CNET First Look
DirecTV Now trades speed for featuresDirecTV Now has upgraded its Roku app with new features including a DVR but it's a little rough around the edges
Choosing a streaming TV provider should be like choosing a music streaming service. They're all kind of the same, right? Well, not really, because there are some important considerations you need to make, including whether or not the TV service offers local channels or if it has a DVR. In its newest update, DirectTV now has made up some ground on its competitors, especially with the provision of a DVR For the first time but is it enough to take on the likes of YouTube TV and Playstation View. Direct TV packages start at $35 and offer over 60 channels including locals from most areas. The company is now offering some good incentives to join including free apple TVs plus the ability to add HBO for only $5. Its app is available for most platforms, including browsers iOS, Android, Apple TV, Fire TV, and Roku. Like most other services, it comes with a guide and the ability to record, watch from the start on certain programs, or watch on demand. My favorite thing about DirecTV is the ability to channel surf with the left and right button. Channeling up and down this way makes DirecTV the most cable-like service of all its competitors There are differences between whether you use DirectTV on a Roku or an Apple TV though. Some of the functions work in a different way. For example, with Apple you're able to pause live TV and the delay between channel changes is only a few seconds. Versus up to 12 in our testing on Roku. But, regardless of which platform you use, it's pretty straightforward to navigate. And picture quality seems to be pretty good. We did have some issues with recording on Roku though. But DirectTV tells us it's working on stabilizing the platform. The DVR is only 20 gigabytes at the moment. But the ability to pay more for about 100 hours is coming. Overall the experience is fun and the interface is clean. But it's best suited to users of the AppleTV. YoutubeTV and Playstation View To offer a better experience overall, and also have more robust recording options.