Happy Friday cord cutters!
This week we're talking about what Amazon Fire TV users can expect from its upcoming interface redesign.
Also: Q&A on how to request new streaming app features, short cuts, must-see OTA TV, and more.
As always, if you know of someone who might need some insight or help with cutting the cord on cable or satellite, please forward our newsletter, or use the handy share buttons at the top of this email.
OK... now let's get to it!
NEWS > What To Expect from Amazon's Fire TV Home Screen Redesign
Already available on newer Fire TV sticks, Amazon's new home screen will officially arrive on 4K Fire TV sticks, Cubes, and pendants next month.
The team at Protocol sat down with Amazon Fire TV VP and GM Sandeep Gupta to talk about the motivation behind the change, most notably to make it easier for cord cutters to discover content.
Wondering what to expect? According to TechHive there are many helpful improvements like system-wide user profiles, but some downsides
— like large banner ads
Have you already been using this interface on a newer Fire TV stick? Tell us what you think about it on Facebook or Twitter.
Q&A > Who Do I Contact to Suggest App Improvements?
This week's question comes from Brian who says, "I have asked Roku to add a feature to my favorite streaming app but they haven't responded. What should I do?"
Brian likely didn't hear back from Roku about his feature suggestion because Roku doesn't build most of the apps on its platform. The same goes for Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV.
For example, the Tablo app on your Roku is made by Nuvyyo, the company behind Tablo DVRs, and distributed on the Roku platform using Roku's 'app store' tools. All Roku does is a basic check of the app before it gets published.
Once an app is available, the app's authors can use that same 'app store' infrastructure to deliver updates to your Roku with bug fixes and new features.
So, if you have a new feature wish list, a question, or a problem with your favorite streaming app, contact the company that makes the app — for example Tablo, Netflix, or Sling
— instead of the company behind the streaming platform you're using.
Have a question about cord cutting that you'd like answered? Send us a note and you may see your question in an upcoming issue of Cord Cutting This Week!
SHORT CUTS > Save on Tablo DVRs, Roku Streamers, & More
Most weeks there's more news than we can cram into this email. Thankfully 'short cuts' delivers the cord-cutting news and deals we didn't have room for, including:
WHAT'S ON > Must-See OTA TV
As usual, there's lots of great TV coming to you FREE with an antenna this week including:
- Regé-Jean Page hosts and Bad Bunny performs on Saturday Night Live
- February 20th @ 11:30 p.m. ET on NBC/Global
- Canadians can tune into the historical drama Belgravia - February 21st @ 9:00 p.m. ET on CBC
- Catch the premiere of Superman & Lois - February 23rd @ 8:00 p.m. ET on CW
Don't forget to regularly check the TV SHOWS > PREMIERING tab on your Tablo app to find and set new and old favorites to record.
CANADIAN CORNER > BBC Select Launches in Canada
As of yesterday, Canadians can now subscribe to BBC Select, a new streaming option intended to replace the shuttered BBC Canada service.
BBC Select is focused primarily on non-fiction and documentary programming and is available via Amazon Prime Video Channels and the Apple TV app for $6.99/month CAD.
We hope you enjoyed this edition of Cord Cutting This Week!
If you know someone who may be interested in cutting the cord on cable or satellite, please feel free to forward this newsletter to them or use the handy share buttons at the top of this email. Make sure to ask them to sign up as well!