12-15-2017 9:39 PM
I am a long time AT&T customer and a new DTV Now customer and I was told by the salesman that we could stream or cast from our phones to our smart TV. I turns out that is not the case. We now have paid for this service and we only have 1 out of 7 televisions that will work with this new service.
Can someone help us remedy this situation?
12-16-2017 7:42 AM
Unfortunately, the salespeople tend to be ignorant about the details of DirecTV Now and don't seem to bother to actually investigate the details. The only smart TVs that currently have "native" apps for DirecTV Now available are Roku and Fire TV Edition - which have native apps because they run the same apps as the equivalent outboard devices. You can also cast to Android TVs, because all of them (I believe) have Chromecast capability built in. Other than that, to stream to a TV, you'll need one of the outboard streaming devices (list here) - basically Apple TV (4th generation or later), Roku (model 3600 or higher), or Fire TV or Stick (or an outboard Chromecast - 2nd generation - to cast to). Android TV (outboard or built in) is (for unclear reasons) not supported at this point, but there is hope that they will add that next year, after they've come out with the "next gen" apps that are currently being tested for their current device set.
The other problem you may have (with 7 TVs) is that each subscription to the service only supports 2 concurrent streams. If you just have a lot of TVs scattered about, but only use 1 or 2 at a time, that's fine (though you will have to learn to explicitly shut off the app when moving to a different TV). However, if you need to be able to use (stream to) more than 2 of those TVs with the DTVN service at the same time, you'll need additional subscriptions, and there is no quantity discount. (DTVN has indicated that at some point next year, they will make a 3rd stream available - but no details, such as when or whether there will be an additional fee, have been given, nor whether there might be expansion beyond that.) You can also use many (but far from all) network "go" apps on all the various devices using DTVN credentials - and those doesn't count as a stream.
The service isn't really targeted to that environment at this time. I believe that their initial planned target was mostly "cord-nevers" - (young) people who had never had cable or satellite, who watched a lot of video on computers and mobile devices, with perhaps a single TV in the household (I'm obviously stereotyping there, but that is sort of how they described it). For that sort of target customer, 2 concurrent streams and less "conventional" TV devices are fine. Since that time, they've obviously picked up a lot of "cord-cutters" (and families) who tend to have more traditional (and larger) usage models, and have indicated that they view the streaming model as their long-term primary video focus, so they are going to ultimately have to have better support for that. Many would argue, though, that they have a lot of trouble managing the customer model they have now and should fix and solidify that before they expand a lot further...
12-16-2017 9:46 PM
12-16-2017 9:56 PM
Unfortunately, you are only addressing users like yourself in this public user forum. There are no support staff located here. The service DTVN did nothing wrong as I read your post. If you have issues then I would go back to the salesman that sold you on this service. That is where the original issue took place. You did not have to purchase the ATV4 with a 4 month prepay to use the service. There are other devices that work efficiently with the service. Do your homework on the service and the requirements to use the service.
12-17-2017 3:42 AM - edited 12-17-2017 3:48 AM
Right, this is an issue with the sales rep for misinforming you (never trust sales reps when they try selling you this service) and not with DTVN.
Yes, you will need a compatible device in order to stream to your TV, and as others have stated you are only limited to 2 seperate streams at the same time.
That 4 month pre-pay is not a requirement to set up service, but as you mentioned you do get a free Apple TV device if you do the 4 month pre-pay.
You can always do the cheap route and just get a cheap roku device or chromecast to your TV’s.. both cost around $35 these days in order to make it work. — Most people prefer Apple TV since DTVN seems to work the best, but it is also the most expansive option.
But honestly I wouldn’t let a sales rep try to sell you something, most of the times they don’t really know what they are talking about and just want a quick sell. I used to work in customer support, (not for AT&T) and I couldn’t tell you the number of times someone would call in because the sales rep lied or misled them.
12-17-2017 9:45 AM
To give the sales rep a slight break (not that they really deserve it - they really should be better trained and/or willing to research things before they make claims) - to this point, DTVN has mostly been a "self-service" service (go online to get info and to sign up). My guess is that until the Unlimited wireless promo happened, there was little or no DTVN activity at stores - for one thing, there's no money in it for the sales people. And also, to again give them a bit of a break - it does run on Apple TV. The versions it does not run on haven't been available for more than 2 years at this point, and most of the sales types probably aren't aware of the difference (from comments I've seen, many owners of ATVs aren't aware of the major divide between ATV 1-3 and ATV 4+). The smart TV promise is less excusable - DTVN itself makes effectively no claims of that (you have to read pretty deeply into the devices page to figure out that any smart TVs are supported - certainly there is no claim that any of the major smart TV brands are supported), and why the salespeople (at least sometimes) make that claim is unknown (beyond ignorance).
As an aside - it is possible that older ATVs will work as targets of AirPlay from the DTVN app. This did work at one point, and there have been conflicting reports as to whether it still does - worth a try. However, it isn't "supported".
But I will agree with the comments that you really need to do your own research rather than depend on claims by salespeople - my experience in a host of areas (cars, cell phones, computers, houses, TVs, appliances, etc., etc., etc.) is that they often don't really have a lot of knowledge about what they are selling (especially details, limitations, etc.) and rarely will admit that or seek better knowledge. At this point, I trust the details of what they say only to the point that it isn't really important - the important stuff I get from "official" sources, or from disinterested third parties.
What you can do in this case is probably limited - the actual (formal) info provided is correct, and I'm pretty sure their T&Cs (like most company's) declaim any contrary (oral) claims. The best that can probably be said is that since there is no contract, if you end up finding the service inadequate for your needs, your investment to this point is the limit of your commitment.
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