Keep track of your favorite streaming services and quickly search for TV shows and movies to gorge on
Size: 34.1 MB
At Apple’s September 2015 event, it was odd listening to Tim Cook talk about the “future of television” being apps, given that we’ve been of the opinion the present of television is apps for some time now. Our Smart TV has plenty of installable apps, and we’ve been using iPhone and iPad apps to watch television for years. Even the Apple TV’s had apps for ages now, even if you can’t install new ones from an App Store — well, until the new version shows up in October.
Cook was right, though, in apps being broadly advantageous, in freeing you from the whims of schedulers. The downside is that apps make for a fragmented ecosystem. You don’t only have to know what you want to watch, but where you can actually watch it. JustWatch aims to be the solution to the latter problem.
At the time of writing, the app supported Brazil, Germany, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK. On launch, you select the country you’re in and relevant providers will be accessible. However, regardless of territory, not everything you watch will be covered, but most big players are.
Once you’re all set up, the interface enables you to flick between new and popular shows, ‘price drops’ and a watch list. In all cases, you can toggle providers on an ad-hoc basis, and use filters to streamline your results by specific criteria: TV shows; movies; release year; price; genre; quality.
In use, we found the app had its fair share of problems. It wasn’t always reliable. We had an incidence where we were told that a show we knew was on a particular service wasn’t on said service – so we must have hallucinated that when watching it a day before writing this review. There were occasional crashes, and also shortcomings: the watch list doesn’t sync between devices, and there are no notifications when price-drops hit a specific target.
But despite these misgivings, avid telly watchers should download JustWatch anyway, because it gets enough things right. The interface is simple and informative, the filtering is smart and efficient, and the app does a decent job of flagging up new and bargain content. It’s also already saved us a bit of money by highlighting some price-drops for shows and movies we had our eye on anyway.