Comcast is continuing to roll out its Xfinity TV service. On Tuesday (Dec. 7), the company released an app for users of Android smartphones, adding to its collection of services allowing customers to watch the same TV shows, movies, and on-demand programming on computers and mobile devices that they currently watch on Comcast cable.
(For clarity’s sake, Comcast will remain the cable company’s corporate parent name, but Xfinity is becoming the brand name of these various services.)
Last week I wrote about the grueling five-day process involved in getting the Xfinity TV app to work on my Apple iPad. This, however, was a pleasurably different experience. Using my Android smartphone, a Motorola Droid X, I downloaded the app from the Android app store, put in my user name and password — the software automatically added in the “@comcast.net” address next to my user name — and, voila! I had liftoff in a few seconds.
Like the Apple iPad/iPhone apps, the Android app is a work in progress. Unlike those apps, which fully control your cable box, the Android does not yet have the ability to act as a remote control and switch channels on your TV. That added functionality will be available soon, according to a Comcast spokesperson said.
The Android app, however, will let you review your local channel listings and set up recordings from those listings on your digital recorder. It also has other capabilities for handling additional Comcast services if you subscribe to them, such as their Internet and phone services. There may be a few glitches in the next day or two — it just launched, the spokesman added — but the Android service should soon be working as smoothly as the other mobile apps.
Neither the Apple or Android app allow you to watch your cable programming on your mobile device . . . but it's coming. Take a look at Xfinity TV on a computer for an idea what what you'll be seeing on your smartphone or tablet — if you're a Comcast subscriber, that is.