate, play, pause, fast-forward, rewind and search content based on channel, title, actor or genre. With the newest update, customers can also use Alexa to set recordings, launch apps such as Game Finder, Netflix, Pandora and YouTube, and access the Home, Guide, DVR, On Demand, Settings and Help menus.

All Dish customers with an internet-connected Hopper DVR (all generations), Hopper Duo, Joey (all models) or Wally can ask Alexa to control their TV content after pairing with an Amazon Echo, Echo Show, Echo Dot, Fire TV Cube or another Alexa-enabled device. Each Dish set-top box must be paired with its own Alexa device.

For more information, visit www.dish.com/AmazonAlexaIntegration.

Dish Activates Netflix on Hopper Duo Set-Top

As expected, Dish Network has activated the Netflix app in its Hopper Duo set-top box enabling subscribers direct access to the subscription streaming video behemoth.

Similar to other third-party installs, direct access to the streaming video pioneer requires a separate subscription.

In January, Dish rolled out the Hopper Duo, a dual-tuner HD set-top for one- and two-TV households. Hopper Duo packages the most essential features of Dish’s Hopper 3 for consumers with smaller-scale entertainment setups.

Features include a 500 GB hard drive for up to 125 hours of HD DVR recording; compatibility with Amazon Alexa voice control; universal search; Bluetooth audio support via adapter; picture-in-picture viewing; remote finder; and apps like game finder, Pandora, Dish on-demand – and now Netflix.

The average number of pay-TV set-top devices per household in the United States is 1.7, according to the Leichtman Research Group.

Leichtman found that 69% of domestic TV households have at least one TV connected to the Internet via a smart TV set, a stand-alone device (like Roku, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV stick, set-top box, or Apple TV), a video game system, and/or a Blu-ray Disc player – up from 50% in 2014, and 24% in 2010.

Dish Bows Hopper Duo Smart DVR

Dish Network Jan. 22 released Hopper Duo, a dual-tuner HD set-top DVR for one- and two-TV households.

The average number of pay-TV set-top boxes per household in the United States is 1.7, according to a recent study by Leichtman Research Group.

Hopper Duo supports a second HDTV when paired with a Joey (Joey, 4K Joey or Wireless Joey). With two tuners, Hopper Duo customers can watch or record two live programs simultaneously. If a customer is recording two live shows, they can still watch previously recorded titles from their DVR or anything from the OnDemand catalog.

The Wi-Fi-capable Hopper Duo includes a modern user interface with HD graphics and easy content discovery; a 500 GB hard drive for up to 125 hours of HD DVR recording; compatibility with Amazon Alexa voice control; universal search; Bluetooth audio support via adapter; Picture-in-Picture viewing; Remote Finder; and apps like Game Finder, Pandora and DISH On-Demand, with Netflix coming soon.

The device ships with DISH’s new voice remote.

“The average U.S.home has about two TVs connected to a pay-TV service,” Niraj Desai, VP of product management, said in a statement. “Hopper Duo is a feature-rich, high-value product for households that want DVR capacity for [up to] two screens.”

Beginning today, qualified new and existing customers can receive a Hopper Duo at no upfront cost. The Hopper Duo system requires a whole-home DVR fee of $10 per month, with an additional $7 per month required for an added Joey.