Dish unveils 4K Joey, new remotes, redesigned interface, and multi-room audio

Along with its new Sling TV Internet TV service, Dish rolled out some other new products and services.

David Carnoy Executive Editor / Reviews
Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.
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David Carnoy
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Dish's new 4K Joey with one of two new remotes that will be available this spring. David Carnoy/CNET

LAS VEGAS -- Here at CES, the big story for Dish is the rolling out of its $20-a-month over-the-top Sling TV Internet TV service. But the company also had a number of smaller announcements to pick through.

Later this year -- apparently sometime this spring -- we'll see a new 4K set-top box, the Joey 4K, that's capable of delivering 4K content from Dish. It looks sleeker than your standard Joey, which now also comes in a wireless version.

We'll also see new remotes from the company. Dish's industrial designers have created a more modern remote, the Hopper Voice remote, that features a touchscreen, a built-in microphone for voice commands, and fewer buttons, which allegedly simplifies everything. I liked the look of the wood model I saw but not everybody is fond of touchscreens on their remotes. It's unclear how much it'll cost for existing Dish customers to upgrade, but shouldn't be too expensive ($50 to $70).

A second remote that's designed to be paired with Joeys will also be available. That remote doesn't have a touchscreen and will be cheaper to purchase.

A second remote without a touchscreen will also make its debut later this year. David Carnoy/CNET

Multi-room audio

Dish is also upgrading its apps and one of the new features that's being added will be multi-room audio (again, look for it to arrive this spring), with your existing boxes (Hoppers, Joeys) acting as zones. You'll have a few free music services to choose from, including iHeart Radio, Pandora, TuneIn and Deezer.

Dish's new multiroom audio app (for Android and iOS). David Carnoy/CNET

Dish is also adding Vevo, a video-streaming service, and Lyve, a personal photo and video storage service (you'll be able to use Dish's integrated Lyve app to display your photos and video on your TV) to its bag of Hopper features.

And lastly, flatter and simpler user interfaces are in fashion these days, and Dish will have its own new, fresh interface later this year which features a flatter, simpler design (see image below).

For a closer look at all the Dish new technologies announced at CES, go to http://www.dish.com/technology/ces/.

Dish has simplified its user interface and given it a flatter design. David Carnoy/CNET