Dish Network to offer sports betting through DraftKings partnership

A version of the DraftKings app integrated with Dish Network’s Hopper set-top boxes. (Image courtesy Dish Network, Graphic by The Desk)

Dish Network is now allowing its satellite TV customers to bet on live sports thanks to a strategic partnership reached with DraftKings, the companies announced on Wednesday.

The partnership will result in the creation of a DraftKings application that will be integrated into Dish Network’s Hopper set-top boxes, which will allow customers to view betting odds and initiate bets straight from their TV sets, a Dish Network spokesperson told The Desk on Wednesday.

“The unique partnership between DraftKings and Dish creates an all-in-one entertainment hub for all your sports needs,” a Dish Network executive wrote in a blog post. “Dish TV customers now have the ability to initiate bets and browse contests for NCAA basketball, NBA and NHL [events].”

Dish Network customers who want to take advantage of the new feature must have an internet-connected Hopper set-top box, which Dish Network offers with most of its current TV packages. The DraftKings service is available through the apps menu, or customers can say “Launch DraftKings” to enter the betting app.

The integration will eventually be offered to customers of Dish Network’s streaming TV service Sling TV and future services offered by the company’s wireless subsidiary Boost Mobile, the spokesperson said.

“Our deal with Dish TV  and the technology behind it immerses customers within a next-generation viewership experience and reaches these fan bases in a completely new way,” Paul Liberman, the president and co-founder of DraftKings, said in a press release. “This is a unique opportunity for fans to watch games and engage with our real-money products while the technology also allows for further innovation ahead.”

The DraftKings feature is not yet available to customers in West Virginia, Michigan, Tennessee and Pennsylvania because Dish Network has not secured permission to offer sports betting in those states.

Dish Network’s tie up with DraftKings comes as other pay TV companies explore ways to offer sports betting through their platforms.

Last year, streaming TV service Fubo TV said it would eventually offer its own sports betting platform through its sports-centric service. On Tuesday, the company revealed it lost over $500 million, mostly through a strategy of acquiring technology platforms and other companies with a focus on digital sports betting. Fubo TV executives said their forthcoming betting platform should help it turn a profit by the end of the year.

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