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Slingbox creator acquired by Echostar

September 26th, 2007 · No Comments

The pioneer of place-shifting TV and creator of the Slingbox, Sling Media, has been acquired by EchoStar, owners of the US DISH TV network, for 380 million dollars. Says EchoStar CEO Charlie Ergen: “With today’s increasingly mobile lifestyle, EchoStar’s acquisition of Sling Media will allow us to offer innovative and convenient ways for our customers to enjoy their programming on more displays and locations, including TVs, computers and mobile phones, both inside and outside of the home. This combination paves the way for the development of a host of new innovative products and services for our subscribers, new digital media consumers and strategic partners.”
Sling Media’s latest wheeze, the Sling Catcher, a PC to TV streamer designed to compete with media extenders, will debut in the UK early 2008.
Meanwhile, the company has announced two new Slingbox products for the autumn: the Slingbox Pro and Slingbox Solo. Both feature include widescreen aspect ratio support and increased streaming performance (full VGA resolution, up to 8Mbps around the home), and can also be used to control a range of Freeview, digital cable and satellite set top boxes.  The difference between the duo lies in their connectivity. The Pro offers four distinct AV inputs, each with audio: aerial, S-video and composite video inputs and outputs as well as an HD component connection for HD set top boxes. The Pro also features an integrated digital tuner. It’ll sell for 200 pounds. The Slingbox Solo can only be used to connect to a single device; it’ll sell for just 130 pounds.
Says Blake Krikorian, co-founder, chairman and CEO of Sling Media: “The tremendous success of the Slingbox in the UK demonstrates that consumers have embraced the idea of place-shifting. With the introduction of the Slingbox Pro and Slingbox Solo, we are setting an even higher standard in the place-shifting market by incorporating industry-leading video technology and a streamlined, intuitive setup process for both products.”

Tags: Broadcasting · Corporate · Trade

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