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Anonymous User
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Update Now TV app for apple TV

Will the Now TV app for Apple TV ever get an update?


The current version is complete rubbish and makes me regret ever getting a Now TV pass.


Unless there is an update my Now TV experience will be very short indeed.

2,755 REPLIES 2,755
Anonymous User
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Having recently got Apple TV I can not believe how awful the app is and that these issues have still not been resolved from these posts.

Suggested improvements would be that you update the app to provide the same services as on other platforms. Having gone from using the app on a windows laptop I'm astonished at how poor the app for Apple TV and that it has not been resolved for this long.

There are features missing that are an integral part of using the service. This being that there is:

1) No 'My Tv'
2) No 'Watchlist'
3) No 'Continue Watching'
4) No 'watch next'

Not having these makes the whole process of using now tv tedious.

Having spoken to customer services I was told these issues would be resolved with an app update 'very soon'. No answer could be provided as to when this would be other than 'within a year' and was told there was no one I could speak to who would provide a more accurate timescale.

It is awful that you charge the same for a service that differs so much based on the users platform. It does not appear any action is being taken to resolve these shortfalls or reassure Apple TV customers of a resolution that would prevention losing customers.

Is there anyone out there that can tell me when this will be resolved?
Anonymous User
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I'd like to see the Apple TV4 native app offer something more in line with the current iOS offerings (which should not take too long to port to tvOs) e.g.


GUI facelift to match iOS apps


Auto Play Next Episode

Currently Watching

Latest Releases listed on ATV home page


Longer term, an update to the codec quality and Siri search integration would be nice, but an experience akin to Netflix who provide a consistent experience accross ALL devices.  As it is, I'm about ready to jump ship elsewhere due to the limitiations and inconvenience of the current app.


A guarantee that improvements to the AppleTV4 app are being worked upon within a reasonable timeframe would keep me interested and would give me confidence in recommending the platform to others.

Anonymous User
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I would echo some of the comments already posted.


Compared to other versions of the app (iOS, PS4) this needs some improvements and quickly. The missing My TV option is crazy. If I start watching a series I have to search for it every time I want to watch the next episode (the screen blacks out at the end of an episode so I need to back out to refresh the listing). What is the point of my adding programmes to My TV if I can't see them on the Apple TV?


It should also have better sections for "most popular". There is a disconnect between what I see on the iOS App in the featured section compared to the Apple TV app. how about recommendations based on what I have watched?


Under the live TV section is there a reason you cannot add the freeview channels? i.e. BBC, Channel 4 etc? This would make the app my go to choice.


I would use the PS4 app as this has better functions but the streaming quality there is awful. Most of the time it is too pixelated to be watchable!

Anonymous User
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Subscription cancelled. Feel much better for that. If they cannot be arsed to fix the app for AppleTV users then they can swivel.

Anonymous User
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Aside from getting the current content and features to run smoothly, there are some pretty basic functions that means NowTV lags behind competitors by a mile.


For TV Shows/Entertainment package:

1) Before 'Featured' and 'Popular' menus, more important would be a 'Continue Watching' menu. Because you rotate the order of shows in the menus so it takes far too long to find and continue series that I have already started watching. Particularly annoying when there are bugs in the search function that often prevents me from using dictation (it conducts the search but won't let me scroll through or select the results).

2) Similarly, it is essential that the app keep track of where I have reached in the series. At the moment it always returns me to Season 1 Episode 1 and I have to either memorise the episode number I'm about to watch, or read through a lot of episode descriptions, which can often be too vague to quickly find my place.

3) Not essential, but personally would like it if it automatically played the next episode. Personally a big fan of this on Netflix, but maybe others disagree.

4) A selection of recomendations based on previous viewing history, or one for 'people who watched X also enjoyed...' is pretty basic and all competitors manage to include this.


For Movies package:

1) Again, a 'continue watching' would be great for times when you don't have time to finish the film.

2) Again, recommendations based on previous films I've watched would be great.


The above is essential just to try and keep up with the competition, not to mention basic bug fixes to stop the app from crashing the whole AppleTV, the problem of programmes going to black screen at the end of episodes rather than the episode list, the faulty search function and some shows experiencing 'Permission Denied' on the Apple TV but not other apps.


Beyond this, as others have pointed out, the new AppleTV includes some good features including Siri intigration and the TV app that NowTV should really be taking advantage of. With the bugs and lack of updates its easy to get the impression that NowTV doesn't listen to or care about its customers.


One other feature I personally would love is a traditional TV Guide like I would get with Freeview or on a Sky box rather than just getting what's live and the next two programmes/films on a channel, one channel at a time. The list format on a standard Sky box works well, and its disappointing not to have it here with the caveat of, I would only want it to show channels that my packages include (ie. I am subscribed to Film and Entertainment, so wouldn't want my TV Guide showing me Sports which I'm not interested in. The biggest thing that sets NowTV apart from the competition is the live tv streaming and this would go a long way to improving the usability of the feature. I don't have my TV hooked up to an aerial and at the moment Netflix is my main content source, but if the live tv feature on NowTV was more user friendly this would be a massive advantage.

Anonymous User
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The features you're asking for are all in every Now TV app, except on the Apple TV. I just use Now TV on the PS4, as it gets regular updates and feels a world away from the 1980s MS-DOS style Apple TV app. 


There are still issues of course even on the PS4, chiefly the terrible picture and sound quality. With Netflix and Amazon both on 4K HDR video with 5.1 surround sound, Now TV's massively over compressed 720p with stereo sound is rather insulting. 


I honestly don't believe Now TV will ever be taken seriously by Sky until they see satellite subscriber numbers dwindle. Until then it's simply a sideline. 

