Hands on: EchoStar SlingLoaded HDS-600RS review

Freesat-toting mobile TV

The EchoStar SlingLoaded yaddayaddayadda is also known as the FreeSling

Freesat and EchoStar have teamed up on a set-top box that allows you to watch live TV and recorded programming on your mobile device as well as providing a traditional PVR service.

The box itself has been designed to stand out rather than blend in – EchoStar says it's not one to hide away under the TV.

The design won't be to everyone's taste though – it's quite masculine and the abundance of red glowing lights will clash with certain decors.

Hands on freesling review

Most of those glowing red lights are in fact touch-buttons for channel navigation, recording functions and volume control – the usuals.

On the left hand side of the front panel sits the LED display that lets you know what channel you're watching, and nestled next to that is the Sling light which lights up or not depending on how the box is being used; luckily you can switch this off.

Hands on freesling review

A quick word, too, on the remote; you can't see it very well in this particular picture (below), but it has been split into three distinct sections for easy use; the top panel is for controlling the PVR function – record, rewind, play etc – the middle band is for navigating around the EPG and the bottom section has the number pad and traditional remote functions.

Hands on freesling review

Another nifty inclusion is the +/- 30 seconds button, which allows you to skip exactly 30 seconds in either direction; great for those 'who's that guy? What's going on here? Why doesn't she turn around?' moments in which you miss the essential line that will prove important later on in the film because you're explaining simple plot points to inattentive fellow viewers.