Edit: Issue Resolved - Apple TV Version Broken
After the most recent update the standard Apple TV scrubbing has been replaced with a version that is nearly unusable. Clicking the far right or left of the remote’s touchpad no longer skips forward/back, tapping no longer brings up the time bar, and swiping on the touchpad scrubs without the need for pausing and at a speed that makes it nearly impossible to move to an accurate time (it seems that now the width of the touch pad relates to the entire time bar so that, starting from the beginning of an episode, one swipe from left to right will take you to the end of the episode/movie). The last point causes problems because you need to swipe on the touch pad to bring up the time bar, and I’ve accidentally skipped most of the way through what I’m watching when only trying to see how much is left. This along with the removal of support for 15s skips (which is standard for any streaming service) makes it very difficult to move forward or back a short amount of time. Additionally, the Play Next Episode function is somewhat broken on both Apple TV and iOS. On Apple TV it isn’t possible to swipe to the button, and attempting to click on it seems to both pause whatever’s playing and move to the next episode, almost as if the two fields were selected at this same time. This makes it impossible to pause at the end of an episode once Next Episode has appeared, and equally impossible to move away from the next episode button.
Love the content, but the app leaves much to be desired
I really like the content on HBO Max. They have great original shows and movies as well as a lot of popular releases. My only grievance lies with the app. Across all platforms (Xbox, iPhone/iPad, Samsung TV) I consistently receive messages saying the content cannot be played (often times while the show or movie continues to play). I do everything short of uninstalling and reinstalling the app because that can be a massive inconvenience (not trying to do that while exercising, for example), and often I continue to get the error even after multiple restarts. Also, the UI is not the best - it takes some trial and error to figure out how to get to the point where you can choose a season of a show for example. There are also some other, more tolerable issues such as when l download things and try to play them it says I’m not connected to wifi (the whole reason I download is to watch off wifi as I assume is the case for most), long load/buffer times or just randomly logging me out. Again, highly recommend the content and this review would easily be 5 stars if the app itself didn’t need as much work as it does.
Love HBO, but frustrating app
I’ve been a subscriber of HBO for years and I love HBO. I love the overall content, but since the new HBO Max app has rolled out, it has been one of my worst streaming experiences ever. I am a subscriber to multiple media streaming services and none of them do what HBO Max does. I use Chromecast to stream and after about 15 minutes into a movie or show I’ll get the “circle of death” as I like to call it. The app is trying to buffer, but instead of doing it once or twice, it continues to buffer for about every five minutes after that until the movie or show is complete. At first I just thought maybe it was my Internet or Chromecast but it’s been doing this for weeks now. It is definitely a fault or bug within the app and it is by far one of the most frustrating things to experience as a customer. Every time an update comes out for the app, my phone automatically pushes the update through and the non-stop buffering still continues to happen. I have no idea what to do but I know for a fact, if it continues to keep happening, I’m going to no longer be an HBO subscriber because it’s just not worth the frustration. With all the technology experts out there and all the money/resources that Warner has, I’m really surprised that this bug has not been resolved. I’ve read through other app reviews and it seems like I’m not the only person that’s experiencing this. Please fix this so you don’t lose anymore loyal customers.
Love HBO, HATE the app
Everyone loves HBO’s content. There’s no debating this. What I can’t figure out is why, for such a premier service, the app (for iPhone specifically) is so terribly infuriating. My single main complaint is a big one, because it affects my experience almost every time I watch something. THE FAST FORWARD/REWIND BAR FUNCTIONS ARE THE VERY WORST OF ITS KIND. On literally every other streaming service out there(even the most obscure ones), if you tap the screen to bring up the playback options, the time bar can be used to seamlessly drag to wherever you want to continue watching from. It’s likely one of the very most commonly used features of any streaming app. On the HBO Max app, if you aren’t able to sit and watch every movie/show/episode uninterrupted from start to finish, forget about it. Attempting to move back/forward to any point in the show creates enough frustration that I’m convinced it has led to many broken phones. This MUST be fixed. And SOON. Based on the research I’ve done on this issue, many others are displeased with these functionalities(and others) of your apps. PLEASE get this issue resolved ASAP so I can get back to actually enjoying my experience while using one of my very favorite streaming services. I’ve just about reached my limit on how long I can deal with it. This is my final plea. HELP!
Download function is broken and has been for months.
I love HBO’s content, and I was very excited when it was announced that the app would allow downloads for offline viewing. However, I was very disappointed to discover that while you can download videos, if you try to watch them in airplane mode (say when, I don’t know, flying on an airplane), the app will let you watch for a while then suddenly freak out and become trapped in an endless loop of error messages as it repeatedly tries and fails to contact the server. This problem has been present for months and it appears no effort has been made to fix it.
Additionally, the app does not keep accurate track of how many videos you currently have downloaded. There is a global limit for the account of 30 downloaded videos, and if you want to download beyond that you are prompted to delete unwanted videos to stay below the limit. However, when you delete a few videos, the app continues to give you the same error message saying you can’t download more than 30 videos, and does not permit you to download.
