March 1, 2013
On Feb. 26, Comcast Interactive Media released a new version of their XFINITY TV Remote app. Unfortunately, the update comes with a strange new feature that some may consider a bug. According to the app’s iTunes page, XFINITY TV Remote 1.14.1 includes “updated Network logos for select channels in TV grid.” This sounds harmless, and it is. However, once the app is updated, XFINITY customers are required to download and install the separate XFINITY Player app in order to watch video on their iOS device. Previously, this could have been done via the remote app. The XFINITY Player app first arrived in the App Store in December. Most likely, this was Comcast's way of forcing customers to use it. Unfortunately, they weren't exactly upfront about this, as the iTunes page omission proves. From what we understand, video in the remote app was much better than what the player app shows. Not that either app is rated that highly. Both are currently rated two stars in the App Store. However, user comments about the XFINITY Player app are particularly brutal. For example, under the heading “concrap,” a customers says, "Doesn’t play squat ... still got my hopes up for nothing. " AppAdvice reader Anthony, who first brought us this news, probably said it best, when he explained, "it really mystifies me why they'd push people to an app that is obviously broken for 95% of the people who try to use it." "Bad" app updates happen all the time. Most often, these are fixed by developers within hours, if not days. In the case of Comcast, they've been especially naughty. Not only did they take a poorly rated app and make it less functional, but they also failed to tell customers about it. We'll keep an eye out and let you know when, or if, either the XFINITY TV Player or XFINITY TV Remote app is updated.