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Has DIRECTV Now Fixed Its Technical Problems?

Has DIRECTV Now turned around its once seemingly never-ending series of programming errors and other technical snafus?

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From its debut on November 30, AT&T’s live streaming service was a technical disaster, suffering lengthy outages, inadvertent blackouts of NFL games, picture freezing, login issues, and a host of other problems. Subscribers took residence on social media sites to slam DIRECTV Now with pleas for help, and scathing testimonies of their bitter experiences.

The issues were so widespread and apparent that rival industry executives even openly mocked DIRECTV Now in promotional campaigns.

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But in recent weeks. the nasty comments on Twitter and Facebook have dramatically declined, according to this observer who monitors such posts on a daily basis. In addition, DownDetector.com, which tracks online technical problems, has only noted three significant issues for DIRECTV Now in the past month.

To be sure, AT&T’s live streaming service is far from perfect now. Like every other live streamer, the service is still encumbered with picture buffering, and occasional oddities such as incorrect blackouts of Discovery programs as if they were National Football League games.

DIRECTV Now was also embarrassed recently when it failed to fulfill its promise to deliver an app for Roku streaming devices in the first quarter.


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But there seems to be a sense of normalcy now at DIRECTV Now. You don’t expect the service to crash every five minutes, or prevent you from even logging into your account. Such things still happen, but not nearly as often.

DIRECTV Now’s consumer ratings at the ITunes store (2 stars out of a possible five) and Android app stores (2.4 stars out of a possible five at Amazon.com) are still nothing to write home about. But more positive reviews have been posted in the last few weeks than normal so it’s possible the ratings will rise some in the coming weeks.

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As a live streaming service, DIRECTV Now will continued to be challenged. The technology clearly isn’t ready for primetime as rivals Sling TV and PlayStation Vue have found out the hard way over the last two years. Unlike traditional pay TV services, live streaming still has too many picture burps and outright system crashes if traffic exceeds expectations.

But it appears from this view that DIRECTV Now has emerged from the rough waters that once threatened to capsize the service entirely.

— Phillip Swann

About TV Answer Man (633 Articles)
The TV Answer Man is veteran journalist Phillip Swann who has covered the TV technology scene for more than two decades. He will report on the latest news and answer your questions regarding new devices and services that are changing the way you watch television.

25 Comments on Has DIRECTV Now Fixed Its Technical Problems?

  1. Justin Lott // April 20, 2017 at 10:59 am // Reply

    Ultimately there capacity issues would have likely resolved after 4 months due to many of the users apple TV promotions being over. I truly think user base is half what it was in January which has allowed them to increase resolution.

    They still have everyday picture stuttering on their streams on both my fire tvs. My wife complains. We hit pause and play and it resolves it so I haven’t wined about it.

    I think most people are still sitting and waiting on seeing Hulus offering.

  2. I use Apple TV for my direct tv now and I have it in 4 rooms and streaming is damn near perfect. When I used my firestick I had problems with the app crashing at times and even buffering but I think that has to do with the firestick

  3. I could never get the Directv player to work on my computer. Tried everything. Had this issue been fixed?

  4. Jeff Cavanagh // April 20, 2017 at 2:04 pm // Reply

    They still need a lot of work on their on demand content. And Roku support. Still a beta as far as I’m concerned.

  5. I enjoy the channel selection but we still have buffering issues and I hate that MSNBC doesn’t play commercials in between their news shows. Annoying. Other than that, I’m happy

  6. I’ve had Directv Now almost from the beginning. At first there were a few glitches – totally understandable. Now they are rare. I watch almost always on my iPad using cellular data. I’m wondering if those of you still having problems are using wifi. If so it could be your internet provider rather than Directv Now. My cable internet is not reliable but the best I can do. Using cellular data is the way to go and it’s free if your phone is AT&T.

    • By the way, I would give it a 5 star rating. I’m just loving it! Bet wifi is your problem if you’re not.

  7. Directv now will not open on my samsung galaxy phone. It does work on my chromebook, and apple tv. Apple tv remote does not scroll well with the 100 channels on.dtv. apple tv jumps all over the place and there is no easy way to go from amc to syfy, and back again.

    • I am using wifi, have had this service since the day it launched. Cannot get Directvnow to stay up more than a few minutes on FireStick. That being said, all other streaming services are working fine, ie, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon. No problems with anything but Direct. Go figure. Not sure what to do.

