Sling TV launches free live news service amid COVID-19 crisis

Sling TV
The free Sling TV offers comes as the streaming TV service’s parent company, Dish Network, is temporarily settling some of its broadcast channel blackouts to ensure its subscribers have access to news. (Sling TV)

Sling TV today rolled out its "Stay in & SLING!” initiative which includes a free tier of its streaming TV service with live news to help consumers stay up to date on the COVID-19 crisis.

The Sling TV free experience currently includes news from ABC News Live, Fox News, select local FOX affiliates along thousands of movies and shows suitable for kids and families. It’s available through apps on a Roku, Amazon Fire TV or Android devices, or by visiting sling.com in Chrome, Safari or Edge browsers.

The company said current Sling TV subscribers can access free content from Sling TV within the user interface on any Sling TV-supported device, without changing their subscription.

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"To stay informed in these uncertain times, Americans need access to news from reputable sources," said Warren Schlichting, group president at Sling TV, in a statement. "With many Americans finding themselves staying at home, we have an opportunity to use our platform to help them deal with this rapidly evolving situation."

The free Sling TV offers comes as the streaming TV service’s parent company, Dish Network, is temporarily settling some of its broadcast channel blackouts to ensure its subscribers have access to news.

The satellite provider and Cox Media Group said to “keep communities safe, healthy and informed,” they are suspending the contractual retransmission dispute between the two companies. Dish said it also reached a short-term agreement to restore channels owned by Mission, Marshall and White Night Broadcasting until April 13, 2020.

“Dish is committed to ensuring that our customers have access to critical local news coverage regarding COVID-19 in their community,” said Andy LeCuyer, Dish senior vice president of programming, in a statement. “Our customers always come first, and restoring these channels is one more step we’ve taken to help them get through this challenging time.”

The article was updated to show that Fox News is now part of the free offering.

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