Dish is upping the TV experience in hotels thanks to better integration with Netflix and also the launch of a new live TV streaming service that lets hotel guests watch live TV channels on any device, including their smartphones.
Dish made the announcement this week during HITEC 2019, the hospitality-focused conference taking place in Minneapolis.
On the Netflix side of things, the company has confirmed the integration of Netflix with its EVOLVE hotel entertainment platform. Besides access to Netflix in general, the integration also allows hotel guests to log in to their own Netflix account during the stay so they can access their own list of TV shows and movies.
What’s more is although guests have to log in to their own accounts to get the personalized experience, they do not have to worry about logging out again when leaving. As the system is reset with login credentials removed when the guest checks out.
Dish first confirmed Netflix integration back in 2018 and initially said it would take a few months to implement properly. Considering the announcement has only recently been made, it would appear the readying of the feature has taken longer than expected.
What is possible more interesting is the live TV service. While most hotels already offer access to live TV channels, what Dish is doing is bringing a streaming element to the experience.
Due to this, users are not limited to watching live TV channels on the actual TV but can access the same channels via any compatible smart device connected to the hotel’s Wi-Fi, including smartphones.
An additional benefit of this approach is that multiple guests in the same room can now watch different channels, on different devices, at the same time.
In fact, this is not limited to the room either. Considering the streaming service is accessed over Wi-Fi, guests can watch the live TV channels on any device, anywhere within the hotel complex as long as they are connected to the Wi-Fi. As Dish puts it, guests can enjoy the free live TV “in the lobby and at the gym or pool.”
Although Dish owns Sling TV, the current number one live TV streaming service in the U.S., this service is different to Sling TV. It is meant as more of a white-label solution that hotels can customize to their own liking and this also goes for the channels as well. Dish states the service offers access to twenty-four live TV channels, but the channel lineup is “selected by the hotel.”
Since the launch of the platform, Dish has continually looked to tap in to industry changes to ensure the experience is in tune with viewer consumption habits. For example, in announcing the latest features, Dish Business Vice President, Alistair Chatwin, explained these features are designed to account for consumer expectations of "choice and control over what they watch and how they get their content.”