BLACK-ISH - ABC's new family comedy, "black-ish," takes a fun yet bold look at one man's determination to establish a sense of cultural identity for his family. The series stars Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross and special guest star Laurence Fishburne. (ABC/Adam Taylor) MARSAI MARTIN, MARCUS SCRIBNER, YARA SHAHIDI, ANTHONY ANDERSON, MILES BROWN, TRACEE ELLIS ROSS

AT&T Announces a New App, 4K, Cloud DVR & More Are Coming to DIRECTV NOW


BLACK-ISH - ABC's new family comedy, "black-ish," takes a fun yet bold look at one man's determination to establish a sense of cultural identity for his family. The series stars Anthony Anderson, Tracee Ellis Ross and special guest star Laurence Fishburne. (ABC/Adam Taylor) MARSAI MARTIN, MARCUS SCRIBNER, YARA SHAHIDI, ANTHONY ANDERSON, MILES BROWN, TRACEE ELLIS ROSSFor months now we have been hearing rumors that AT&T was busy working on a new DIRECTV NOW app and DVR. Well, now we know it is coming and will be there this fall.

Today AT&T announced that this fall they begin rolling out their next-generation platform to customers, starting with DIRECTV NOW and DIRECTV companion app users. The platform will eventually provide a consistent look and feel across AT&T consumer video services throughout the United States. This means DIRECTV NOW and DIRECTV customers will both get the same user interface.

“We all want easy and quick access to our content, regardless of where, when or on what device we watch it,” said David Christopher, chief marketing officer, AT&T Entertainment Group said in a statement sent to Cord Cutters News. “By developing for a single video platform, we’ll deliver new features and platform innovations in a faster, more efficient way. And it will be simple and consistent wherever you watch—TV, phone or tablet.”

AT&T announced that the Beta testing for their next-generation video platform begins this summer. AT&T will invite selected DIRECTV NOW customers to be a part of the beta program and among the first to experience cloud DVR and many of our other new features. AT&T also announced that additional features, including live TV pausing and parental controls, are slated for availability once the new platform exits beta testing later this year. Other features, such as user profiles, download and go, and 4K HDR are planned for 2018.

At this time AT&T has not said how the DIRECTV NOW customers will be picked for the beta. So keep an eye on your email address for a possible invite.

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  • Pebo Bryson

    lol cloud dvr

    • Joe Siegler

      Why is that funny?

      • Joseph Blow

        i’m guessing because he doesn’t think they can pull it off. but if you look at sling tv it took them a while to become stable too.

        • Ron C.

          I use Vue and the cloud dvr seems fine. Certainly better than not having a dvr capability. I’m looking forward to trying DTV Now once they get theirs going to compare with what I’m using now.

          • REP

            The rewind and fast forward better show thumbnails.

          • mnsportsgeek

            Yup, this is important.

  • Joseph Blow

    so looking forward to this. would love to be a beta tester. already talked to directv now support and don’t know the process to become a beta tester yet.

  • Sunny Rain

    FINALLY. we’re getting something coming up.

  • JGaLaXY

    Download and go? For BOTH platforms? Im curious about this….

  • JGaLaXY

    these fools better not pull a Vue on us lol

  • mnsportsgeek

    This is why I didn’t cancel. I hope they come through. A lot of exciting promises in their news release.

    Good timing to announce it right after Vue hikes up their prices for the majority of their customers.

    • GersonT1000

      I was just thinking about how it sucks to control these services with no cable remote. I wonder if it’s possible to make an app-specific remote that will connect to Roku and/or Fire TV by WiFi or Bluetooth. I’m sure they can at least make a remote app like Roku does.

      • FranchisePlayer

        Logitech Harmony. I have one and it will control Fire TV, OTA TV and Roku. However, the one big drawback is that for Roku control to work, you have to be on Wifi. FireTV allows you to add the Harmony remote as an extra BT device. The Harmony also allows you to control volume and set shortcuts within each device (e.g. link to Netflix, channel guide, etc)

        • GersonT1000

          Is it possible to do something like assign a button to open up the guide in DirecTV Now on Fire TV? Or assign a button to a channel on DirecTV Now?

          • FranchisePlayer

            I’m actually working on something like that now but have not been successful. There’s a way to program custom activities for each device, including things like “press the left button”. However, I’m finding some of the actions I’d like to perform like open the guide in DTVNOW are not ones I can directly perform, but possible by using an alternative set of steps that get the same result.

            For the Roku, you can program it to turn on your TV, switch the input to Roku, start Roku then start a specific channel (like DTVN). But once you get into a channel (Roku or FireTV), the options are somewhat limited. This is where I’m at now, trying to see what actions I can take while in one of the channels/apps.

            What I like now is that I can have the TV off, press one button and it turns on the TV then goes to Fire TV. Or, with one button, turn on the TV, start the Roku then go to DTVN. Then, while the Roku is on, I can press one button and it goes to the FireTV. I’d like it to auto-start an app on FireTV but I’ve not figured out how to do it. Being able to push one button to get to TV, FireTV or Roku without having to use a separate remote to change inputs has been nice. I can control each of my devices with one remote now as well as volume, mute, and other controls.

