Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Sorting My TV

John Siracusa:

For a few years now, I’ve tracked the TV shows I’m watching using the iOS app Couchy, which integrates with the service. Sadly, Couchy ceased development last year. I’ve kept using it since then, but in the past few weeks it’s finally started to fail.

I looked at (and purchased) many, many alternative apps back when Couchy’s demise was announced, but I could never find one that I liked as much. In particular, I haven’t found a match for the information density of Couchy’s main screen combined with its “smart” sort order.

He has a great sketch of how an algorithm might work.

Apple TV already knows what I watch, and I trust Apple more than most companies with my data. Why does it still offer so little help in finding the episode I want to watch next?


Update (2020-02-22): Louie Mantia:

Basically all I want my AppleTV to do is this:

• Episodes I can watch right now up top.
• Next week’s episodes in the second row, with an indication of the day it’s available to watch.
• Display upcoming seasons of shows I watch on a third row, with expected release dates.

Via Dan Grover:

This is totally how streaming devices should work. Why do we have apps there?

Update (2020-02-24): Tyler Hall:

I feel like a complete and hypocritical shithead saying this as someone who charges money for the things I create, but I simply went back to piracy last Summer for TV shows. The UX is just light years better than what any major media company offers 🤷‍♂️😔

2 Comments RSS · Twitter

Why is the TV app on the Mac so terrible? (I don't have an Apple TV to compare) Trying to find the exclusive shows on the Apple TV service is a chore, it's like the app wants me to watch everything BUT the shows that I actually have a subscription for. And even when I'm in the middle of a season of a show, it's excruciating to try to navigate to the next new episode. It's constantly trying to push me into episodes I've already seen! And hiding the new ones behind extra clicks on a carousel.

It's like 10+ clicks just to launch the app, find wherever they've hidden the link to Servant this time, click it, click a bunch more to find the current newest episode, click on that, and click again to download it. I sometimes wonder if anyone at Apple actually uses it -- it really is Windows XP level of bad UI. Why can't I just "favorite" whatever shows I'm interested in, and have my own personal tab for those shows, which automatically prominently displays the episodes that I haven't seen (all on one page, FFS) so that I can just click on one and start watching? And when I finish an episode, if the next one is available, show it as a prominent link when I exit back to the app UI from fullscreen?

Both Amazon & Apple’s TV platforms are not very good at watching what you’ve paid for. They just direct you back to the stores to buy more. Amazon’s not quite as bad for me. It’s a major PITA to find content on the channels you pay for.

Leave a Comment