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Dish Debuts Scaled-Down Hopper DVR

Hopper Duo can receive OTA signals when used with adapter

Taking aim at homes with one or two TVs, Dish Network has introduced the Hopper Duo, an HD-DVR that sports two tuners alongside several features that are also integrated with its higher-end, flagship whole-home DVR, the Hopper 3.

The Hopper Duo features the current Hopper user interface, universal search, a remote finder, compatibility with Amazon Alexa, and apps such as Game Finder and Pandora, with an integration with Netflix “coming soon.” The new device works in tandem with a Joey box (the Joey baseline client, 4K Joey or Wireless Joey).

The Hopper Duo also includes a 500GB hard drive (enough to store up to 125 hours of HD video), support for Bluetooth audio, (via an adapter), Wi-Fi, Dish’s VOD service and picture-in-picture viewing, and ships with Dish’s new voice remote. This product page also notes that Hopper Duo users can add an adapter to receive over-the-air broadcast TV signals.

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Dish noted that Hopper Duo users can watch or record two live programs at the same time, and can still watch DVR recorded content or anything from its VOD catalog while the customer is recording two live shows at the same time.

Dish said qualified new and existing subs can get the Hopper Duo for no upfront costs, though it does require a whole-home DVR fee of $10 per month, and an additional $7 per month for any Joeys that are connected to it.

“The average US home has about two TVs connected to a pay-TV service,” Niraj Desai, Dish’s vice president of product management, said in a statement. “Hopper Duo is a feature-rich, high-value product for households that want DVR capacity for only one or two screens.”

The more powerful Hopper 3, launched at the CES 2016, supports 4K video, integrates Sling Media’s place-shifting technology, packs 16 tuners, and lets users attach up to six Joey clients, allowing for Hopper 3 customers to watch seven different shows at once or record up to 16 shows at once.

Dish ended Q3 2017 with 13.2 million pay TV subscribers (a number that includes Sling TV subs), but has not said what percentage of them are on its Hopper platform.