Along with requesting more content from on-demand services, such as Netflix and Hulu Plus, consumers have been pestering television networks and providers to offer mobile access to channels. Some have finally obliged, including DirecTV, but not without significant restrictions. The primary stipulation is availability only at home, that is, while connected to the same network as the satellite receiver. Thankfully, those barriers are slowly being reduced as DirecTV now allows true on-the-go access for live TV streaming.
First arriving for the iPad in March 2012, DirecTV Anywhere gave customers the option to watch a very small number of channels as a live feed, the same experience as when viewing them on your TV directly through a receiver. Today, this (limited) feature is part of the DirecTV for iPhone and iPod touch app.
When browsing the Live TV list, which is located within the “Watch on iPhone” area, while not connected to your home Wi-Fi network, channels are displayed in light gray to indicate they are unavailable to watch. However, when using v2.3 of the DirecTV app for iPhone, a very small percentage of them will now be listed normally, except with an “On The Go” badge to confirm they are accessible via any connection. The choices are indeed scarce, but it’s progress.
In addition to expanded streaming capabilities, this latest release of the DirecTV app includes closed captioning support for live TV streams, plus optimization for iOS 6 as well as the larger Retina display of the iPhone 5 and fifth generation iPod touch.
DirecTV is designed for iPhone 3GS, 32GB and 64GB third generation iPod touch and newer running iOS 4.3 or later, and available in the App Store as a free download.