DIRECTV Launches Sports Blackout Workaround

Sports fans long frustrated by programming blackouts now have an alternative in the form of DIRECTV's new GameSeach feature, launched Wednesday.

According to the satcaster, the service works by automatically looking for game broadcasts on other channels when the users tunes into a channel with a blacked-out game. If an alternative is found, the user will get an on-screen message informing them of the option; likewise for those situations when another broadcast is not available. If they had set their DVR to record the blacked-out game, GameSearch will still look for the alternative and record it automatically.

DIRECTV's GameSearch feature is available now and is free of charge to subscribers. In terms of hardware, it works with the provider's HR20 and HR21 HD DVRs, as well as its R22 SD DVR. DIRECTV said the service will be rolled out to the R15, R16, H20 and H21 set-tops later this year.