ATT Android TV

AT&T is Building an Android TV Streaming Player


This week AT&T filed with the FCC for a new Android TV-powered streaming player. This new player has the model number C71KW-400 and is described as “the new AT&T/DirecTV Wireless 4K OTT Client.”

The FCC filing was first spotted by Variety but details are still thin. The few pages of the manual we have seen describe OTT (the term many industry insiders use for streaming) as “the delivery of video via the internet directly into user-connected devices, allowing access to services anywhere, anytime, on any device.”

What exactly this device will be used for is unknown at this time. The device does talk about DIRECTV but the documents Variety found says nothing about DIRECTV NOW. The device seems to only work with stream and according to the paperwork, the new Android TV player won’t work with DIRECTV’s existing Genie hardware. The new device will have Ethernet, digital audio, HDMI and USB ports but no built-in antenna port. (AT&T may be planning on a USB powered antenna tuner.)

The device will come with a new voice remote with an integrated touchpad.

So what AT&T has planned for this device is unknown. Just because DIRECTV NOW is not mentioned in the FCC filing could mean that this will be for traditional DIRECTV customers. Yet AT&T has recently said that they plan to put DIRECTV NOW and DIRECTV customers on the same app with their new beta app that is currently in testing. This will mean your DIRECTV and DIRECTV NOW login will work on one app. That makes it likely that this device will work for both DIRECTV NOW and DIRECTV customers.

The timing of this filing suggests a 2018 CES release in January. (Assuming everything goes well through the filing and testing.)

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  • Hmm… If it is a new DIRECTV box, once it’s released, I’ll try to swap out my parents’ boxes for it to see if there’s anything new.

    • Craig

      Anything new? I doubt this is gonna be or has anything to with being a new satellite receiver box, bud. This is probably gonna be another Android TV box that streams DirecTV NOW via AT&T’s terrestrial 4G cellphone-network. Or even more simply? Just an Android TV box with the DirecTV NOW app and nothing else new.

      • Keith Foster

        I might be okay with this as something that I can take along with me on trips. While I can get my First Stick to work 99% of the time I have to deal with slow WiFi.

  • Scott Shell

    This seems strange to me since there isn’t even a DIRECTV NOW app for Android TV. I would like that and honestly if they do go the direction that they are proposing I might be more likely to be able to convince my wife to transition from DTV SAT over to DTV NOW.

    So far that hasn’t been working so well as she doesn’t like change and doesn’t enjoy alternative interface interactions.

    • Craig

      Technically there is an Android TV app for DirecTV NOW. It just hasn’t been tweaked to work very well with other Android TV devices or released to them. It was part of the Le-Eco Android TV exclusivity agreement which has now ended, due to Le-Eco’s financial issues.

      • Scott Shell

        I understand the differences between a Fire TV app and an Android TV app a mere stones throw from one another but without an official app it just seems like this is an odd move on their part.

    • Loren Kruse

      They could easily move the code from their DIRECTV NOW app for Fire TV and tweak it a little for their Android TV box. I am sure they are wanting a monthly rental fee for the box.

      • Scott Shell

        Isn’t that sort of counter to the whole premise of streaming services? Not that I don’t think it is possible just that it’s counter to the premise.

        • Loren Kruse

          It has been previously stated that AT&T predicts streaming will be its primary platform within 3 – 5 years. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-09-22/at-t-said-to-plan-web-streaming-as-primary-tv-platform-by-2020

          • Scott Shell

            I’m fine with that as long as the interfaces are easier to navigate then they are today. Such has having actual channels that can be mapped and turning on the TV and just watching without jumping through hoops like I need to do today.

          • JD Campbell

            I do like how they alphabetize their guide; but yes, if they would allow you to program your own #’s for each channel that would be sweet!

      • OneOfOne

        why would they care? its a loss leader to get more subs. use your brain

  • Straight Gafflin’

    Looks like AT&T has figured it out. They’re making the move to dominate the market with an OTT one-stop-shop version…and they have the money to do it…

  • Fred Koot

    And the Monthly fee will be?

  • Malignar

    Don’t most people still have caps on cell data usage? Maybe I don’t understand what this is being used for? if you can’t find wifi and travel quite a bit?

    • Keith Foster

      Unless you have AT&T than it will be zero rated for data.

    • OneOfOne

      duh. do you not have broadband?

    • sean8102

      This is meant to connect over wi-fi to your home internet connection and wireless router (same as a Roku or Apple TV). Not cellular data connections.

  • mnsportsgeek

    Take my money. It’ll be nice to have a remote with numbers again. I’m sick of taking 20 seconds to switch channels.

    • Andrew Lindeman

      Here here! Agreed!

    • Dan

      Wouldn’t it be nice if they just added page up/down buttons? At least for Roku they could use the volume rocker for it, or fast-forward / rewind buttons when in the Guide screen. I’ve given this a lot of thought.

      • OneOfOne

        fuck roku. what does that have to do with anything?

        • Dan

          What do you use? Does it let you scroll through a channel guide quicker?

  • CommodoreFan64

    I’ll pass Roku works well enough for my family.

    • Ja Cam

      Yes, especially now that their remotes control tv power & volume & have voice control to open apps & such.

  • Colton

    I hope I could move my U-verse to it. I love the service but the box and UI is clunky.

  • Kawshik Ahmed

    The ironic part is DirecTV Now still didn’t released their Android TV app but they are making an Android TV box/hub.

  • bobinc

    So is this going to be the start of new cable boxes? Where they will call it cord cutting but its just a cable package that streams over the net instead of air/satellite.

  • Eugene D Ratney

    This could possibly be used to interface with the genie 2 server.