YouView has confirmed that its Android app will be launched within the next two weeks. Early indications suggested a May launch, but we’re now being told that mid-June is when it’ll land.
Even now, we’re still not being given a concrete release date but today we were able to get some hands-on time with an early version of the app (click the thumbnails below to enlarge).
So far, so good. The early version we saw was being demoed on a Google Nexus 4 and a Samsung Galaxy S3. It’s virtually identical to the iOS app in terms of design and functionality. We didn’t have enough time to test the remote record function but we were able to look forwards in the programme guide and set reminders easily enough.
Read Recombu Digital’s guide to YouViewRichard Horton, CEO of YouView, revealed that he’d tested out remote recording himself, telling us that he’d been able to set a recording over 4G while on a business trip in Seoul. British holidaymakers who habitually forget to set recordings for EastEnders can breathe a sigh of relief.
The YouView Android app will also eventually include support for TalkBack, Google’s voice recognition software, on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean devices. Susie Buckridge director of product revealed that YouView has been working closely with the RNIB to ensure that the Android app is as accessible as possible for blind and partially sighted users.
When asked about the delay, Horton said that for reasons of accessibility, iOS was picked first due to reach and ease of use. Much work has been done to ensure that the Android app works as well as the iOS counterpart and from what we’ve seen it seems like YouView has just about hit that target. There’s some final tweaks to the app that need to be made before it launches on Google Play.
Future features that YouView is considering for both the Android and iOS apps include a smart remote function, that’ll let you swish through the YouView EPG with your phone instead of the usual remote. Going forwards, YouView hopes that updates to both apps will be released in tandem so as not to keep Android users out in the cold for so long.
YouView says that the app will work on Android devices running 2.3 Gingerbread and above and has been optimised for the Samsung Galaxy S2, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Ace as well as the HTC One S and the LG-made Google Nexus 4.
As soon as that elusive release date manifests, we’ll let you know.
Update: YouView has launched its Android app.