It’s not a secret that linear television distributors might be facing an uphill battle for relevance going forward.
In an effort to keep existing customers and perhaps entice new ones, Dish Network is adding a DraftKings betting app for customers, which promises to offer live odds and information along with the ability to place bets within the app.
Obviously location restrictions still apply; it might be hard to tell from how prevalent gambling content has become, but it’s still only legal in a small number of states, and DraftKings isn’t an available sportsbook in all of them. Still, it’s clear which way things are trending, and it’s hard to imagine widespread availability NOT coming to the United States in the near future.
From Dish’s release, which describes how the app will be integrated for existing Dish Hopper customers as well as Sling and Boost Mobile subscribers as well:
“The integration with DraftKings is an exciting enhancement for our customers and a great addition to the growing DISH TV Hopper platform — a one-stop entertainment hub,” said Brian Neylon, Group President, DISH TV. “We’re thrilled to work with DraftKings to amplify the sports-fan experience, and extend the DraftKings footprint across our unique suite of services, including SLING TV and Boost Mobile, with potential applications across our 5G wireless buildout in the future.”
DISH TV customers with an internet-connected Hopper family receiver will be able to access the DraftKings app to view betting odds and fantasy contests. They can initiate bets or contest entries with DraftKings directly from their TV, then set recordings and watch the live sports that correspond with those bets or fantasy teams.
Once a bet or fantasy contest entry is initiated, customers will be prompted via text message through DraftKings-created technology to complete the transaction within the DraftKings app on their mobile device. Once launched, DISH TV customers can initiate bets for NCAA basketball, NBA, and NHL from the app via Hopper, with additional features to come.
The app itself will be available regardless of whether DraftKings currently operates in your state, but it’s possible that the ability to initiate bets via TV isn’t even really the draw here. After all, gamblers have their own apps/services/alternatives, and for the more serious player the TV interface might not be appealing. What could be appealing, though: the look of the app overlay, which sort of promises to mimic a casino sportsbook experience.
It’s available now, if you’re a Dish customer or considering being one and have interest.