Dish on Tuesday has officially come out with the AirTV Player, an Android-powered streaming device that the company trumpets as "a single platform" that threads video-on-demand streaming, internet TV, and OTA local channels together.
Dish AirTV Player
Folks residing in major cities such as New York and Los Angeles are often the only ones who can replace their cable subscription with a single device or subscription service; other people in remote areas often don't have the privilege. Sure, Sling TV, PlayStation Vue, or DirecTV can be had to net oneself the majority of cable channels, but to get local networks, users would need to buy an antenna separately.
Doing all of that, however, should not come to pass, since the AirTV Player is finally here.
Additionally, because the AirTV Player is essentially an Android TV device, users may install the apps they choose to install, but just in case, staple streaming apps such as Netflix, Sling TV, and YouTube come preloaded.
The AirTV Player, which physically looks like a trendier and less-serious Apple TV, replete with a blue trim, and partnered with a thematically similar remote control, supports built-in voice input via the remote, which essentially pushes it atop the ranking of top set-top boxes or media players available today. There's also a dedicated button on the remote control for easy Sling TV and Netflix access, alongside a locator button for when the remote is misplaced — a scenario that will, in all likelihood, occur.
The AirTV Player is also capable of 4K video playback that is if, needless to say, users have compatible Ultra HD TV sets, alongside streaming services with support for 4K content, which is true of Netflix and Amazon.
For some, the Dish's design choices may be a tad bit off-putting, but looks are fleeting and can be set aside after a while with this kind of device. What matters most is that the AirTV Player can bundle video streaming services and local channels together, support 4K playback, and arrive with an excellent ecosystem, considering that it's an Android TV device.
Everything In One Place
OTA channels will remain separate from the user's Sling TV subscription, but the AirTV Player integrates it seamlessly into the same channel guide. Through this, everything is neatly sorted in one place, despite hailing from different services.
Pricing And Availability
The AirTV Player is available now for $129, which comes bundled with an OTA adapter. Users may also opt for the set-top box itself for just $99, and buy the OTA adapter at a later date for $39. But going for the main bundle might be worth it for Sling TV subscribers, as they'll get a $50 credit if they do purchase the adapter.
What do you think about the AirTV Player? Could it replace your current set-top box setup? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below!