AT&T is about to introduce a cloud-based DVR as part of its effort to create a unified platform across DirecTV and its DirecTV Now streaming service — with U-verse to be added “in the coming years” — the company says this morning.
The telco will offer it for beta testing this summer to invited DirecTV Now customers. The formal roll out will begin this fall for DirecTV Now and those using the DirecTV companion app. That’s when the company also plans to add live TV pausing and parental controls.
No word yet on how much the cloud DVR will cost, or its storage capacity. During the beta test, the DVR will be able to store 100 hours of programming.
Next year AT&T will introduce user profiles, program downloads, and 4K High Dynamic Range transmissions.
“By developing for a single video platform, we’ll deliver new features and platform innovations in a faster, more efficient way,” says AT&T Entertainment Group Chief Marketing Officer David Christopher. “And it will be simple and consistent wherever you watch—TV, phone or tablet.”
AT&T is catching up to some of its online competitors: Sling TV, Hulu Live, and YouTube TV offer cloud-based DVRs.
Also, like its rivals in cable, AT&T wants to move as many services as possible away from set top boxes and other hardware and into software housed on internet servers. That makes it much easier to change features and interfaces for all users.