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.
To be frank: all of us on the beta know they could roll it out. The reply you got is corporate 💩💩💩💩💩.
The app works as well as it’s going to ahead of regular patches, something any good app should get from a company who cares about their customers 🙄🙄🙄🙄.
Compare it to the current app: it’s night and day
As someone who has been involved in software engineering for 20 years, this “BETA” is a complete and utter joke,
The theories posted on this thread are a symptom of a complete lack of transparency and information coming from NOW TV.
Ultimately there is no technical reason the app has not been updated. It’s gone on for FAR too long.
My best guess is that NOW TV are trying to leverage their position with Apple to achieve better terms by promising features such as Apple TV full integration and showing them positive BETA user feedback.
This will be driven by a fear of cannibalising their lucrative SKY Q packages. Ultimately Sky want people to play in their sandbox, rather than pushing them over to Apple.
Ultimately the “ship it” decision is not a technical one, it’s going to be a commercial one. I feel all the BETA testers are being used as pawns.
My hope is I will be proved wrong as Apple TV gets a new update, but I severely doubt it.
I half agree with this, and half disagree.
This has become needlessly complex. After all, its just the release of an updated app for goodness sake.... and a release that brings the AppleTV functionally in line with all the other platforms they support.
Now... granted.. if they support full TV app integration, then you get pretty much all the convenience of a skyQ box i.e. "recording" - well.. not record but a watch queue automatically informing you that the next episode is ready (which is better than recording frankly) and some of what you say has merit.
However... most of us in the beta programme just can't understand why this is taking so long. They released the first beta back in March, and relatively soon after they released an update which sorted out the majority of issues.... however that's where we've been now since about May. No real significant changes to the beta.. and promises that the final release would support Boost and TV app integration.
It would be nice if someone could reach out and just let us know whats happening here. Im tempted to start to pester the trials manager again. I know NowTV staff read these forums so please.. someone... you know everyone here wants answers so can you just give us something to go on?
In terms of cannibalising lucrative SkyQ sales.. well you aren't wrong but you aren't right. Personally I ditched a very expensive SkyQ for NowTV and haven't looked back since. Of course ive been perfectly able to use it but I would like all my steaming on one device i.e the Apple TV so I am impatiently waiting for this release so I don't have to keep switching back and forth inputs on the TV just to get the NowTV service I am paying for (i.e. boost support). NowTV is deliberately kept a separate product and they still have clear differentiation between the two. For this reason I dont think you'll ever see 4K streaming on NowTV as that's SkyQ's USP.
I don't think there's anything clever, or sinister going on behind the scenes. NowTV have no reason to disable the AppleTV experience. Why on earth would they when other platforms are well served. The AppleTV is no different. If TV app integration scared them as you suggest then frankly they are not obliged to support it when they release the app so they could elect not to if that's the issue.
All we are talking about is the long awaited moment when the AppleTV gets functional parity with smart tvs, xbox, playstation, roku.. and all the others who are currently head and shoulders above the 5+ year old AppleTV app.
I just hope right now that the NowTV help twitter account is as poorly informed as it normally is and we shall see the release soon regardless.
There is no reason why they wont. How they can be having "technical issues" after 9 months in beta test... and 4 months after the last revised version was released is beyond me.
Thanks for the super articulated response. I have to say that a nice side-benefit of the LONG Beta is that the community that’s developed seems really nice with different views being stated but all in a well considered, well meaning way.
The platform disparity doesn’t make sense. Sony TVs running Android get the full app., whilst for ATV it’s MIA. There may be some sort of ‘skirmish’ between Sky and Apple that’s in play here, but perhaps tvOS14 has broken something. Who knows? I certainly won’t be buying an ATV box until the full app. is up for grabs with Boost support. With the full NowTV app. an ATV box would cover all my streaming requirements. In any case, it’s academic for me because once the final episode of The Undoing surfaces next week I’ll be cancelling my passes until something comes along that’s worth watching, probably next year now. The Sky schedules at present just seem to full of repeats. Luckily, Netflix and Amazon are my friends, along with my collection of BRs and DVDs.
Sky has often made what seem to be odd business decisions, but ultimately they need to recognise that streaming is the way forward for an ever increasing number of us. DTT and DSAT’s days are numbered, I think.
Not having the full NowTV app. on ATV kit makes no sense to many of us here, just as it makes no sense that you can install the Android app. on the new Humax Aura box, but not use it. Sky complacency, perhaps?
Ultimately, the full app. will end-up on ATV boxes, or it won’t. For now, it’s very much a case of looking elsewhere to get your NowTV jollies, especially if you need Boost.
Well I'm also still here a year later waiting for the updated NowTV app on ATV4K. Lucky for me I already had a NowTV Stick and a Chromecast Gen 3 (and Ultra). I have been using the NowTV Stick most of the time for NowTV content, but recently it started to play up so I changed to using the CC Gen 3. Lo and behold, the image quality of the same content was better through the CC Gen 3 compared to the Stick! Also lucky me, my Sony Bravia 55XF9005 recently got a native NowTV app and the PQ through that, seen as it fully supports Boost pass, is also very good.
