Eager to get a slice of the growing cord-cutter pie, AT&T and DirecTV announced their own web-based premium TV service earlier this week. DIRECTV NOW officially launches today, so it's good to see that the service gets Android support immediately. The app is free and works with phones and tablets running Android 4.4 or higher. Sadly it's not compatible with Android TV, though Chromecast streaming is available on all videos. Read More
AT&T announced a major development following its merger with DIRECTV, adding to what is quickly becoming a byzantine mixture of offerings for those who want a cable channel package. The latest service, called DIRECTV NOW, can best be described as a streaming version of DIRECTV's satellite channel lineups. In other words, DIRECTV NOW is a bit like a beefed-up Sling TV. Read More
Did you know that there's nothing free on Hulu anymore? I didn't, until I tried to track down the latest episodes of awful-yet-addictive CW superhero shows that I pour into my eyes like the pop cultural equivalent of fast food. Yes, it turns out the networks that comprise Hulu's adulterous corporate parents have walled off all those TV episodes behind a paywall. But fear not, cable-cutting penny-pinchers: at least some of those shows have a new home on Yahoo View. According to Yahoo, the app is available only in the US. Read More
Most of our readership is more likely to sit down and watch the latest episode of Game of Thrones instead of whatever season Spongebob they're up to these days, but we are aware that some of you have children. (There are even a few running around the disparate home offices of Android Police, if you can believe it.) And those tiny customers are the ones served by the latest major media player to hit Android TV, Nickelodeon. Read More
A list of things that you’d like to watch in the future isn’t exactly breaking new ground for streaming video services – hell, Netflix was doing that back when they were just a mail-order DVD rental company. But the software engineers at Hulu think they’ve significantly improved on the idea with the new Watch List (capital W), which is apparently cool enough to warrant both an intro video and a press release. Read More
The writing isn't quite on the wall for traditional cable and satellite television - not so long as companies like Comcast can manipulate the market with artificial monopolies and data caps, anyway - but things are definitely looking up for cord-cutters. The latest fruit of the union between American telecom AT&T and satellite TV giant DirecTV is a series of TV packages that don't require, well, TV packages. These data-only streaming options will become available some time in the fourth quarter of 2016, according to an AT&T press release.
Said packages will come in three flavors. First, DirecTV Now, an all-digital streaming TV service that will offer "much of what is available from DirecTV today," including on-demand programming and premium networks. Read More
The adoption of Chromecast as a de facto streaming standard was rapid, helped in no small part by the fact that it was the cheapest streaming gadget on the market which was immediately compatible with both major mobile phone systems. But not everyone leaps to support new tech, and old media giants like the National Broadcasting Company have never been accused of being nimble. So it took NBC the better part of three years to support Google's streaming standard, so what - it's not like they're a multi-million dollar entertainment company backed by an international supercorp.
Oh wait, they are.
The Chromecast support in NBC's official network app doesn't come with any other notable changes, though video streaming appears to work with all of the live and pre-recorded video within. Read More
If you pay for cable, you probably pay for ESPN. Disney's sports empire is practically inescapable, especially if you watch college sports, and it's essentially impossible to pay for conventional television without getting ESPN thrown into the package, whether you want it or not. So if you're paying for it, you might as well get it on your phone too, right? ESPN's live streaming service WatchESPN is now available within the primary ESPN app itself. Previously WatchESPN was a separate Android app. Read More
If you don't know what PlayStation Vue is, don't worry, you're not alone. It's not a gaming service of any kind, it's an IPTV subscription that delivers select shows and networks to the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. It's a sort of hardware-exclusive take on SlingTV. Or at least it was, until Sony announced that the service was expanding to other streaming devices. Amazon's Fire TV and Fire TV Stick will be the first non-Sony hardware compatible with PlayStation Vue, not counting iPhone and iPad.
Apparently there are still no plans for core Android app, but the service will expand to the Chromecast (and presumably Android TV by way of its built-in Cast support) at some point in the future. Read More
While Android TV doesn't enjoy the wide support that Chromecast gets, and its current app catalog can't hold a candle to competitors that have been in the market for much longer like Roku, it's slowly and surely getting better. The latest major network to offer an official Android TV app is PBS, the United States' government-funded Public Broadcasting Service. The free app is available to download on Android TV units now.
PBS Video uses the same Google Play Store listing as the phone and tablet version of the app, it's just been expanded to Android TV with additional API support. The app allows users free access to streaming some, but not all, of the channel's currently-running shows, plus segmented versions of NewsHour and Austin City Limits and at least some shows from local markets. Read More