The issue at the heart of this, is the change in Sling culture. The Company has made much of the 'no monthly charges or fees' in its promotions and advertising.
The implied viewing Slingbox experience is that it is free viewing and not inferred with - it is 'free of fees or charges'.
I see advertising as a 'fee' - while it is not cash it is not free viewing as supplied by the broadcaster.
On Sling's own web site it says: "Make the most of what you already pay for, with absolutely no monthly fees."
Well, I have been an ad agency staffer and where I come from advertising is a fee. While it is not cash-from-clients (viewers) it is exposure at our/your expense and is the equivalent of a monthly fee or charge. Only Slingbox advertising is happening daily.
So while Sling claims absolutely no monthly fees they are in fact charging us every time we see the adverts and in so doing have completely undermined the integrity of their own promotional pitch and the viewing experience.
It is a break with their stated and claimed relationship with purchasers of their products and if it is to continue they must modify their claim of no monthly charges.
Advertising on Slingbox does not allow owners to, "Make the most of what you already pay for, with absolutely no monthly fees."
There is a fee. It's called advertising.
While I agree it's completely wrong to force users to watch an ad before viewing their stream (although I've never experienced this for some reason) I think your attempt to equate this to paying a fee is over-analytical nonsense.
There claim of no monthly fees is correct however much you (and I) dislike their ads.
We'll have to agree to disagree Oliver.
But numerous other owners have already made the point that they see ads as a cost.
There argument is you either get the Slingbox for free and see ads (the Pandora/Spotify model)
You pay for the Slingbox and view it ad free.
But you don't do both - buy it AND see ads. Because it's seen rightly so as an additional cost over and above the purchase price.
The point being made is that the Slingbox experience is based on a culture that Sling proudly presents as free and unmolested from the provider.
Advertising is an intrusion particularly as no mention is made of it prior to purchase. YMMV.
Sling in my view has to now modify their position to advise buyers before purchase that advertising will be seen.
I agree it's out of order, and you are right in that it should tell you on the box that you'll have to sit through an ad before being able to watch your stream. I can't imagine something more frustrating than that when you tune in late to watch a live match or something.
I'm wondering who is getting these ads though - because I've never seen one. Perhaps it depends on your location, or even the TV provider you entered when setting up the Slingbox or something? Maybe they're experimenting with a limited number of people to see what reaction it gets?
If they're going to do this, then they should produce a cheaper box, i.e. a choice of an ad-free or ad-supported one. But as you say, to suddenly introduce this without any warning is going to turn a lot of people off.
Do not buy a Sling box. I purchased mine and thought it was great. It was everything they advertised. Now they have forced you to watch there advertising. It is ridiculous that you buy the product and then they add on something that was not part of the original agreement. It is not like they are evening providing me original content. All they are doing is letting me access my home TV. If they were actually providing a service that I should be paying for like original content then i would see it. I bought the product that was not forcing me other commercials they should not change that. So if you are looking to buy a Sling Box, DO NOT! It is not worth paying money to have them force you to watch there commercials to watch more commercials from your own TV. DO NOT SUPPORT THIS COMPANY!!!!