Live TV, one of the most used applications on Android TV OS, has encouraged Google to concentrate on improving the customer experience by collaborating with iWedia on premium licensed Live TV app for the satellite, cable, and terrestrial markets.
With the platform growth and arrival of more apps, Android TV devices are rising in popularity. By pre-integrating traditional Live TV broadcast streams with OTT-delivered apps and services all in one device, the joint solution provides those who are looking for Android TV deployment with a faster, simple, and cost-effective way to scale up production and distribution of set-top boxes powered by Android, while giving the chance to customize the experience in a way that suits their brand.
Alongside basic features such as an EPG guide, channel list, and parental controls, the launch of the premium Live TV app will also unlock new features including branding options for TV brands, with customizable look and feel; Rich metadata; Voice Control with Google Assistant; Deep linking with streaming services and seamless integration with Google TV – new Launcher for Android TV OS devices with personalized experience that comes built-in to smart TVs and streaming devices from top brands. This partnership will see us design, develop, and integrate complex broadcast TV functionality, as well as multi-country certification. We will deliver a modern, user-friendly UI and options for brands to add value as well as increase revenues.
During previous century most TV apps relied on usage of color keys on remote control to speed up navigation between different features, which would not give an overview to users what to expect from the feature itself. Using color keys for faster navigation could be intuitive for more experienced users and those who know all options the application is providing, but that could not be done without overview of the application’s features.
Excessive use of color keys violets fluidity of UI navigation. While most RCUs have color keys we should have in mind that the end user would like to add its own navigation device to be used with TV. Having buttons as GUI components instead of RCU color keys allows usage of remote controller with pointer or even optical mouse. This would potentially allow easier scalability of the application to other device screens. User should be given differentiation of information importance based on size, position and/or color. That way with quick look user would get exact info he is looking for. Too much information also can be confusing for the average user.
Today’s users predict next steps with clear visual indications as well as efficient and intuitive navigation using DPad. Content needs to be accessible quickly and easily, with a minimal number of clicks. Organizing information in a way that requires the fewest screens is a key to good navigational pattern which is predictable to the users. Navigation needs to be simple enough to seamlessly support widely adopted user behaviors. Most users are accustomed to a centralized menu with all the content. In the era of video content hyperproduction and a lot of information user gets to choose from, serving user relevant information is becoming an art in itself. Allowing user to group channels and edit them in an easy and intuitive way allows for easier consumption of relevant content.
Menu items need to be logically organized and at any point accessible via DPad keys. Supporting different types of remote controls for variety of devices this app will be available on is another challenge. Each remote could provide shortcuts to certain menus but should not make it the only entry point in order to create consistent experience for all devices. For example, EPG, SUB, FAV buttons if available should open corresponding item inside menu, but those screens should also have entry point from UI using DPad keys.
To integrate and create seamless transition between Google TV and Live TV app the two should have the same navigational pattern. Recommendation feed for Live TV app increases accessibility to the content right from the Google TV Launcher as well as full integration with Google TV’s Live tab. User should be able to personalize his Live TV experience by creating list of favourite channels or events inside the application which would propagate into Launcher. Favorite lists are something we assume the user will use most often and therefore should be easily accessible and probably set as default view if user wishes it to be.
The goal of the application regarding RCU selection is to enable flexibility. The application will be compatible with any RCU available at the market, crating unified and seamless experience regardless of preferences going to voice control, mouse pointer or standard required use of color keys.
To target multiple customers, yet still provide uniqueness to their brand, each customer will be able to customize UI. Branding is defined using four-color GUI scheme that applies to the whole UI, font scheme, and customer logo insertion inside GUI. Separate colors are defined for text elements, selector, selector text and icons, and background. The minor changes allow recognizability while keeping layout in line with Google guidelines.