Disney Brings Its Media Apps to Android TV

Disney is a large media corporation, with a variety of popular brands like Mickey Mouse, Marvel, and Star Wars. It also owns a number of TV channels such as Disney Channel, Disney XD, and others such as ABC and Freeform (previously called ABC Family). They have just brought their apps for each channel to Android TV, further narrowing the content gap between cable and Android TV.

Notice the key icon in the top-left corner. This means I need a cable provider.

A cable subscription is definitely useful. By default, a lot of content is locked, meaning you can’t watch it until you sign in. Then you get access to on-demand content from many of their shows and even watch a live stream of content. However, there are some particular episodes which are free.

Though this show primarily required a cable subscription, I was able to find this one episode which did not. I imagine there are a few episodes for each show which act like a teaser which Disney can promote to get you to upgrade. It’s possible in the future that Disney creates a subscription service cut-off from cable which consumers can purchase. Then these episodes would act as a “free trial” to get you to join their OTT service.

You can watch live TV and view this tiny TV guide
You can watch live TV and view this tiny TV guide

These apps, though each supporting the Leanback interface, don’t support other features. There are no recommendations or global search features, and though they let you watch live TV, none of them support Live Channels. There’s still plenty that Disney can do to make their apps first class beyond just putting content on screen.

Each app is free to download on Google Play.

Nick Felker

Nick Felker

Nick Felker is a student Electrical & Computer Engineering student at Rowan University (C/O 2017) and the student IEEE webmaster. When he's not studying, he is a software developer for the web and Android (Felker Tech). He has several open source projects on GitHub (http://github.com/fleker) Devices: Moto G-2013 Moto G-2015, Moto 360, Google ADT-1, Nexus 7-2013 (x2), Lenovo Laptop, Custom Desktop. Although he was an intern at Google, the content of this blog is entirely independent and his own thoughts.

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