TV channels are slowly getting out of date

Not just Sky: German streaming services with lousy apps

We like to get upset about Sky here, the pay-TV provider usually offers rather modest software for high prices and needs a lot of time to implement innovations. Is it now unstable streams to Bundesliga games, unstable apps in general, missing functions or incompatibility. As an end customer, you are of course happy to compare, among other things with the apps from Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. But a look at the German market reveals that not only Sky is weak in some areas. The same applies in whole or in part to TV Now from RTL, Zattoo and Magenta TV from Telekom.

Lame apps, nested menus, inconsistent ecosystem

Often the apps offered lack performance. Or modern standards, such as the cast function (RTL Now, Web). Or the apps offered are completely different from platform to platform. Zattoo on the Fire TV is good and modern, the app reacts quickly and offers a decent viewing experience. The Zattoo app for smart LG televisions is completely different. There the app is incredibly slow, confusing and is based on nested menus. Obviously very out of date.

In the outdated Zattoo app you have to open a menu to get to the clearer channel list. The best thing here is that in the main menu, the entries on the remote control are sometimes only carried out several seconds later. On a 2019 television with a quad-core processor. Just one example of why smart TV platforms shouldn't be a reason to buy TV these days, you need Fire TV, Apple TV or Android TV.

It is partly similar with MagentaTV, the app for TV platforms is a touch too complicated for control by remote control. It takes several steps to access or zap the TV channels. The latter is also only conditionally comfortable, the surface with large thumbnails but little overview appears to be superimposed. Everything reacts very leisurely to this. For a TV app that is actually based on the live TV offer, this is a fun story in everyday life.

Sometimes the providers want too much, which complicates the apps. And sometimes the providers do too little, the apps are slow, not intuitive or differ from platform to platform. Finding a good experience for live TV via app that can be used comfortably on multiple platforms is unfortunately not that easy in 2020 either.

Founder and acting boss of, blogs here and only here since 2008. All inquiries to me, in the comments or via the linked networks. More from Denny Fischer