I like streaming “live” TV shows, but there’s only one little problem. You can’t easily time-shift them. Now, Sling TV is cooking up a solution: a cloud DVR service. Speaking as someone who has been time-shifting TV since the Betamax–VHS VCR wars, I’m thrilled about this news.
This service will only be available as limited cloud DVR beta program for Roku users. The invitation-only beta program will begin in December, with support for additional devices to follow in the coming months.
The plan is for the Sling TV’s cloud DVR service to let you save your recordings for months. It will also boast features such as conflict-free recording, the ability to pause, rewind or fast-forward recorded content, and simple space management.
At launch, the beta program will offer 100 hours of cloud DVR storage at no extra charge to beta Roku users. Over time, Sling TV plans to listen to its customers to extend its features. Looking ahead, the company already plans to enable customers to get more storage and protect recordings.
For starters, Sling TV will ofter the following features:
- Availability — Cloud DVR will be available across all Roku devices to beta customers who subscribe to the single-stream service, Sling Orange, and/or the multi-stream service, Sling Blue.
- Entertainment on your time — Record movies, episodes or full series, with the ability to pause, rewind or fast-forward recorded content.
- Conflict-free recording — Users may record multiple programs simultaneously, with no recording conflicts.
- Easy access — DVR content is integrated directly into Sling TV’s “My TV” screen for immediate access to recordings.
- Simple space management — Sling TV automatically manages DVR space to make room for new recordings by deleting the oldest “watched” recording when capacity is full.
Unfortunately, this DVR functionality will not be available on all channels. Sling hasn’t said yet yet which channels won’t be getting the service. It’s also not clear how many shows you’ll be able to record at once.
Sling isn’t the first over-the-top content (OTT) service to offer a cloud DVR service. That honor goes to Sony’s PlayStation Vue. But, as Roger Lynch, Sling TV’s CEO, said in a statement, “Unlike other OTT services, we’re delivering a true cloud DVR with no 28-day restriction on your recordings”.
Want to try it? Customers may request an invitation to the beta DVR cloud program now.