            There are other things the remote can do like control lights and other things but so far I like only needing one remote.

  • GersonT1000

    I’ve just been wanting DVR and now they announce that and all those extra features will be coming. If they get all these features, they will be THE best OTT TV service out there. Now, if they say that those with the $35/month Go Big price lock-in will have to pay extra for some of these features, that will suck. I would hope they at least allow DVR to be added on at no extra cost. The other features like 4K I can live without.

    • Clark Bowman

      Yeah. I have the $35 lock in. We’ll see. They owe us early adopters, DTVN was almost useless the first few months and they weren’t honest about how bad those issues were. But I stuck it out for that good price.

      • DAS

        That was what the free HBO for a year was for.

    • HiroRoshi

      Doesn’t seem likely ATT would include DVR for free until they have to. They’d at least likely first try with a charge. YouTubeTV needs to get on the ball, they could become a big threat to other OTT players as it matures.

    • Vegas Steve

      Good bet that any addons (like DVR) will be an upcharge from your $35.

    • JGaLaXY

      no way it will be free lol

  • GersonT1000

    Hey Luke, I love your site. Is it possible for you to include the source link information at the end of the article (or embedded in the article somehow) when you post these kind of stories. If you say that AT&T announced this, I would like to click and go to the full, original announcement. Keep up the good work!

  • Joe in Virginia

    I’ve always said it: if DTVN gets DVR and maintains prices, it will be the service to beat.

    • Bret Rice

      If they get CBS, add more than 2 streams..

  • Nathan John Ganiere

    I’d expect it to be more like winter than fall though, AT&T not always punctual on what they say and plan for deadlines………

    • Bret Rice

      Or next year about this time..lol

    • mnsportsgeek

      Honestly I don’t care when it comes. The fact that they actually put out an official press release is good enough for me.

  • REP

    About time. Direct TV Now streaming is not as instant as Slingtv. Slingtv streaming improve so much that switching channels are almost instant…that was the surprise for me. Not only that, the quality of the video was clear in the beginning, not blurry. Whatever AT&T bring out, that’s more important to me than anything else….so i hope the new app fix that.

  • Johnny Jones

    Based on the history of DirecTV NOW enhancements, this just means sometime (maybe) next year.

  • NCAviator

    AT&T are the masters of FUD. They know that other streaming services are adding more channels and features. They are still lagging. So the easiest way to get your customers to stay is to put out a press release that you are working on new features. No real time line (Fall), no pricing. Those with the special $35 pricing know they are going to mess with them/me. They will make us sign up for NEW services and this will break our deal. What amazes me is how they are screwing their Satellite customers. I hope they prove me wrong and bring these features early and at no new costs. They should honor their early customers. HBO is nice, but I didn’t want or need it. Never asked for it. If they really wanted to support their early customers. They would be a major part of their beta program.

    At least the streaming market is being competitive right now. Time for mergers and the FCC to come and mess it up.

    • Sunny Rain

      I prefer an announcement like this as opposed to radio-silence where we have no idea whethere they’re even working on it. Right now, it seems like they’ve already got all the basics and will start testing in the next few weeks.

    • Aaron McBroom

      This is the beauty about the Free Market. There are enough alternatives that if AT$T pulls what you describe (and I think they will), there will be a mass migration to the other services, and they will suffer, as they should for past shenanigans.

  • JGaLaXY

    What’s a comfortable price for DVR though? 7 dollars? How much would you pay?

    • Sunny Rain

      I don’t think they will charge anything extra. And I hope there are no storage limitations. I’m ok with a 28-day limitation like PS Vue as long as there’s no storage limit.

      • JGaLaXY

        so Vue’s DVR is free?

        • Aaron McBroom

          Yes, “unlimited” and included with all plans, (each episode saved has a 28-day limit as noted above).

          • JGaLaXY

            that’s definitely interesting and makes their price make more sense to me, sling charges $5 I think, so I have no idea what DTV Now would do

          • Robert Anthony Hartzell

            I’m hoping they’re competitive. Sling and Hulu’s DVR seemed to be worse than their predecessors. At least try to be better than what’s out there.

        • Sunny Rain

          yes, it is

    • DAS

      I would pay $5 without any issues if the DVR had the FF/REW capabilities of Vue, the ability to record all channels like Vue, the added time for sports like Vue, the ability to protect recordings like Sling, the ability to delete individual episodes from a recorded series, and at least 50 hours of recording (that’s what Comcast starts out at here) but would prefer Vue’s Unlimited space

    • Robert Anthony Hartzell

      It would be nice if a free version was available with minimal hours. Something like 25-50 hours. After that $5 more to double the amount.

      • JGaLaXY

        I agree, if they did a free 25 hours but I got THIRTY days to get rid of it, that would be incredible. I wouldn’t even complain at all. The on demand for DirectV now is pretty bad

  • Sam

    This sounds great!

  • Skip Rose

    what is a DVR?

    • Respected Citizen

      It’s a VCR that cable companies charge you $15 per month to use.