AT&T TV subscribers using an Apple TV, iOS or Roku device are now in the process of gaining the ability to pause and rewind live TV. While this sounds like a feature many would expect to already be available, it wasn’t for AT&T TV subscribers. That is, unless they were using the company’s own streaming player.
Services like AT&T TV provide an easier way to access live TV channels, due to the lack of specific hardware or the need for technicians to install. While AT&T TV’s supported device list is quite strong, that’s not to say the experience was the same on all devices. For example, AT&T TV’s own streaming player has been capable of pausing and rewinding live TV, while the same feature was largely missing from apps available on other platforms.
That now appears to be changing. Over the past week, user reports have detailed that the ability to pause and rewind live TV has started to go live. Specifically, the first reports started emerging earlier in the week for Roku users. Today, the same reports are now coming through for those accessing the service on Apple TV and iOS devices.
The user reports coincide with recent updates to the various apps. For example, the AT&T TV Apple TV and iOS apps were updated today (July 16). Unfortunately, the changelog doesn’t specifically mention anything about the ability to pause and rewind, but the timing is unlikely to be a continence, suggesting users might want to make sure the app is up to date to gain access to the improved playback controls. For reference, the changelog does mention the latest version also improves Siri search.
An improved experience ahead of a rebrand?
The addition of pausing and rewinding when watching live TV videos is likely to be a highly useful improvement and one many AT&T TV subscribers have been calling on for some time. While AT&T previously prioritized the feature on its own device, the rolling out to Apple TV, iOS and Roku devices will help to bring the experience more in line on third-party devices.
There have been recent indications pointing to the possibility of a rebrand soon. With AT&T in the process of spinning its video businesses off into a new DirecTV company, indications point to the service also changing its name from AT&T TV to DirecTV Stream. While it does not look like much will change with the live TV plans that AT&T TV offers, it is possible that other areas of a subscription, such as device support and features, are starting to align ahead of that possible change.