Streaming Problems

Discussion in 'Internet Streaming Services' started by Rich, Dec 1, 2019 at 12:47 PM.

  1. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    A few weeks ago we saw a lot of comments about the problems with some streaming apps, especially from Lloyd (Iparsons21). I gave this a lot of thought and I think Lloyd was right. I've had problems navigating on Hulu and Amazon Prime using my ATVs. I've used both apps for years and I've become used to dealing the problems but they should be addressed. I don't use a cable replacement service but I have to think there are problems there too. And how about the hardware? I really like the ATVs for streaming but they can be problematic at times.

    About the Amazon Prime app on the ATVs: The main issue I see is what happens if you go from one ATV/TV set setup to another. When using NetFlix doing this is about the same as using MRV with D* equipment, you usually get to the same place you left off at. In Amazon Prime that doesn't work nearly as well. I've been watching the four seasons of The Man In The High Castle for some time and jumping from one TV set to another and I never seem to get back to the right place. Simply does not work as well as MRV does, not nearly as well.

    Then you have Hulu to deal with. Navigating thru that app can be torture. The stable apps, the apps you can depend on to keep you in the proper place are few and far between. Netflix and HBO are usually the most reliable. Hulu, AP (on an ATV, I don't use my FTVs often), Starz, Showtime and most other apps leave a lot to be desired. I can see why some folks avoid streaming, it can get a bit chaotic at times.

    Rich
     
  2. lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

    4,751
    350
    Mar 4, 2006
    Herrin, IL
    Yeah, Amazon Prime doesn’t seem to update to last watched in the cloud as quickly as does Netflix and Hulu. Can be irritating for sure.

    And the Hulu layout is just horrid, even worse than Netflix’s mess of a UI. Frankly I haven’t seen a streaming UI I’ve fallen in love with. None of them come even close to the simplicity and power of cable/sat guide screens and recordings screens.

    The AppleTV app is trying, but even it isn’t all that straightforward, and it even makes it a bit more awkward with the mixing of paid, subscribed and free stuff. Not bad with unified search of the services it will search, but just browsing for shows across the supported streaming services isn’t very good. I usually end up in the actual app for the service to do browsing.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
     
  3. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Yeah, using the Apple TV app could be a lot better. I have no doubt Apple will improve it. I've pretty much given up on it at the moment.

    Rich
     
  4. trh

    trh This Space for Sale

    7,158
    632
    Nov 2, 2007
    NE FL
    My major problem has been with CBS All Access. The commercials pause. And sometimes for a very long time. I timed one 30-second commercial the other day that took it 15 minutes and 12 seconds to get through. And you can't skip or FF through them. Shows are fine; just the commercials.

    I've been working with CBS tech support over the past three weeks. But I'm at the point where I'm going to cancel the service. It happens on three different TVs (2 Samsung; 1 LG) and on Fire TV and Roku. I have 1GB AT&T fiber. And again, the shows don't stutter/pause at all. It only happens to commercials.
     
  5. lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

    4,751
    350
    Mar 4, 2006
    Herrin, IL
    I haven’t seen that issue with my CBS subscription.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
     
  6. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

    225
    95
    Oct 13, 2003
    CBS All Access is available as an Amazon Channel. They are running a special through 12/2 for the commercial-free subscription for $4.99/mo for 3 months.

    You can either watch the programs through the Amazon Prime Video app (usually at much higher quality than the CBS app directly), or if you prefer the CBS app you can link your CBS account to the Amazon subscription at Verify Amazon Account for CBS All Access on Prime Video

    Might be worth spending less for a couple months to skip commercials entirely.
     
  7. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Thought I got caught in a parallel bizarro world thing there, I didn't think I'd ever seen a commercial on that app. We do pay for the commercial free version. We always pay for that version if it's available on the apps. Don't like commercials.

    Rich
     
  8. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

    225
    95
    Oct 13, 2003
    I hate giving CBS the money, but I fear that model will become the norm once NBC launches Peacock next year. All these networks want their own individual subscription island of content.

    While YoutubeTV does offer a nicely functional DVR, we still watch almost all our network programming the next day on Hulu because we can watch NBC, ABC, and FOX shows completely commercial free. To get the same functionality with CBS, we have to sub to the service that just gets us CBS.

    I’m with you on commercials. Being able to skip with a DVR is nice, but nothing beats having no commercials to worry about at all.
     
  9. trh

    trh This Space for Sale

    7,158
    632
    Nov 2, 2007
    NE FL
    I'm confused by the difference. On my Amazon Fire TV stick, I searched for CBS All Access and installed the channel. Is that the same as a Prime Video App? If not, how do I run CBS All Access via a Prime Video App?
     
  10. trh

    trh This Space for Sale

    7,158
    632
    Nov 2, 2007
    NE FL
    I didn't have this problem until about 3 months into my subscription. Now almost every commercial pauses. Some just a few seconds; others minutes. I don't use the term buffering because when buffering happens, I'll get a spinning circle or a 'Loading' message and I've not seen those with these CBS commercials. And again, the shows never have this issue, just the commercials. The cynic in me thinks it is CBS' way of getting me to subscribe to the commercial-free app.
     
