CES Day One: Dish Network ViP 922 HD DVR receiver, low-priced packages for digital transition

Dish Network started my day off with a press conference.  They announced their new Sling-loaded 922 HD DVR receiver, and it is one truly impressive piece of equipment… the first thing I saw at the show that was truly revolutionary. 

It The ViP922 has an embedded Slingbox that will allow you to watch your recorded programming wherever and whenever you want, on whatever you want.  Want to use your iPhone to watch a football game recorded on your TV a week ago?  No problem.  Want to watch it on your laptop?  You can do that, too… and use an app to turn your iPhone into a remote control to manage the action!  The included remote uses a touch panel on top and a trigger on the bottom, along with an on-screen, tile-based menu system ‘a la iPhone along with widgets for weather, etc to make part of your program guide.  The new Slinguide allows you to program your DVR via the Internet with a very easy-to-use interface.

Dish has been known for best-in-class hardware and the 922 has given them a considerable lead.  The 922 had a whole stack of CES awards to its credit, all well-deserved  Comparing the 922 to a traditional cable or satellite box is like comparing a 2009 BMW to a Model T.  It’s so far ahead that you can hardly form a basis for comparison.  I want one.

Dish also announced $9.99 satellite TV packages, meant for “lifeline” cable subscribers.  More on these as I have more information.

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