DIRECTV updates app, gives more live streaming

The team at DIRECTV has been busy updating the award-winning app for smartphones and tablets. The first thing you’ll notice of course, is the new AT&T globe logo, replacing an icon that featured nothing but the DIRECTV wordmark. A new logo isn’t going to get you very far in today’s app landscape, but then again, the folks at DIRECTV knew that.

That’s why they’ve packed in even more live streaming goodness. Most of the ABC/Disney channels are now available for live streaming straight from the app, including Disney Channel, Disney Jr, Disney XD, & Freeform (the channel that used to be called ABC Family.) Not only that, but for a select few in major markets, you can now stream your local ABC and Fox affiliates, adding to the local NBC streaming that the company rolled out last year. Every day, your portable device inches ever closer to being a full-featured receiver, and clearly that’s exactly what the folks at DIRECTV are shooting fo.

This move by DIRECTV parallels similar moves by other pay-TV carriers, but as always DIRECTV is in the forefront. Over the last 7 years, they’ve evolved their mobile experience from simple scheduling features to a full-featured entertainment portal where you can get a lot of the same content that’s available on the live satellite service.

It’s easy to see this move, and the continued development of this app, as a way for DIRECTV to transition to its announced streaming services. In fact it’s fair to guess that DIRECTV’s Android and iOS apps will probably be the basis for its streaming services both on mobile and on streaming devices like AppleTV. I for one would love the idea of DIRECTV porting its excellent app and TV experience to a streaming device.

Overall, I see this as a continued blurring of the lines between living room and mobile experiences. Today’s viewers don’t care one bit where they are when they want to watch video. They also don’t care where that video comes from, whether it’s from a traditional studio or a viral video. That’s a good thing really (unless you’re in the TV production business.) Of all the companies out there, I’m confident that DIRECTV and AT&T are best positioned to ride this wave.

In the meantime, head to your favorite app store or update your device automatically. You’ll be glad you did.