DirecTV Now launch rocky with early adopters having poor experience, getting 'Error 60'
Wednesday saw the launch of AT&T's DirecTV Now internet TV service, but the first day of operation was allegedly anything but smooth.
Besides just apps on the iOS App Store not being discoverable for a few hours, a wide range of users have complained about poor performance. Some others have been completely locked out of streaming, getting "Error 60" messages displayed by an Apple TV trying to play back content.
Error 60 is the code that's displayed when a single user has too many streams going on. However, most users reporting the error are only trying to run a single stream, and getting the error anyhow.
Initial AppleInsider testing performed periodically after launch on Wednesday and in the early morning Thursday confirmed many of the issues experienced by customers. An "Error 60" we received cleared up after rebooting the streaming Apple TV, but very long streaming times, and interrupted streams persisted throughout most of Wednesday.
On early Thursday morning, problems seem rectified somewhat, with fewer instances of buffering playback stops, and no Error 60 manifestations. As the errors seem related to peak viewing times, and early service demand, it appears that the problems are insufficient streaming capacity on DirecTV's end.
Regular monthly pricing for DirecTV Now is split into four tiers: Live a Little with more than 60 channels for $35; Just Right with more than 80 channels for $50; Go Big with over 100 channels for $60; and Gotta Have it with more than 120 channels for $70. HBO and Cinemax are also available as $5-per-month add-ons.
For a limited time, customers who pre-pay for three months get a 32GB fourth-generation Apple TV with Siri remote, which according to DirecTV will take 3-4 weeks to ship. Users wanting to pay only one month in advance are given a Fire TV stick.
Further, AT&T mobile customers can stream content for free via the DirecTV Now app. In a move copying T-Mobile's Binge On, AT&T will waive in-network data fees associated with DirecTV Now or the company's existing FreeVIEW and Fullscreen on-demand services — raising concerns about net neutrality violations.