Anonymous User
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The difficulty for Sky in updating the AppleTV is that of commerciality. I believe Sky's thinking is this… If we update the AppleTV with all these features, it gives Apple more domination in another media industry, encroaching directly in their domain (the living room) something I truly believe Sky is afraid of. However, there's another point of view Sky should consider…


Apple is truly great at integration: Integrating hardware & software and integrating services that make a difference to people. The latest TVOS update realeased in the USA shows what is to come in the UK. Not only universal siri integration but the TV app which monitors what you watch from numerous sources, making cross-provider recommendations… "enjoy Taboo on BBC iPlayer? Why not try Boardwalk on Netflix". Interestingly, this cross functionality unifies many different sources of entertainment into an easy to digest experience and best of all it keeps track of where you're up to in these programs. It even integrates live programming from those sources and no doubt will soon notify you on your iOS device to tune in right before your program starts.


So, what happens if NowTV doesn't update? They get left behind. Other services will update to use these unique features, customer's will buy more AppleTVs and the terrible user experience of their app puts off customers from subscribing to their programming.


I can tell you it's definitely not how difficult it is to develop for AppleTV or how expensive it is... a 12 year old could create an incredible app for AppleTV (and many do). Coding for Apple devices is easy and provided you have a Mac, it's free too. Apple even halved the cost of the fees for video subscription services sold through an AppleID which is now incredibly competetive considering Apple is doing all the distribution, so we know it's nothing to do with the costs involved in offering the service.


Sky is being short-sighted and only time will show them how their reluctance to use the latest software technology in tvOS will cost them dearly. Wait until there are dozens of providers with incredible TV content who support the unique advanced features of tvOS… NowTV will fade into obsolescence.

Anonymous User
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Apple are doing some interesting things with the Apple TV in the states (except for the inexcusable lack of Amazon Prime of course). Elsewhere though, things are incredibly different. Looking at the situation in the UK (it's much the same elsewhere) there is a near total lack of local content, and little to no interest from the few local providers which bothered to show up at all.


What do we have in the UK? A really poor bare bones version of iPlayer and... that's pretty much it. No Amazon Prime, no ITV, Channel 4, or Channel 5. It's a wasteland. Buy pretty much any smart TV and you'll get all of those services. They're the bedrock of any streaming platform. Fail to have Netflix, Amazon, and the UK catchup services and it's game over, you've lost.


Some of the blame for the failure of the Apple TV lies with Sky. Had Now TV been a real showcase for the platform then it would have been a strong point for the Apple TV. As it stands the best app on the Apple TV is Netflix, and even that is behind Netflix on other platforms. 


It's a shame, but the Apple TV is dead. It's over, at least outside of America.  Now TV played their part in its demise for sure, and you can bet your house that Sky will never, ever update it.  I now suffer through Now TV on the PS4. The picture and audio quality is utter garbage of course, but at the least the app just about manages to be mediocre.

Anonymous User
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Interesting point of view @Anonymous User and thank you @Anonymous User


@Anonymous User The content for AppleTV sadly isn't controlled by Apple. If the rumor mill is anything to go by, Apple has been trying to get quality content into their ecosystem for years. No doubt providers like Sky, ITV, Channel 4, etc don't want to hand control over to Apple. Naturally, Apple saw a way of making the living room experience better, so one of the few routes they had control over was open the platform up to developers (and more importantly content providers) and let them choose. It's really their choice to include their content on the platform. Apple can't make them share their content.


The BBC have an obligation to provide their content on the widest selection of platforms as possible since if you watch live TV, you're legally required to pay a license fee. Netflix has no interest in living room technology, they have always invested their efforts into great programming and getting their content to the widest audience possible, however other providers including Amazon Prime, ITV, Channel 4, etc don't have the same obligations or foresight. Amazon have made a clear statement that they are totally anti-AppleTV since they refuse to even stock it (they once did). Naturally, they have their own technology that's in direct competition with Apple's set top box... They've even included the same voice recognition into their latest offering using Alexa.


In some ways we should count ourselves lucky that Sky have even allowed their content on the AppleTV as others refuse to. It's just a shame they're not prepared to see past their control of living room technology and do what they do best... offer excellent programming. I'm quite happy to invest in Apple... they know technology and they know user interfaces like no-one else. I genuinely believe that the AppleTV is and will evolve to be the best, most intuitive living room experience, it's disappointing that content providers like Sky and Amazon think they know the user experience better through their own technology and therefore exclude features or content from AppleTV.


By the way @Anonymous User in case you weren't aware, it is actually possible to view all free to air programmes live on AppleTV and pay a small fee (£5.99 a month I believe) to have premium live channels and some catch up TV because a thoughtful developer created software for the AppleTV called 'TV Player'. It's definitely worth a look and is completely above board.

Anonymous User
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well put @Anonymous User


You hit the nail on ther head with one word, integration, the one thing Sky doesn't want. Sky doesn't want integrated services across hardware or content providers. They want us to subscibe to their phone/interent/tv plans, use their hardware and purchase from their 'Sky Store'. The people higher up at Sky clearly think Apple TV (and cord cutting) is a threat to these and don;t want to play ball.


Sky could have won the cord cutting battle and have been the cornerstone of streaming content for decades by embracing the platfrom and developing a good app, instead of trying to destory it. I just don't think they're innovative enough or understand the way the market is changing (highlighted by the recent changes to NowTV - TV tuner box, tradional 12 month internet & TV packages etc). The 20 somethings of today aren't getting Sky dishes, and won't be when they're 40 somethings either, if Sky don't embrace new platorms they'll simply get left behind by companies who do.