Miss the Emmy’s? Limited TV.com app is your best bet for highlights

Sep 14, 2009
TV

While TV.com is a frustrating tease of an app, it could be your best bet to rehash highlights from the 2009 Emmy Awards. While Hulu and other video broadcasting apps are superior, TV.com has the in-house advantage of being developed by the very network that carried the awards. With CBS Interactive’s app TV.com you can […]

While TV.com is a frustrating tease of an app, it could be your best bet to rehash highlights from the 2009 Emmy Awards. While Hulu and other video broadcasting apps are superior, TV.com has the in-house advantage of being developed by the very network that carried the awards.

With CBS Interactive’s app TV.com you can now watch streaming episodes of MacGyver, Star Trek or Beverly Hills, 90210 from your iPhone or iPod touch. Attempting to take on the niche that Hulu users want so desperately filled, TV.com offers users access “millions” of video clips and significantly fewer full episodes from a small selection of television shows.

If only it worked as well as the desktop version of Hulu.com or TV.com.

Problem No.1: The bulk of the video clips featured on the TV.com app are pulled from YouTube. If I wanted to watch YouTube, I’ll use YouTube app that’s already included on the iPhone.

Problem No. 2: You’ll see clips from shows on several networks including The CW and Showtime, but the only new shows with full episodes are from CBS–and the pickings are slim. With the fall television premiere dates upon us, I decided to see if TV.com would be helpful to catch up on a show I don’t watch: CSI. It’s not. There were only two episodes available, both from the end of last season and neither the season finale. Not to mention, the episodes are displayed by episode name, not number, so there’s no way to know what order to watch them in.

The available episodes are from shows that include Big Brother, The David Letterman Show, The Young and the Restless, NCIS, Numb3rs and all three CSI’s.

If you do find a show to watch, the episodes will be divided into multiple parts. This doesn’t bother me (it helps with streaming) as much as the fact that when I did delve into an episode of CSI, there was no way to exit it except for quitting the app entirely. 

I was able to stream some video over both 3G and Edge networks, but the picture wasn’t stellar. Most of the full episodes in TV.com are marked with “Wi-Fi Only” anyway. The picture was significantly better via Wi-Fi, but only when it would actually load, of course. I also had problems with the sound dropping out.

If you’re desperate to watch some random television, TV.com doesn’t require any investment. But I’ll stick with the YouTube app and hold out for Hulu’s version (hopefully) in the future.

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