DISH's Wireless Joey Provides TV Without Wires

Most consumers with satellite service plan out TV placement in their homes based on where they have the proper hookups, but it's not strictly necessary for DISH subscribers. Thanks to a new device known as the Wireless Joey, DISH users can connect TVs anywhere in their homes via Wi-Fi.

The Wireless Joey, so named for its ability to access DISH's Hopper box (a joey is a juvenile kangaroo), connects to an HDTV via HDMI and receives a TV signal over Wi-Fi. In effect, this means that users can watch TV anywhere in their houses, even in rooms that lack coaxial or Ethernet connections.

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The Joey itself is not new; DISH released a wired version in 2012. The device's functionality is pretty straightforward: DISH broadcasts live TV and DVR content to a central Hopper box in a user's home. Users connect a wired Joey via Ethernet or a Wireless Joey via Wi-Fi to access content from the Hopper remotely.

DISH suggests that the Wireless Joey will be of particular use for consumers who want to install TVs in rooms that lack coaxial or Ethernet ports. The company also cites the Wireless Joey's 802.11ac wireless technology, which it claims can deliver a stronger signal than similar boxes from competitors.

Not every DISH user will need a Wireless Joey; in particular, it does not offer much to users who have already made accommodations for TVs in every desired room, or who have Ethernet ports for the product's wired version. Furthermore, a Hopper has only three tuners, meaning that users who already have three TVs set up in their homes will have to install an additional Hopper before investing in Wireless Joeys.

Still, the box could be a good investment for a child's bedroom, or an impromptu backyard setup. The Wireless Joey is available now, and costs $50 for initial setup plus $7 per month for each box.

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Marshall Honorof

Marshall Honorof is a senior editor for Tom's Guide, overseeing the site's coverage of gaming hardware and software. He comes from a science writing background, having studied paleomammalogy, biological anthropology, and the history of science and technology. After hours, you can find him practicing taekwondo or doing deep dives on classic sci-fi. 

  • Gerry Allen
    DirecTv has had this capability for some time.
  • Darkk
    Much as I like TV I'll stick with OTA and Roku3. Cheaper that way.
  • thebigt42
    You PAY $50 per device AND $7 per month per device for the privilege of using it. DAMN And that is on top of a $50+ per month subscription charge Bend over and grab your ankles. I bet they don't even give you a kiss after.
  • SteelCity1981
    what they don't tell you is if the joey receives HD. I know their dual receiver setup doesn't, only the tv that has the receiver has the HD and the other tv that doesn't has to use a coax cable. Also I don't get why they are charging an extra 7 dollars a month per joey when all it is a hub with 2 tuners singles built in to the main unit. it's not like they are actual receivers. with the dual receiver they don't charge you for the 2nd tv that's hooked up to the coax cable.
  • ayrborne
    Joeys are HD capable. The $7/mo is an equipment rental fee (I believe). One Hopper will feed 4 locations with 3 tuners (but can use 1 of those tuners to watch/record the 4 major locals; totalling 6 channels on 1 DVR). Adding a wired Super Joey to the system will add 2 more tuners. Each location can access the DVR and chose to join another location's tuner to minimize recording conflicts. They even have an app for next gen consoles and TVs to create a Virtual Joey. Its even Bluetooth capable, so you can use wireless headsets. They packed a lot into one reciever
  • ayrborne
    Thought I should mention some of the other features, as well. The Sling capability will create a bridge between the internet-connected Hopper and an internet-connected device (smartphone, laptop, tablet, etc), so you can watch your TV away from home. They have Pandora, Dish On Demand, and Blockbuster at Home in addition to many other apps. I like the "locate remote" function. The remote is 2-way UHF (no need for line of sight to the receiver), so if its lost down the cushions, just push the button on the receiver (works on Joeys, too) and it will start beeping and flashing. I wish all devices had this! Because its 2-way, you have an easy setup in the menu for programming it for other devices like TV, surround sound, and bluray. I'm not an expert on fees, but I believe the installation fees are for off-contract setups or new installs with less than desirable credit. Usually, they waive those kind of things to keep you on contract (like mobile phone companies offer you a free upgrade every 2 years). Package prices are set by the content providers. If they ask more from Dish, Dish will ask more from you