End of the Road for SlingCatcher?


Less than a year on the market, the SlingCatcher‘s entrance fee has dropped by 2/3rds from retail launch pricing of $300 down to a rock bottom $99.99 at Best Buy. I can only assume sales have been horrible. Which pains me on personal level. The digital media Swiss Army knife vision of the SlingCatcher was a factor in joining Sling Media way back when. And the inability to execute on that vision was also a factor in my decision to leave. (“losing my religion“) However, despite it’s imperfections and unfulfilled promise, $100 to merely stream from a Slingbox to another television in the home or abroad is a great value – neverminding those hobbled extender and DMA capabilities. Here’s hoping the inventory purge foreshadows a new SlingCathcer in the pipeline with the sort of modern hardware and features found in the current crop of media streamers. But with Sling’s corporate ownership, and resultant focus on the DISH Network Slingbox DVR, I wouldn’t count on it.

13 thoughts on “End of the Road for SlingCatcher?”

  1. I love my slingcatcher. I use it to stream Tivo from my 58″ HDTV to my bedroom, thus saving me from paying for a DVR in my bedroom. The quality is great, it is silent, there is no downside. I will be very upset if this technology goes away

  2. How big’s your bedroom TV? There could be a resolution downside… ;) And the button press lag takes a little getting used to. Having said that, I always dreamed of a two SlingCatcher model world. One for $80 – $120, merely to speak to a Slingbox. And then the tricked out model with all sorts of media adapter/extender functionality. Sadly, I think we’re headed for a world of neither.

  3. Like many of us, I was hoping the slingcatcher would be a sort of XBMC/popcornhour streaming media player that could also act as a sling client. Not so much.


  4. Rick,
    I use my Slingcatcher the exact same way. Use it pretty much every day.

    Wish I could find the $99 deal here in Columbus. I’d pick up another.

    It’s weird to realize how briefly the SC has been on the market considering how long ago it was announced/demoed at CES. I still remember getting a walk-through of the SC from you at CES ’08.

  5. I picked up there clearance stock at BestBuy and was streaming from my PRO-HD and I get alot of lost frames and freezing every 30-40 seconds. Seems like a buffer issue. I am wondering whether it is my local network.

    I have friends that are on assignment in middle east and they use a sling Catcher and love it. They said it is like they are back in the states. They are on assignment for 5 yes so they said it is a savior.

  6. I3dguru are you streaming it over wifi or over a lan? Can anyone comment on how bad the ‘remote control lag’ is over a local lan?

  7. Sling isn’t the same company Dave, that’s no doubt. I have 3 boxes and 2 catchers. In I was on the waiting list when the Classic was launched. Recently I had an issue with my Pro HD because it stopped streaming 16:9 with my D* box. I asked Sling Support for help and their response was to ask me to pay for help. Dish’s ownership of Sling has really taken what was once a great product and turned it down hill.

  8. The remote lag is annoying. It does make it hard for me on the TiVo to fast forward and rewind accurately.

    However, there’s nothing else available that can easily stream my bedroom Tivo HD to my work out room and it’s already paid for itself in what it saved me from buying another TiVo for that room.

    I agree with the other comments that the Dish ownership of Sling has been a debacle. A company that used to be trendy and hip with the whole place shifting thing has been sliding further and further into relative obscurity and total lackluster products and worse support.

    Hell, they still haven’t even released an HD Slingbox client for the Mac!

  9. I paid about $270 when it just came out. I use to abroad to stream U.S TV. The best $270 I have ever spent. If they come up with a new one, I will surely upgrade. If they don’t, I may buy an extra one, just to make sure I don’t stuck with nothing, if they stop making it and my currnet one breaks.

  10. Amazon.com has it for $99 through Monday I think, as part of their “Black Friday” sale. Supposedly if you update the firmware, a lot of the early problems are resolved. I just ordered one and I am hoping for the best.

  11. I have one. I love it. I stream anything from my computer to my tv. I also connect directly to my slingbox without turning on my tv. Slingcatcher is great and should be marketed to expats everywhere.

  12. I just upgraded my connections to component to sling to a now HDTV upstairs, and the quality in HD is great as well. I get about 8000 kbps over wi-fi in the home network.

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