Many users watch their favorite TV shows on their mobile devices using apps such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and Crackle. XFINITY TV Player, designed for use by Comcast subscribers, is the latest addition to the premium video-streaming genre. It makes a great attempt at being a valuable experience but lacks many key features that make both cable and mobile video great.
At 12MB the player is not excessively large for an application of its magnitude but nevertheless users should be cautioned if they are on a limited data plan and are not connected to Wi-Fi. The installation progresses smoothly and the user is required to register the application immediately. The user's Comcast ID or Comcast.net e-mail address and password must be entered on the registration form. The user interface opens after the program has verified the account. The user interface is incredibly similar to the Netflix application, except for the color scheme. It consists of a thumbnail image for different movies and shows arranged on a grid. The user can browse through the content by scrolling up and down and swiping from left to right. Users will notice a few problems with this app right from the beginning, though. It does not have all the same content that is featured on XFINITY on demand, and the video history is not connected between devices. This means that users cannot start a video at home and finish it on their mobile device. Most of its competitors have this feature. It also lacks the content from several key channels such as MTV, AMC, and Comedy Central.
For cable users who rarely view videos on their mobile device, XFINITY TV Player may be a good choice. If a user is debating purchasing the cable service purely for mobile viewing, they should not consider this app. Other services provide a better viewing experience without the high cost of cable.