  11. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

    225
    95
    Oct 13, 2003
    The Fire Stick itself is basically the "Prime Video App." On a device like an AppleTV or Roku, you launch the Amazon Prime Video app to get access to Amazon streaming content. If you use a Fire Stick, you're already presented with Amazon content as part of the main menu system.

    On the FireTV you can install the CBS app, but you can also subscribe to CBS All Access directly through Amazon itself. An example link to sign up for the channel would be here: Amazon.com Sign up for Prime Video

    The benefit of subscribing through Amazon is they re-encode everything from masters, and stream it using their own CDNs. For shows like Game of Thrones, Amazon was streaming episodes at almost double the bitrate of HBO's own NOW and GO apps. That meant that the dark scenes that people complained about in the final season were actually pretty watchable when watching the Amazon encoded streams. It's the same deal with CBS content; the Amazon encodes of CBS:AA content tends to look better than the same show streamed directly from CBS' own app.
     
  12. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    I've gotten to the point where the thought of having to deal with commercials for "normal" TV disturbs me to the point where I will happily pay to get rid of them. I don't mind skipping thru the commercials on sporting events using the HRs because there will always be "dead spaces" in sports broadcasts. They have to fill up those spaces with something, I get that. Actually, I kinda enjoy commercials, I just can't stand seeing the same commercials over and over.

    We became un-tethered to schedules and guides a few years ago. We started binging on series sometime in the late 90s when we were using 12 VCRs to record whatever interested us. DVRs took the place of the VCRs in 2002 and I thought nothing would replace the DVRs...ever. Streaming replaced the DVRs for the most part and things got a lot simpler. Gotta wonder, what's next? Something better? One can only hope.

    Rich
     
  13. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    I did not know that. Thanks.

    Rich
     
  14. inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

    24,577
    1,424
    Nov 13, 2006
    Where are you getting that companies are allowing amazon access to original masters and they are allowed to encode from there?
     
  15. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

    225
    95
    Oct 13, 2003
    “Officially” (discussed publicly by the players involved) there was a presentation at an AWS re:Invent conference a couple years ago. I’m trying to find the link and coming up short. It was a topic about how you could leverage AWS for media re-encoding, and through that talk they walked through the pipeline they used for the Amazon Channels encoding process.

    Unofficially, if you look at the information the eye patch wearing community has assembled, it’s pretty clear when you take the raw encodes from both Prime Video and the native channel apps that the Prime encodes are working from a different source. The MPEG profiles are completely different, and you’d lose, not gain, shadow detail if they were taking the HBO / CBS service content and re-encoding it from there.
     
  16. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

    225
    95
    Oct 13, 2003
    I pay the extra for Hulu with no ads, but that also is the source of my ire for CBS AA.

    For $11.99 on Hulu I get all of the NBC, ABC, and FOX shows commercial free, plus Hulu Originals, plus a catalog of movies.

    For $9.99 (standard price) you get CBS shows commercial free, absent most of their back catalog because they don’t own past season broadcast rights (Big Bang Theory, Amazing Race, God Friended Me, Young Sheldon, FBI, etc), a couple dozen crappy movies, and only a handful original shows like Star Trek Discovery, Twilight Zone, and The Good Fight.

    Side by side, it either makes Hulu look like the best deal ever, or CBS AA commercial-free look like a massive ripoff.

    I fear this is only going to get worse as content islands get more fragmented, especially with NBC launching Peacock next year. I already hate going through this with the wife: “I want to watch the Amazing Race” This season? That’s on CBS All Access. Last season? That’s on Hulu. Seasons before that? Oh, those are on Amazon Prime.

    That’s a lot of horse’n around for just one show, and that’s far from uncommon. Cable and satellite providers don’t have the same back catalog, so it’s not like you can say paying more for them solves this problem either.
     
  17. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    Agree with the entire post. We only use CBS AA for a month a year. Still haven't seen the newest season of Star Trek but we will do that one of these days. Figure a month is more than enough time to see everything interesting on that app. We do the same thing with the Starz and Showtime apps. A month seems to be the only choice when it comes to streaming video services.

    Rich
     
  18. mjwagner

    mjwagner Icon

    1,182
    239
    Oct 8, 2005
    In case you didn’t see the announcement, YTTV no longer keeps you from FFing thru commercials on CBS (and a bunch of other channels) content. IOW, they no longer force you to use the VOD versions of programs that you have in your cloud DVR once the VOD version becomes available for that list of channels that used to force it.
     
    Rich likes this.
  19. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

    34,269
    1,536
    Feb 22, 2007
    Piscataway, NJ
    What I highlighted above makes me wonder if using my Cubes rather than my ATVs would give me better PQ. I've always thought Amazon's PQ wasn't quite as good as what I get on the ATVs. Am I reading that correctly, are you actually seeing better PQ using a Fire TV device than what we get on the ATVs?

    Rich
     
  20. wmb

    wmb Godfather

    493
    9
    Dec 17, 2008
    Multiple email addresses = multiple free trials.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     

Share This Page

spam firewall