[What Hi-Fi] Sony TV with YouView hands on

SanjSanj Member Posts: 1,644 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited 6 March 2017, 10:48PM in News
Hi all,

Thought you might like to read What Hi-Fi's Hands On article of Sony's 2015 TV range with YouView:

http://www.whathifi.com/sony/tv-youview/review

Comments

  • skillerskiller Member Posts: 295 ✭✭
    edited 6 March 2017, 10:48PM
    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?
  • RoyRoy Member, Super User Posts: 16,546 ✭✭✭
    edited 7 December 2016, 8:40AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?How so?
    Supporting YouView on Sony TVs is like nailing jelly to a herd of cats
  • skillerskiller Member Posts: 295 ✭✭
    edited 29 June 2015, 8:50PM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?Perhaps I have misread it, but I took the piece I quoted to mean that the particular flavour of YouView that is to be (or already has been) implemented on the new Sony TVs doesn't yet have "universal" search, something which we STB YV users have had the pleasure of since its inception. (And I use the word "pleasure" quite loosely - I know some of us would wish that subscription players were not integrated into the search function.)

    So maybe I have misread it and the Sonys do have universal search.

    Or maybe I haven't misread it and the Sonys will be having what many of us have been requesting for a long time (albeit with the pendulum firmly swung back too far the other way!).
  • stormystormy Member Posts: 1,026 ✭✭
    edited 1 December 2016, 9:24AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?Yeh I like the sound of that too. Let me just search the EPG. I'd love that on my Youview box LOL.
  • RoyRoy Member, Super User Posts: 16,546 ✭✭✭
    edited 7 December 2016, 8:40AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?Ah, I wasn't sure what the shoddy journalism was supposed to be.

    While YouView has indeed had an integrated Search since day 1, Netflix wasn't in it, as Netflix was a much later addition. But when it finally arrived, it was a YouView app (or Player, but YouView either way), so it arrived with integration into the YouView search.

    But will Netflix on Sony TVs be a YouView app? Doesn't sound like it, from the article.

    So we have the issue of how does Netflix integrate into the YouView Search? And where is this Search? Baked in to the OS, like YouView, or a separate app provided by YouView, able to integrate some feed they can take from Netflix, and/or other apps there might be, that have never even been on YouView boxes?

    So not a trivial undertaking, and it's quite possible that the journalist in question was told about this, and the extra issues that a YouView Search would face, integrating non-YouView Apps. Hence him remarking on YouView 'being sure they could do this'. Which they clearly haven't, yet.
    Supporting YouView on Sony TVs is like nailing jelly to a herd of cats
  • skillerskiller Member Posts: 295 ✭✭
    edited 29 June 2015, 11:33PM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?Fair enough, Roy - I see what you're saying. I don't profess to be an expert (far from it) or anything other than an interested end-user and I admit I was probably being overly harsh with my questionable claims of "shoddy journalism".

    I would have thought, though, that if there are to be non-YV apps on these TVs then the overall controller of both the 3rd party apps and the YouView software would be Sony - and it surprises me that integrating the catalogued content of these apps isn't "a 5 minute job".

    The article does beg the question of which apps will be YV and which won't and what happens where there is overlap. I know this was asked at the time of the announcement back in February(?) and I can't remember exactly what hard information was gleaned back then and what was simply guesswork. It certainly appears that YV will be using its own "big 4" players, but as you say, possibly not Netflix. But if not, why not? And if there are apps on the Sony that are currently not on YV boxes, how easy would the work required be to have them appear on YV boxes? (These questions aren't directed at you or anyone in particular; I'm just thinking out loud.) I guess it's all about licences in the end anyway, rather than technicalities.
  • RoyRoy Member, Super User Posts: 16,546 ✭✭✭
    edited 7 December 2016, 8:40AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?It's an interesting debate, Skiller, and well worth having.

    My impression is that the apps on YouView are always a little inferior to their native counterparts, even when they are released simultaneously, as with the BBC IPlayer app.

    Even comparing versions driven by the remote, such as on my Samsung TV, the YouView UI for the iPlayer seems clunkier, the responses slower, and the propensity to buffer higher.

    Nothing fatal, but perhaps an indication that developing for YouView is imposing some constraints here.

    You are right to think that perhaps Sony should be the overall controller; but then YouView are the people with the expertise in integrated search, so I expect Sony have handed this job off to them.

    As for "a five minute job", we software developers have a couple of expressions we use - 'SMOP' (small matter of programming), for when the ease of specifying a task misleads the lay person into thinking that there will be a similar ease in implementing it, and 'Fast, cheap, good - pick any two'.

    Is it noteworthy that the Search on the YouView app on this iPad does not attempt to cover the NetFlix content on the NetFlix app here? What is the reason this "five minute job" hasn't been carried out - licensing, political, technical?

    Has NetFlix got a documented API (Application Programming Interface) via which an unrelated app can carry out a content search? (It did have, but it's not public any more). I'm sure YouView could get on the approved list and use it, but it's still a non-trivial task, even with the precedents on the YouView box.

