DIRECTV Now is informing subscribers that they will only be able to access its live streaming channels on computers and laptops using the Google Chrome browser, starting at the end of June, if not sooner.
The service, which is owned by AT&T, currently also supports Internet Explorer 11+ for Windows 8 and above, and Safari. On its Help page, however, DIRECTV Now is already advising people to use Chrome instead of Explorer and Safari, although it says the latter two can be used to manage their accounts.
And by month’s end, DIRECTV Now subscribers on computers and laptops will have to use Chrome exclusively to access the service.
“For our best streaming experience, DIRECTV NOW will live exclusively on Google Chrome when accessed via your computer,” DIRECTV Now’s Twitter customer service team wrote this week.
DIRECTV Now did not provide more reasons for the restriction other than to say Google Chrome will ensure the “best streaming experience.” But some DIRECTV Now subscribers have said they have experienced picture interruptions and login issues when using Explorer and Safari. (Note: Some subscribers have also complained about Chrome.)
The live streaming service, which is also available on Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV devices, Roku (added late last month), Chromecast and various mobile devices, has struggled to deliver an error-free picture since its debut on November 30. Customers have complained of everything from incorrect blackouts to picture freezing to an inability to log in to the system.
The decision to restrict computer and laptop users to Chrome is likely an effort to improve quality control, which AT&T executives have acknowledged publicly is a top priority.
However, some subscribers have responded angrily on Twitter, saying they prefer Explorer or Safari, and wouldn’t have signed up for DIRECTV Now if they had known they would be forced to use Chrome.
“Chrome is a battery hog and I don’t trust Google with my data. This is unacceptable,” tweeted @Delsx.
Here is a warning that one subscriber witnessed this week when he tried to access DIRECTV Now using a different browser than Chrome.
CordCutterNews.com first reported DIRECTV Now would go exclusively with the Chrome browser.
— Phillip Swann