Smiling family sitting holding remote control

Your First Look at DIRECTV NOW’s New App & DVR Running on The Apple TV


For the first time, we have photos of the new DIRECTV NOW app and DVR running on the Apple TV. Now you need the new Apple TV 11 according to our beta tester and this is running on a Apple TV 4th gen.

Here is what we learned:

Fast Forwarding Through Commercials

One of the main questions we received yesterday was can you fast forward through commercials. The good news is, yes, you can fast forward through commercials.

According to testers of the DIRECTV NOW beta the DVR will let you fast forward or go back in 15 second jumps. Here is what that looks like:

 

When can you get the new DVR?

Many readers asked if they could get the DVR now. Sadly the DVR is in beta testing by invite only. We do not know when AT&T will invite more users into the beta but according to AT&T, the DVR feature will roll out to all subscribers sometime this fall.

Here are some more screen shots of the new DIRECTV NOW app and DVR running on the Apple TV;

You can find screenshots of the iPhone version HERE.

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  • Scott

    This is the kind of information I come to this site for. Thanks! This is useful, insightful stuff.

  • risingtide

    – Will they still support the standard fastforward/rewind on Apple TV (by changing seekbar position) without the need to click on the FF/REW arrows?
    – Will the app still have that annoying thing where it changes the channel accidentally when you swipe? I really hope they fix that.
    – Can you record by series or just individual episodes?
    – Is the storage limit still 100 hours?

    I hate that they’re still in “pre-beta” which worries me that we won’t have it in the fall. It would have been nice to have before the new TV season starting next week.

    • Robert Anthony Hartzell

      It could still come out in Fall. Sling did beta in Nov ’16 and released their first wave in early March ’17, if I recall right. If DTVN does something similiar, we could see DVR by late Nov or early Dec this year. Nov would make sense since it will be their first year anniversary.

      • risingtide

        I needed it to be ready for the fall TV season. YouTube TV and PS Vue have the best experience for broadcast networks but I don’t want to have two services.

        In a perfect world, I would cancel DirecTV Now and wait for the new app; but I don’t want to because I’m on the Go Big promo and the DVR could be priced or have different storage allocations based on your package.

        • Evan

          If I really love a show I just buy it on iTunes for now. Great for downloading on long trips. It’s great for the few must see on Fox shows since Boston is taking forever to get Fox on anything other than Hulu and YouTube TV.

    • Mulligan

      Yes the quick swipe to the left or right is still present.
      Right now it is recording individual shows, I see no series listed anywhere
      I believe different beta testers have a variety of storage limits during this program from 50, 100, 600 etc…
      It’s early on, but this will be a popular feature/service with time

      • risingtide

        Man, that swipe-to-change channel thing is really annoying. I know they’re trying to replicate the tradition Up/Down channel surfing. But most people don’t do channel surfing anymore. They know to go to specific channels.

        Instead of the FF/REW arrow buttons, they should use those to change channels if it matters to them. People can then fastforward or rewind the same way we do on other video apps like YouTube and Netflix.

        I’m guessing they want to keep the storage limit a mystery to all of us.

        • Mulligan

          Looks like 100 hrs is more the normal for now maybe the default? The fwd and rwd arrows all allow 1x,2x,3x,4x speeds. It takes a second to resume but that can be improved upon in later builds.

    • mnsportsgeek

      Fall goes until late December.

      • Evan

        Fall means winter 2018 then.

        • risingtide

          Yes, by AT&T standards, I’m guessing fall is really Winter.

    • Evan

      Hopefully it can find shows and not just episodes or not be able ti find the content which you are looking for. That gets annoying.

      • risingtide

        I hope they get it right in “beta”

      • Mulligan

        Yes the search allows multiple options shows, seasons, etc… I do agree this search area needs to be a strong point and should be robust. We’ll have to see how they implement it.

        • Evan

          For me search is too stupid without the DVR. Not an AT&T customer so I haven’t experienced it.

  • REP

    I wish they change and make the interface a little more advance…but it looks the same.

    • Mulligan

      I think this is early in the first few innings. The ATV platform provides a long long runway for innovation. It’s getting crowded so innovation on the ATV platform will be what sets other providers apart. I think this will come with time and I’m looking forward to it as well. This is the building blocks of the future of DTV and each year and app release should build on that. Honestly we all have not seen anything yet with what’s coming over the next 3-5 years with TV/entertainment in general. Buckle up

    • Evan

      The guide is their worst feature. Too bugged. Selecting a channel is very difficult. Finding the cursor on Apple TV is the most difficult. The pick a blue line with a dark blue background? I’m not colorblind but that it hard to see. PS Vue does the guide right.

      • Karl Childers

        Rarely have any problems with the guide on Apple TV. It is usually very snappy and responsive. PS Vue’s guide is atrocious.

        • Evan

          I have never had issues with PS Vue’s guide.

      • Daniel Darnell

        I’d agree the DirecTV Now guide is fine and is smooth and works quite well, now the PS Vue guide yes I find it to be a jumbled mess and not that user friendly.

        • TaiPeng

          DTVN’s guide on Apple TV is extremely slow. I have a high speed DSL connection from my local phone company @25MBps which is enough bandwidth to stream in HD.

          • Daniel Darnell

            It was fine on my Apple TV and I have the same 25 Mbps connection, it was very fast and smooth.

  • Karl Childers

    On the guide it looks like they changed the channel icons from white to color which is a nice touch. They also added episode descriptions. I hope that DVR content is well-managed.

    • Mulligan

      Recordings are listed from new/current to oldest. A center press on the ATV remote pulls up the delete recording prompt. On iphone and ipad, a swipe to the left prompts a red delete.

      • Karl Childers

        Thank you for the info. If you record multiple episodes of a show do you know how they are displayed? I remember watching Luke’s review of the Sling DVR and how awkward it looked to have to scroll through a carousel of thumbnails (all the same) for episodes. After you select a show all you really need is a list…not a hundred repeating pictures.

        • Mulligan

          If you expand the my library It’s a vertical list with clip art and date/day of recording for each. It does not group multiple shows into one. That’d be nice i.e 2/2 and 3/3

    • Evan

      A blue line on a dark blue background? I bet finding the cursor is still a chore. The guide is bad. It hangs. It doesn’t load for premium channels occasionally. Sometimes there is no cursor to select a show. It’s a mess. This is without DVR.