Here’s How Dish TV Could Benefit From Its New Air TV Player?

by Trefis Team
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Reports suggest that Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH) is likely to launch its own TV tuner box called “Air TV Player”, which will provide local TV channels over the air through a digital antenna, along with Sling TV’s streaming service and the ability to stream Netflix.  Many “cord-cutting” consumers face the problem of not being able to access local channels if they only subscribe to a streaming service. With competition in the streaming space intensifying as AT&T launches DirecTV, Dish Network is looking at ways to attract users to its Sling TV platform. Earlier the company launched its Sling TV bundles on Comcast’s Xfinity X1 platform, which will allow the latter to boost its multi-cultural programming and give Sling TV another platform to attract consumers. With Dish’s subscriber growth is slowing down it is looking at Sling TV to make up for these losses. However, with competition intensifying in the streaming space, Sling TV needs to be innovative to attract consumers. (Read Why Dish Network Needs To Focus On Sling TV). We believe the new Air TV player, which is aimed at providing consumers more variety of entertainment, can entice users to the Sling TV platform.

See our complete analysis for Dish Network

Consumer Convenience, Variety Entertainment Options To Drive Growth

With home entertainment options no longer restricted to a Pay-TV subscription, players in this segment are looking to provide consumers with the convenience of watching all possible forms of media through one single device. Users are opting for streaming media in the form of on demand videos (TV shows and movies) provided by Netflix and Amazon Prime video and live streaming of selected TV channels. As an expensive Pay-TV subscription gets replaced by these options, players are looking at ways to provide a one stop solution for the user’s entertainment needs. Comcast already provides Netflix and Sling TV on its platform. Dish Network is now looking to attract consumers by solving for the challenge of not being able to watch local channels with a Sling TV subscription. With more than 50% of the U.S. households having a Netflix subscription, providing this option in the Air TV player can increase user appeal.

As Dish continues to lose subscribers, we expect its market share in the Pay TV market to decline from around 13.7% in 2016 to nearly 12.4% by the end of our forecast period.

Diversification into streaming services can help arrest this decline and Dish is trying hard to build a momentum around Sling TV. The latest attempt in terms of an Air TV player is aimed towards consumer convenience and also provides local channels for free through an antenna. While this should attract customers, whether it will drive revenues for Sling TV in the long term remains to be seen.

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