  8. Jack Stasney // April 20, 2017 at 7:00 pm // Reply

    No, at first my ccast was unstable and firestick was fine. Recently the opposite is true. So really things haven’t moved along much at all.

  9. Michael Taylor // April 20, 2017 at 7:03 pm // Reply

    I’ve been using for 3 months on Apple TV.and iPads and love it.

  10. It crashes less frequently but loading, tiling, and stuttering issues are still extremely frequent. Still not as reliable as Sling was for me, but I’m holding out hoping it improves.

  11. Mykel Wilder // April 21, 2017 at 6:43 pm // Reply

    Patiently waiting for DirectV now to be on Xbox one real soon

  12. I have never been able to get DirecTV Now to work on any device, any app, any browser for over 3 months. Best success was for 2 programs in a row on Firestick- but even that included persistent buffering. Tech support has nothing to do with technology. Chat agents can only repeat the “.help files.” Reboot everything. Reinstall everything.
    Every chat session consists of endless apologies, assurances it will be “working soon,” and “escalation”

    Every other streaming service I have or have tried works on all platforms and devices- Sony Vue, Sling TV, Xfinity Stream, YouTube.

  13. ATTENTION ATT DIRECT TV CURRENT AND PROSPECTIVE CUSTOMERS!

    I signed up for ATT Direct TV Now, got the free Apple TV, etc. About a month ago, I traveled out of my home area to visit family and ATT Direct TV Now failed to work while I was away on my mobile device, but “magically” worked once I got home. About two weeks ago, I traveled for business and the same thing – failed to work when I was away, but worked just fine after I got home. From my conversation with ATT Technical Staff, ATT BLOCKS DIRECT TV NOW ACCESS BASED ON YOUR IP ADDRESS!! Direct TV Now only works from ONE IP address/ONE LOCATION. FRAUDULENT ATT DIRECT TV ADVERTISING, extremely poor service model since it is tied to one physical location!! AVOID…

  14. Carlos Bishop // May 16, 2017 at 4:23 pm // Reply

    I got the AppleTV deal with DirectTV Now but almost all channels have video and a black screen for audio. Netflix on the AppleTV acts the same way. Audio, no video. Oddly the few channels that do work are Disney channels. Ive tried all the troubleshooting and bought new up to date hdmi cords…reinstalled app and everything. Same issue. Anyone had this problem and been able to resolve it???

  15. Carlos Bishop // May 16, 2017 at 4:25 pm // Reply

    I meant I can hear (audio) but cannot see (video), black screen only on most channels

  16. Alice Rychling // May 24, 2017 at 11:04 am // Reply

    Are you kidding my Directv that I watch via Fire TV freezes/buffers every 5 minutes. It’s unwatchable. I was hoping it would work but it isn’t and I am going to have to cancel.

  17. The other night, we experienced no audio from our iPad and no video on the Apple TV. So our solution was to watch the iPad, and listen from the Apple TV. Pathetic.

  18. Previous was describing our latest DIRECTV Now experience to make it clear. BTW, still can’t see most all channels from the Apple TV.

  19. Directv Now is as bad as when I first got it in December. App does not work well with Fire Stick.

  20. Kevin C Higgins // June 16, 2017 at 4:47 pm // Reply

    Directv sucked so bad. 60 Meg service, NO wifi, all hardwired to a fast computer then my tv. It was a piece of sheeeeeet, so I dumped it. Bunch of losers. Bet there are still lies out there. I’ll wait till nearly everyone says it’s good before re-joining. I never watched one show without it freezing. DirectTV executives are really stupid to think the technical personel they hired could make it work. Dumbasses!

    • Could ever get Apple TV that direct tv sent me to ever work. No video when using the DIRECTV Now app. Just bought the roku premiere+ yesterday and so far it works great for now. Had to spend another $80 to get a device that works with DIRECTV Now.

  21. I am a network technician. I worked 3 years as Level 3 wireless tech for Time Warner. I was not the guy you meet in a truck behind your house. I worked the corporate office scene. Direct Tv Buffering continues to lurch. The latency averages 39ms which is acceptable unless you are using the average stick. The issue is not in wireless. It is utterly and completely from the service. To prove this, try watching DirectTv at 4am eastern daylight or standard time. This is when traffic is lowest. You will not have a buffering issue. Now try it any other time….oh! I feel like a fool! You wouldn’t be here if you weren’t trying.
    DirectTv Now needs to give up some of that precious satellite signal. EOS

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