The Plex app is getting a big update to v4.6 today, and with it comes yet another step in the app's material makeover. This update goes more than skin deep, though. There are improvements to functionality for Android TV, Chromecast, and the general app.
Here's the full changelog for Plex v4.6. It's a big one.
- Redesign preplay screens following Material Design guidelines.
- [Android TV] Add the ability to filter and sort items within a library section
- Update quality selection to allow selection of "Original" quality, as well as only showing valid qualities during video playback.
- Detect and warn about buffer underflows during video playback.
- Improve playback of MP4s when using the Experimental Player.
- Add the ability to select a specific version of a video, if multiple different quality versions are available.
- Add support for multi-part video playback.
- [Chromecast] Add ability to change quality and audio/subtitle during playback.
- [Android TV] Enable support for searching channels.
- Remove 'Share on Facebook' action from Watch Later, Recommend and Channel items, since it's no longer supported by our server.
- Fix for a crash sometimes happening when resuming a movie preplay screen.
- Resolve issue which prevented the Chromecast from using a secure connection to a server.
- Make sure playback options are not shown for synced content that doesn't support them.
- Make sure selected library filters are not lost when the app gets restarted.
- Make sure that there is only one instance of the app when it's launched from Google Now.
- Improve layout for generic error dialogs.
- Don't show an error dialog when navigating to an empty channel directory.
- Fix bug where the app showed the wrong episode count for synced TV show seasons.
- [Chromecast] Resolve issue where unavailable devices would still be listed.
- Fix crash when mirroring synced content from a Plex Companion controller app.
- [TV layout] Fix bug where content from locally discovered servers appeared in the "Social" tab of the home screen.
- [Android TV] Make sure the app doesn't request more "Recommended" and "Watch later" items than it actually needs.
- [Android TV] Resolve issue where local quality settings were used, when playing back media from a remote server.
- [Android TV] Fix issue where remote requests to play music would be ignored if music was already playing.
- [Android TV] Provide better navigation on channel preferences dialog.
- [Android TV] Fix issue loading images for search results in some situations.
The nature of Plex means the app has a lot of buttons, which can make it look a bit cluttered. The last few updates have improved matters, but I still feel like they get in the way in this version. It's a nice visual improvement overall, though. I know the addition of multi-part video support will make a lot of people happy as well. For the handful of Android TV users out there, the addition of sorting is a big deal too.
The update should be live in the Play Store for everyone right now. The Amazon version will be updated soon too.