Channels app update for Fire TV and Android TV adds Enhanced Library Browsing and new Kids Section

Channels, the stand-alone app and DVR service that provides the best interface for HDHomeRun over-the-air network tuners, has announced its 4.0 update for Fire TV and Android TV devices. This update brings the app on par with its Apple TV and iOS versions thanks to the addition of improved library browsing features, as well as a new kids section that can also be used to lock down the app into a new kids only mode.

The new enhanced library feature of Channels provides separate movie and TV show sections with various filters that make browsing larger libraries easier. You can dig down into your library by viewing new releases, recently added, or recently watched content. You can also now filter by content genre or the decade the content was released. Enable the improved library, which is off by default, under Settings > Library > Enhanced Library.

In addition to the new movie and TV Shows sections of the enhanced library, there is now a Kids section in the channels app. Thanks to a new library visibility option in Channels 4.0, you can now select whether you want content to appear only in the new kids section, only in the main library, or both. This is great for making it easier for both kids and adults to find the content they want, without trudging through each other’s movies and TV shows all the time.
Turn on the Kids section under Settings > Library. The first time you do so you will be asked if you want content to automatically be identified as kids content through various metadata.

Once you have the kids section enabled and content visibility set appropriately, you can then use the new kids only mode, if you’d like. Doing so will hide the regular, non-kids, library entirely. It will also disable the ability to record new content and various library management tools, like adjusting the visibility of content.

9 comments
  1. Chris says:

    Is it worth the $25 price tag? I really hate the HDHomerun app. I need to just go back to Kodi and get my HTPC configured right as I liked the Kodi guide and have my ripped movies in one spot rather than 2 separate apps.

    • KraziJoe says:

      $25? It’s $80 for a year and there is no lifetime option.
      I have it and LOVE IT. It’s interface is nice but the ability to pretty much record any show I can get via TVE is worth it.
      Personally I don’t think there is anything better out there right now.

      • Corey says:

        There are two versions. One is just a front end app for OTA. That is $25. The other is a per month ($8) or per year ($80) subscription. This subscription includes DVR, TVE, Personal Library Access, Custom Channels and access to the front end app.

        I use the DVR service and love it. It is well supported with numerous feature updates.

    • Alexander Ledesma says:

      Good luck

  2. TechyChris says:

    The reviews for this are generally terrible. This app looks like it was made in the 90’s. Seems like outdated technology that’s past it’s expiration date. There must be more efficient ways to achieve the same type of service.

    • D Rogers says:

      Not sure what reviews you are looking at but it’s not for Channels DVR. I haven’t seen a reviewer who hasn’t raved about it and all it can do! It’s very slick and works great plus has so many options. I actually use it as my main way of watching TV and whether you want to watch it at home or on the go it’s hands down the best DVR option and blows away Plex which can only record local channels where Channels DVR can record not only locals but your TVE cable channels as well by just simply logging in with your provider and you can record as many cable channels at a time you want. I couldn’t be more impressed with Channels DVR and I switched to it from Tivo about a year ago.

      • TechyChris says:

        Not sure what you’re talking about but I followed the link to the Amazon app store directly from this post, the reviews are generally terrible. My comment is true and correct.

        • Corey says:

          There are bad reviews on Amazon. Some are years old and some are from international reviewers. For OTA only I used NextPVR as it was a cheaper solution to have a DVR. When Channels added TVE support it was a game changer for me. The mobile ability, tuner sharing and later additions like importing video libraries and creating custom channels with your video library just made it that much better.

  3. Dave says:

    I run Channels DVR Server on my Synology NAS with the clients on FireTV Cubes. It is really great with TVE. I love the ability it has to automatically skip commercials on non-realtime content. Don’t believe the negative reviews.

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