AirTV OTA DVR Available As Public Beta

Dave Zatz —  March 6, 2018 — 4 Comments

Sure enough, as leaked back in January, AirTV OTA DVR capabilities have been enabled to record antenna network television shows – think. The feature is currently available, in beta form, to original AirTV Player hardware … vs AirTV placeshifting hardware, which may receive support in the near future.

AirTV began rolling out a free open beta test of its new “Local Channels DVR” for AirTV Player customers. The Local Channels DVR requires an external storage device to record free over-the-air (OTA) channels (like ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC) received via an OTA antenna and AirTV Adapter. The new feature joins Sling TV’s in-app Cloud DVR and gives users access to recorded OTA programming alongside recorded OTT content.

AirTV, a sister subsidiary of Sling TV under satellite television provider DISH, lays out all sorts of beta caveats here – along with several USB drive recommendations, ranging from 64GB to 1TB of storage. So the good news is the clever service is free, at least for the moment, and the hardware is affordable at about $100. However, it is early days here and I don’t imagine the DVR functionality compares to Tablo and TiVo’s years of experience and (tuner counts).

4 responses to AirTV OTA DVR Available As Public Beta

  1. Farty Fartopolis March 6, 2018 at 7:21 pm

    I’m so confused by this product.

    It seems like their biggest selling point (ota) over the competition (AppleTV, roku) and all their branding efforts (AIR! tv) is based around an optional accessory.

  2. They basically whitelabeled an existing Technicolor Android box is my guess and why the tuner is a USB accessory. But I agree they probably have a difficult time communicating why exactly someone would want an AirTV device and explaining the distinction between the two products. The original is best suited for Sling TV customers who need a STB at the television whereas the newer Slingbox-based solution should ultimately be more agnostic and makes more sense to me as a geeky long time placeshifter.

    By the by, Farty Fartopolis beats Farty McFartface – I approve.

  3. You can purchase a digital converte for $30 dollars and Hook up you’re external hard drive and get free recordings on OTA programming. I have two for 5 years and they work perfectly.

  4. Right, but there are many benefits to a higher tech solution including superior guide, broader recording options, integration in this case with Sling TV, and the big one for me is viewing those recordings on other televisions or mobile devices – some within the home, some beyond. Different folks will have different requirements. Also different budgets and comfort levels with tech.

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