Apple TV's zero sign-on goes live for Spectrum subscribers, but no app in sight

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV
Apple and Charter Spectrum appear to have flipped the switch on zero sign-on functions for the Apple TV, even though a promised Spectrum cable app is still missing in action.

Image Credit: Gadget Whore
Image Credit: Gadget Whore


The feature may require Spectrum subscribers to go into the Accounts menu in the tvOS Settings app and unlink/sign out of their TV provider then sign back in again, according to Gadget Whore. If it works, a new splash screen will pop up letting users know that they'll be automatically signed in whenever they're connected to their home Wi-Fi network.

Zero sign-on allows people who get both their TV and internet access from the same company to be logged into tvOS apps with minimal effort, so long as an Apple TV detects it's on the right connection. It's a step up from single sign-on, which accomplishes much the same thing but requires people to manually enter credentials.

Spectrum is also planning to launch a live TV app to take advantage of zero sign-on, effectively turning an Apple TV into a cable box, but that now seems likely to arrive in 2019 instead of 2018 as promised. Earlier this week Apple altered its Apple TV 4K product page to mention Spectrum's rollout as "coming soon" rather than "later this year."

Other TV providers enabling the Apple TV as a cable/satellite box replacement include France's Canal and Switzerland's Salt.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 12
    Anyone know if this requires you use the Service Provider's router?
    backstab
  • Reply 2 of 12
    WiFi only? Not ethernet?
  • Reply 3 of 12
    backstab said:
    WiFi only? Not ethernet?
    I believe it’s just your home network, doesn’t have to be WiFi. 
  • Reply 4 of 12
    KsuwyldcatKsuwyldcat Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    my question is, if I have spectrum, and someone else has spectrum, why can't I use my tablet at their house?
  • Reply 5 of 12
    Meanwhile, most if not all the other major U.S. ISPs don't even support Single Sign-In yet.
    boxcatchersupadav03
  • Reply 6 of 12
    if I have spectrum, and someone else has spectrum, why can't I use my tablet at their house?
    They know. It only works on your own network. Cable boxes on the other hand...
    macxpress
  • Reply 7 of 12
    That is actually awesome because most of the individual stations in the bundles have AppleTV apps nowadays so the fat Spectrum App covering all the stations may not really be needed at all.  

    If tvOS is able to automatically download all the user's station apps based on their subscription, that is actually much better than the fat Spectrum App.  These individual mini applications will take better advantage of the tvOS and SIRI.

    My biggest complain about DirecTV Now is that the UI sucks since it uses a lowest common denominator UI on all the platforms that it supports and it does not take advantage of the tvOS unique features.


    edited December 2018
  • Reply 8 of 12

    my question is, if I have spectrum, and someone else has spectrum, why can't I use my tablet at their house?
    I think you can just use their Spectrum bundle and be done.  tvOS should detect what network it is on and what the associated TV bundle is.

    This is great because while it prevents multiple households from sharing a single Spectrum account, it does not limit the number of AppleTV streams that can be used for streaming within the household.  DirecTV Now only allows 2 streams at a time although from any network.


  • Reply 9 of 12
    Most contracts with the content companies have provisions regarding TVE rights (which covers streaming to your devices). Some specifically only allow streaming in your own home, others allow you to stream anywhere, and some have no provision for access. This is likely why Spectrum restricts this to your own home network.
  • Reply 10 of 12
    It does not require your Service Provider's router. I have thier modem hooked to an Airport Base Station.

    The individual TV apps work with Live TV. I did nothing to sign on. After I told it my TV provider was Spectrum, Apple TV filled in all the login information.

    In settings there is a list of available apps and whether they are installed are not. When you tap on them from the Settings list, you're asked "Install (Channel App)?"  ALL apps should not be auto-installed because people would need to delete what they don't want. Apple learned that with U2 a few years ago.

    The Spectrum app may only provide the guide and launch individual channel apps when you choose that channel.

    Some of Channel apps will do live while on Spectrum, but aren't in the list. (CNBC is one that I watch during PrimeTime that wasn't listed.)
    edited December 2018
  • Reply 11 of 12
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,697member
    That is actually awesome because most of the individual stations in the bundles have AppleTV apps nowadays so the fat Spectrum App covering all the stations may not really be needed at all.  

    If tvOS is able to automatically download all the user's station apps based on their subscription, that is actually much better than the fat Spectrum App.  These individual mini applications will take better advantage of the tvOS and SIRI.

    My biggest complain about DirecTV Now is that the UI sucks since it uses a lowest common denominator UI on all the platforms that it supports and it does not take advantage of the tvOS unique features.


    When I had Spectrum I much preferred the app over browsing or navigating the cable box and remote itself. It was faster and a whole lot easier IMHO. I was actually highly surprised how much better the app interface was. 
    edited December 2018
  • Reply 12 of 12
    gatorguy said:
    That is actually awesome because most of the individual stations in the bundles have AppleTV apps nowadays so the fat Spectrum App covering all the stations may not really be needed at all.  

    If tvOS is able to automatically download all the user's station apps based on their subscription, that is actually much better than the fat Spectrum App.  These individual mini applications will take better advantage of the tvOS and SIRI.

    My biggest complain about DirecTV Now is that the UI sucks since it uses a lowest common denominator UI on all the platforms that it supports and it does not take advantage of the tvOS unique features.


    When I had Spectrum I much preferred the app over browsing or navigating the cable box and remote itself. It was faster and a whole lot easier IMHO. I was actually highly surprised how much better the app interface was. 

    I have had a chance to actually use this zero sign-on with Spectrum and I am convinced that it is a great start for the future of television.I have also used the monolithic Spectrum app on an iPad and although it works, it still lacks integration with tvOS and SIRI which can make switching station difficult.

    I think that it would actually be much better if Spectrum does not release a monolithic App for the AppleTV but instead require all its content providers write dedicated Apps for the AppleTV.

    Moreover, to make zero sign-on more complete, Apple needs to enhance its TV App with at least 2 features:

    1.  The TV app should provide a Guide which can supports any live TV Provider to show what is currently playing on all subscribed stations at any time. Similar to what DirecTV Now has but with better tvOS and SIRI integration; where I can ask to play or record a live tv show by name, station or time.  For example, in addition to summoning and browsing the Guide manually, I can ask SIRI "What's playing on ABC now?" or "Record ABC from 10pm to 12pm" (assuming DVR support).

    2.  Allow a subscriber to automatically download the content provider Apps included in their subscribed live TV bundle either all at once or individually by name on first use.


    Given that the monolithic Spectrum App has been on the iPhone and iPad for a long time and currently available on Roku, it’s unlikely that it would be delayed for AppleTV.  It’s possible that they just plan to support Zero Sign-On and let Apple and the content providers write TV Apps and I think that would be a great idea.

    edited December 2018
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