The content on HBO is really great, but I primarily only have time to consume it on flights. It is frustrating beyond belief that this app gets so close to the desired feature a d then totally falls flat on its face in the execution.
Yet another disappointed app user
I am absolutely baffled at how terrible the HBO app behaves. Nearly every day, while trying to watch any show from one episode to the next, the app glitches and kicks an error message that the title cannot be played. Trying to cast to a smart TV is just as cumbersome. In order to watch multiple episodes I have to kill the app at the end of the episode and restart to watch the next. However, the app does not reload where I left off, it restarts the previous episode. Not to mention the app does not seem to save watched status across devices- I can watch episodes on my iPad and try to watch them later on my computer; pulling up the website on the computer also doesn’t recognize where I left off in an episode or movie. I have read several negative comments about attempting to scroll forward within the episode, and I can attest it does not work. While I can simply tap the screen along the timeline to select where I’d like the episode to resume... well, it isn’t helpful. Because I still have to kill the app and reload it to go to the next episode. The transition from HBOGo to HBOMax should have been seamless and user-friendly. For some reason they haven’t been able to correct the blunder with any subsequent update to the app.
Love HBO, App needs work
Let me start by saying I haven’t had a major issue with HBO on my Apple TV (yet), which is the only reason this isn’t one star. Like many on here, my issue is not with HBO. They have great movies and shows, quality original content, and opening day streaming all for a very reasonable price. Easily should be given a five star review if it worked as intended. My issue is with the app.
Constant buffering plagues every title I attempt to watch, unless I download it first. Unfortunately the download function is… underwhelming to say the least. If (and it’s a pretty big if in my experience) you can get a movie to download, it does it at speeds that my iPhone 4 would have scoffed at. It doesn’t seem to matter what my internet source is, it’s just slow. More often than not however the download seems to suffer an error and has to start over. It suffers an error if your screen turns off, if you leave the app, if you have a minuscule data hiccup, if you switch screens on the app instead of just watching the tick mark slowly fill up… and sometimes it’ll still have an error even if you diligently prayed to the data gods for every pixel that filled up with that purple molasses.
TLDR; Buffering issues if you stream and a download feature that doesn’t really work.
Excellent content, broken app
How are the HBO Max apps so uniformly terrible on every platform? Surely there exists a template for a functional streaming app. HBO has occasionally done it themselves on their previous apps. This app is just so slow. It constantly freezes, it constantly crashes. It’s more jittery than any of the other major streaming apps. There are delayed responses to my inputs, so my repeated attempts to make something happen result in the app registering a bunch of delayed inputs. I would accept a much simpler app with less features and a plain UI if it would just work. It could be the blandest thing in the world and if it ran smoothly it would be a major improvement and less of a stain on the HBO brand. Please clean this mess up so I don’t have to cancel my HBO Max subscription. It is as slow now as when it was first released, and that has been the case across both new and old devices and on both old and up-to-date operating systems. It is broken on wi-fi, it is broken on cell data. It’s broken on my tv, my desktop, and on all the different kinds of mobile devices in my household. Usually, even when streaming services are performing poorly on my tv, I can count on it being a better experience on iOS. With HBO Max it is even worse. What a waste of an excellent and massive library of content.
Crashes and doesn’t work offline
The selection of stuff on the app is great. However, the download function is pretty much useless because if you try to watch something you’ve downloaded while offline, it gives you an error telling you to check your connection. This is garbage because that is the ENTIRE POINT OF DOWNLOADING SOMETHING TO WATCH OFFLINE... It also needs to be able to pickup where it left off downloading if it loses connection. Whether the reason for being offline a flight, or for the military folks I know that download things to watch when they have WiFi, this needs to be fixed.
Another issue, back to downloads, I downloaded the new Mortal Kombat movie last night. I tried to watch it and spent 2.5 plus hours with the app crashing every time I tried to get it to play. I even attempted removing it and downloading it again and it still didn’t work. I tried it today, and it still didn’t work.
I don’t know if anyone will actually read this or not, because I read a lot of very angry threads last night. However, I truly hope that they are wrong and you do care about fixing this. You cannot understand how much of a moral boost it is for those military folks to be able to catch new movies, especially right now, when they can get WiFi. Please fix this.
By Mayy Violett
To start off, I have to say the plethora of movies and shows available through this service are amazing. I’m always amazed at what high quality blockbusters they have available.
The app on the other hand is not great. I’m constantly having issues with downloading movies. First, when you download a movie, start it, stop it, then come back hours later the title will no longer play because of an error. Secondly, I’m having trouble with titles now crashing the app when I try to watch them. This is very frustrating as I can’t just constantly stream titles because I work somewhere without WiFi and I don’t have unlimited data.
Honestly I haven’t run into any issues while connected to a network it’s only when I’ve downloaded movies. I would appreciate this feature to be fixed immediately as customers including myself pay quite a bit of money monthly to enjoy what title are there to offer. I particularly am very happy with the theater release movies that are brand new. But again, these issues make it almost impossible to enjoy such movies.