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Dish Cuts Deal with Netflix to Bring Service to Set-Tops

Dish Network is the first major U.S. pay-TV provider to integrate Netflix into its set-top box — giving the No. 2 satcaster’s customers direct access to the streaming video provider’s service.

Netflix will be available on Dish’s second-generation Hopper digital video recorder, rolling out to Dish subscribers over the course of Wednesday, the company said.

Netflix has been eagerly seeking to reach such deals with big U.S. operators, and has now secured its first significant Stateside win with Dish, which has about 14 million subscribers. Previously, Netflix has landed pacts to be added to set-top boxes with small and midsize cable operators, including Suddenlink Communications; in the U.K., Netflix has an agreement with the country’s top cable operator, Virgin Media.

“Pairing Netflix with Hopper represents the consolidation of two incredible video experiences,” Vivek Khemka, Dish senior VP of product management, said in announcing the deal. “It gives our customers easy access to their favorite shows and movies, on both Dish and Netflix, without ever having to leave their Hopper.”

Bill Holmes, Netflix’s global head of business development, noted that many households subscribe to both Netflix and a traditional pay-TV service.

“As the first major pay-TV provider in the U.S. to add the Netflix app to its set-top box, Dish strengthens an already robust video entertainment experience for its customers,” Holmes said in a statement. “Our vast library of TV shows and movies, combined with Dish’s lineup of live television content, gives customers easy access to a wide variety of complementary programming.”

Dish customers with the Hopper DVR can access the Netflix app by clicking the blue button on their remote and selecting the Netflix icon, or from the Netflix icon on the Hopper main menu. Dish subs who don’t have Netflix can create an account in the app or sign up via http://www.netflix.com/dish.

In the coming months, Dish said it expects the app to roll out to additional devices, including Joey, Super Joey and Wireless Joey clients. Additionally, in the future, titles available on Netflix may be integrated into Dish’s search function on both the Hopper as well as Dish’s forthcoming over-the-top pay-TV service.

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