YouTube TV — Everything you need to know
November 8, 2017
When you think of online video, YouTube is probably the first name that springs to mind.
Since it was founded in 2005, the video-sharing website has grown into an unstoppable force. Earlier this year, it was reported that YouTube was seeing 1.5 billion logged-in users every month. As Tech Crunch discussed, these users spend an average of over one hour a day watching YouTube on mobile devices.
Rumours have long been circulating that Google would be introducing a live TV service, and now the tech giant has launched such a service through YouTube TV.
Given that TV viewing habits are changing to watch more online, it should be of no surprise that Google wants to get a slice of the action.
So, what exactly is YouTube TV, what channels can you watch, and how much will it cost?
What is it?
When people tune in to watch TV, they are provided with a wealth of content but face limitations in how they watch it.
As Pocket-lint notes, you can’t just watch TV when you want, on any screen. And this is what YouTube TV is trying to change. Google described the new venture as “live TV designed for the YouTube generation – those who want to watch what they want, when they want, how they want, without commitments.”
And that is the biggest point about YouTube TV — it is a mobile platform.
Discussing the new service, product management director at YouTube TV, Christian Oestlien, said that it is “TV that lives on your phone, a cloud DVR, all of the above.
“What we saw in practice was that the majority of our watch time was in the living room, through Cast. And the number one request we get from consumers is more options, native options, for the living room.”
Starting out on Google’s Chromecast, YouTube TV will now be available in the app store for Android TV and Xbox One devices. It will also be rolling out to Apple TV, Roku, and smart TVs from Samsung, Song and LG.
The initial line-up includes over 40 major US networks, including CBS, Fox, NBC and CBS, as well as 10 sports networks, including ESPN, Fox Sports and NBCSN.
With YouTube TV, users will be able to watch the content from their mobile devices, laptop, through Google Chromecast or via smart TV. It will also be integrated with Google Home so you can ask Home to play a programme on your Chromecast.
As well as providing live TV, YouTube TV also includes unlimited cloud DVR storage. This means users will be able to add shows or sports teams to their favourites, and the app will automatically save content for you. You can record as many shows as you want at one time, and it won’t use any data or memory on your mobile device.
You’ll be able to stream the recording from any device, at any time, and fast forward or rewind. Google will store recordings for nine months, giving you time to go back and watch your favourite episodes or sports moment.
YouTube TV customers can sign up for $35 a month, with no contract. Users can cancel at any time and up to six users can access the content when they want, and create their own recommendations and personal cloud DVR storage.
The bad news? It’s currently only available in selected US cities. As the service is only just rolling out, we’ll have to wait and see if it ends up on our side of the pond and, if so, how long we’ll have to wait.