HBO is finally going all in with Apple’s TV app thanks to a just released update for its HBO Go app. The new version adds TV support, just like the HBO Now app already had, so you can search for HBO content and keep track of what you’re watching in Apple’s app.
HBO Go is HBO’s streaming app for iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV users who have have a cable or satellite TV subscription. HBO Now, which already offers TV app support, is for viewers who subscribe to HBO outside of cable and satellite contracts.
Apple’s TV app is a sort of nexus for streaming video in that it lets you search for shows and movies across all supported services and in some cases see what you viewed last and keep track of episodes you haven’t watched yet.
HBO Go also supports tvOS’s Single Sign-on feature that lets users enter their cable or satellite subscription credentials once and automatically login to channel apps. That saves viewers from entering their account user name and password over and over, and also saves them from making a trip to their Web browser to enter verification codes.
The downside to Single Sign-on right now is that big names in the cable industry, like Comcast, aren’t on board yet. Until that happens, the majority of people will still have to enter their credentials for every channel app that asks for them.
While it’s great seeing HBO Go support, the TV app still feels hobbled. Netflix recently added anemic TV app support to its iOS and tvOS apps, and Amazon still refuses to release a Prime video app for Apple TV, let alone support the TV app. Until at least Netflix offers full TV support, the app will have limited use for a lot of iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV users.