All of this leads me to my question to you all, which device do you each think gives the best quality video and/or audio for NowTV with Boost pass at this point in time? Note that I like to feed my NowTV with Boost pass content to my 4K TV at 1080p so that the TV handles the upscaling.
Happy Black Friday all 🙂
This is starting to get daft(er) ..... What are they playing at?
As an aside - BT Sport Ultimate is already 4K on Apple TV, and from tomorrow will also include ATMOS.
And NowTV is still, outside of the BETA, 720P / 2.1. That's pretty amazing, comparison wise.
Oh, and there's a BT announcement that ATMOS will also be made available through NowTV ... (not sure how that's work though ....)
Just out of interest.
I did email the trials manager today and got a reply.
The app is still on track to be released in Autumn 2020 and therefore as we've noted before that gives them a window until 21st Dec - so another 4 weeks.
Reading between the lines, and I apologise to the trials manager if Im speaking out of turn, it does indeed look like the NowTV help twitter feed doesn't entirely give accurate information. I suspect that the 'end of the month' stuff was probably never correct. The technical difficulties stuff also probably isn't correct.
The trials team have checked back on those tweets and I provided them with the details of yesterdays one that caused the most concern... and they are feeding back to them (read slap on the wrist)
So.. relax I guess and things still seem on tract to deliver before Christmas.
@Anonymous User So I'm a total HD fascist, I hate watching anything in lower quality than I have to.
Our two main TVs are a 47" LG 2020 TV (I can't give you the exact model number, but it was bought right at the beginning of the year). It's LED, not OLED, as we watch quite a lot of news channels so OLED burn in wasn't an option for us. It's got a Sonos soundbar.
Our second TV, we have a dumb Toshiba 32" bought a few years back, and that has a Now TV Smart Box plugged into it, which we got for free when we signed up to Now Broadband in 2017.
The LG TV has an option of 'AI upscaling' which I thought would be a heap of rubbish, but genuinely, it makes our Now TV subscription (I refuse to pay for Boost under any circumstances) look absolutely amazing. It looks somewhere higher than 1080p but certainly not 4K. For reference, we stream a lot of 4K content from Amazon and Netflix, also iPlayer too, so I know what native 4K looks like.
If you plug in a device to play Now TV on the LG though, the AI upscaling absolutely struggles. It clearly needs to be native within the TV's apps to work properly. The same is on iPlayer, any other streaming service.
The Now Smart Box I think still delivers a really picture quality, really. I know it's on just a 32" Toshiba cheap TV but it really does look very very good to my eyes. Definitely looks 1080p. iPlayer and Now look no different on that TV through the same box.
I've always actually thought the ATV gives by far the best picture quality of all the streamers, personally. But maybe that's just my Apple fanboy leanings.
Sorry if this post has been totally off topic for everyone else!
FWIW, I agree with @pk6626 that there's clearly something going on between Now and Apple at this point. The app is done. It won't launch with TV integration and it may not launch with Boost. They're clearly having arguments over in-app purchasing commissions. Once Apple allowed Amazon to do it, it became practically a free-for-all for all other streamers to demand the same terms. I mean I could be totally wrong, but knowing how ruthless Sky is as a company (I mean it's now owned by Comcast, notoriously awful customer service in the US and totally hostile to all other companies) it wouldn't surprise me if they're just arguing with Apple over App Store cuts at this point. Seems like the kind of cynical thing they'd do.
If you follow that logic it also explains why Apple for some time now have never had Now as a featured app on the tvOS App Store main page. For absolutely ages it was, alongside iPlayer, All4 etc., they've totally buried it in the entertainment section the last couple of times I've looked. There's something going on between these two companies and we're just losing out in what is a stupid corporate argument, like when Amazon and Google fell out and YouTube just fell off all Fire and Echo devices. No-one wins in these arguments, it's just stupid greedy companies arguing between themselves and we all lose out a result.
What’s worse is if the app was good, and I note I don’t count the new trial app as good either, I’d probably be happy to be a regular ‘subscriber’ to NowTV. But their app, including the new one, doesn’t allow you to rate content and doesn’t suggest things you’d also like. So this makes it hard to find stuff to watch, and I have no doubt that there is plenty of good content I’ve missed when I’ve had a pass. Currently only have a kids pass, and the new kids section in the trial app is actually quite good for them. I note even continue watching has memory loss, as it only seems to remember viewed content for a short period of time, how user friendly.
On the cost note, I’ve never paid full price. Either using vouches from eBay and Amazon or worst case from Currys which was still cheaper than paying direct. I even had a collection of sticks and boxes at one stage! Or worst worst case a cancellation offer direct on the website. Let’s hope there are some offers around when I next dip in for some box sets!
I have 2 now tv accounts due to not be able to take up the Black Friday offer last year because I still had a valid pass . So today I went into my dormant account and the offer for me was Entertainment £4.99 a month for 6 months and Cinema £5.99 a month for six months.
I am only going to take up the cinema offer for over Xmas as I have Sky Signature in the Lounge and only used now tv in the bedroom, but lately have not been watching upstairs.
Had they had the yearly 12 months offer like last year I would have taken it but they have just lost £90 as I can do without. I can watch The Walking Dead downstairs.