    Then imagine, as I said above, trying to integrate other apps into the search, ones that have never been on YouView. For every one, they will need an API, or a feed, and try as YouView might for consistency, they are likely to each be different.
    Supporting YouView on Sony TVs is like nailing jelly to a herd of cats
  • skillerskiller Member Posts: 295 ✭✭
    edited 30 June 2015, 1:06PM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?I can't really comment on how the YV-specific apps compare with non-YV equivalents (on remote-driven devices, not touch-screens). The only two apps to fall into this category for me are BBC iPlayer and Demand5, both of which were, until recently, available on my Sony Bravia (2010 - model KDL-40EX403, if you're interested!). I have to say that the YV versions of both of these apps are streets ahead of the Bravia ones, but I do appreciate that the Bravia is/was running versions of the app that had not been updated for many years, so I can quite believe that the YV apps are actually inferior to some current-day equivalents, such as your Samsung TV iPlayer. :)

    As for the universal search, I agree that Sony, even assuming that they are in charge, would/should be handing over a lot of the work in this area to YouView, but who actually has the expertise isn't really the issue. Sony, being the one seated at the head of the table, should be able to stipulate stiff conditions on whomever it decides to invite to dinner. After all, they are making a big thing of putting YouView "front and centre" (or should that be "front and center", as I rarely hear anyone say that phrase who isn't American?), so it surely can't be beyond them to say to any 3rd party app provider that their app must open up its catalogue to YouView if it wants to appear on their range of TVs.

    You will have noticed that I did embed "a 5 minute job" in quotation marks. I'm aware that nothing is ever that simple, but in the grand scheme of things, it really should be towards the "very easy" end of the programming difficulty spectrum.

    Especially for an app like Netflix, where the work has already been done, reasonably successfully! So I'm not sure I agree with you that it is "a non-trivial task".

    You ask whether it is noteworthy to mention that the iPad YV app doesn't attempt to search the Netflix content. I would say no. I don't think it is relevant.

    Apps on an iPad (or indeed any such device) all pretty much live on a level playing field. Any apps which are given preferential treatment would have the Apple name on it or in some way be affiliated. There are a few exceptions (such  as when Facebook and Twitter became integrated into iOS), but by and large each app (or set of apps from the same firm) is its own island.

    YouView have deep-linked to some 3rd party apps on the iPad, but not others (like, as you say, Netflix). I imagine that will come, but I don't know.

    I'm starting to ramble now, but what I'm trying to get at is that on these Sony TVs, YouView is being pushed - it isn't just some 3rd party app in itself that happens to run on there... The Sony front-end EPG IS YouView.

    Btw, I'm a software developer too (as many of this forum's members are), and in my experience, things often really are as simple as they seem. For me, SMOP really does refer to a small task and it's usually a case of JFDI. :)

    Oh, and I don't believe the folks at YouView towers have ever given the old "fast, cheap, good" options, as they'd always fail if "fast" was one of the two properties chosen! :)
  • RoyRoy Member, Super User Posts: 16,546 ✭✭✭
    edited 7 December 2016, 8:40AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?I agree with much of what you say, but I do wonder who has the whip hand when it comes to putting apps on TVs and PVRs - the TV maker or the App supplier?

    Case in point is the On Demand players - everyone has the BBC one, because the BBC make that easy, and Demand 5 because C5 has no leverage, but you might imagine TV makers would want ITV and C4 Players as well, and yet these are much rarer. Which makes me think it must be these two refusing to supply their Players, or demanding too high a price; and this would indicate to me that when it comes to the 'big', in demand Apps like Netflix, it will be they who call the shots, not the device makers.
    Supporting YouView on Sony TVs is like nailing jelly to a herd of cats
  • stormystormy Member Posts: 1,026 ✭✭
    edited 1 December 2016, 9:24AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?Its probably a bit of both.

    Sometimes the content providers are slow I guess do not have the resources or they don't think its worthwhile.

    The old Sony PS3 has All4, ITV Player, iPlayer and Demand 5 but the PS4 only has iPlayer and Demand 5 at the moment. Obviously Sony don't create the applications so have to wait for the bods are C4 and ITV to submit them to Sony to implement. 

    Apparently both are coming to PS4 (at some point) and to be honest when they do I probably wont even use the Youview box to view on-demand content anymore. The PS4 has much more horsepower to do things quickly. (iPlayer launches pretty much instantly compared to the Youview or Freetime boxes I have).

    I guess where there is a decent market then the App makers would want to get their App out there? Amazon Prime is on PS4 but seems to never be coming to Youview, do Amazon think its just not worth the effort?

    In the UK Youview has over 1M+ boxes out there doesn't it? PS4 is in about 2M homes in the UK so you would think it would be worth it for Amazon. Maybe its just too much like hard work?
  • VisionmanVisionman Member, Super User Posts: 10,021 ✭✭✭
    edited 22 December 2016, 12:05AM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?At the last official count it was 2.4m ISP boxes plus retail (what? 500k?) plus whatever Plusnet add.

    This debates fascinating, btw. Though remember they aren't really apps, they're portals. :)
    I'm now happy with the disagree icon, because its gone.
  • redchizredchiz Member, Super User Posts: 5,167 ✭✭✭
    edited 20 December 2016, 1:57PM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?I think Amazon is a Prime (I know, I know...) instance where politico-commercial considerations must be over-riding technical ones. Why else would it be available on, say, Roku devices in the US, but not in the UK?
  • skillerskiller Member Posts: 295 ✭✭
    edited 30 June 2015, 10:53PM
    skiller said:

    Then there’s talk of integrating extra apps into YouView’s search function, so you could search across, say, both iPlayer and Netflix at the same time.
    I assume this is shoddy journalism?Roy, something of yours I meant to comment on earlier:
    Has NetFlix got a documented API (Application Programming Interface) via which an unrelated app can carry out a content search? (It did have, but it's not public any more).
    Interesting. I wasn't even aware they ever had a public one as I never had the inclination to look for it! After an extremely quick bit of research, it appears their public one was a bit of a mess anyway, so perhaps better to have nothing made public at all than have bad data available.

    Visionman:
    Though remember they aren't really apps, they're portals. :)
    Not sure if you're being serious or not :), but if you are, then what's wrong with calling them apps? It's a button on the screen which you navigate to and select in order to activate a function. I call that an "App". ;)
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