Comcast finally unlocks HBO Go and Showtime Anytime on Amazon’s Fire TV

HBO game of thrones Season 5 Episode 6 screenshot 7
After withholding access under lock and key, Comcast finally relinquished authentication for two major streaming apps for the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick streaming devices today.

Comcast Xfinity subscribers will now be able to access HBO Go and Showtime on Amazon’s streamers, according to the company. The new availability for subscribers of Comcast Xfinity on Amazon’s streaming video devices follows a similar deal which allowed Comcast customers to watch HBO Go and Showtime Anytime through Roku media streamers in December.

“Both the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick join platforms like Roku, AppleTV, Xbox One and Google’s Chromecast where subscribers can download the network’s app, sign in with their Xfinity TV credentials, and immediately start watching the channel’s shows and movies,” explained Comcast Cable Executive Vice President Matt Strauss in a company blog post.

It’s a long-awaited concession for Comcast, which is perpetually one of the last holdouts among pay-TV providers to allow access to popular streaming apps that require authentication from a cable or satellite subscription. As the largest cable and Internet provider in the country — one which is often the only available option for consumers in many regions — the service has been notoriously slow to allow subscribers to access content from third-party hardware.

Comcast would, of course, rather have users access on-demand programs from HBO, Showtime, and other popular apps like WatchESPN through the cable giant’s own products. Without missing a beat, Strauss was sure to mention Comcast’s own on-demand HBO and Showtime streaming options in the announcement. “Of course, our customers continue to have instant and unlimited access to nearly the entire HBO and Showtime catalogs through Xfinity on Demand. And on the go, they can access both the entire On Demand catalog, as well as live streaming, via the Xfinity TV Go website and app.”

This latest Comcast deal bears similarities to the difficult negotiations between the company and Roku last year. Negotiations between Roku and Comcast over HBO Go and Showtime Anytime support took “several months,” according to a Re/code report.

Comcast said that it now “authenticates more than 90 networks across 18 devices” and it expects that number to grow in the future.

While today’s move is a welcome one for Fire TV faithful, unfortunately, the wait for HBO Go access for Comcast subscribers on Sony’s PS3 and PS4 game consoles continues.

Home Theater

MGM joins the streaming mega-race with launch of Epix Now service

In a widely anticipated move, MGM has launched Epix Now, a streaming platform that combines all four of its live TV channels, and a huge catalog of thousands of on-demand movies and TV shows.
Home Theater

Everything to know about Sling TV: Channels, pricing, and more

Sling TV has grown a great deal since its launch. Now there are more channels and more packages to chose from, with prices to match, and more is being added all the time. Everything you need to know is right here.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.
Home Theater

What is YouTube TV? Here’s everything you need to know the streaming service

YouTube TV is becoming an increasingly major competitor to other streaming services. Not sure if the service might be right for you? Don’t worry, we’ve got a guide detailing everything you could want to know about the service.
Home Theater

Netflix vs. Hulu vs. Amazon Prime: Battle of the on-demand streaming giants

Trying to figure out which subscription streaming service to use while sticking to a frugal entertainment budget? Check out our updated comparison of the big three: Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, and Hulu.
Outdoors

These wireless earbuds use an A.I. to get you moving faster

The new Soul Blade wireless earbuds provide the ability to track your heart rate during a workout while an A.I.-powered coach gives advice and info on how to improve form and efficiency while exercising.
Product Review

Focal’s ultra-clear Sphear Wireless bring sexy back to banded Bluetooth buds

Focal’s Sphear Wireless are a sleek and simple pair of banded Bluetooth earbuds with exceptional sound and an affordable price, making them some of the only non-true wireless earbuds we’d consider buying right now.
Deals

Walmart drops prices on Samsung 4K TVs during Presidents’ Day sale

With 8K TVs on the horizon, the cost of owning a 4K Ultra HD television has dropped pretty significantly in recent years, and this Walmart Presidents' Day sale is offering some great prices.
Home Theater

Apple will reportedly launch its new video-streaming service at March 25 event

The rumors about what Apple will announce at a March 25 event continue to swirl. A new report suggests that it will debut its much-anticipated video-streaming service, which will compete with Netflix and Amazon's Prime Video.
Home Theater

Bose’s technology patents could save an earbud’s battery life

Possibly taking a cue from Apple's popular AirPods, Bose filed a patent application for earbud IR technology that could save battery life, improve sound quality, and possibly help people locate lost earbuds.
Home Theater

ATSC 3.0: The next-gen TV update explained

ATSC 3.0 is the next major update to the broadcast standard we use today. Will this be the second coming of free, over-the-air TV? We're here to explain everything about the new standard.
Home Theater

Samsung accidentally leaks its new Galaxy Buds ahead of launch

It's been all but certain that Samsung would launch a successor to its Gear IconX wireless earbuds soon, but a newly leaked photo and recent FCC certification document seems to indicate that the debut is very close.
Home Theater

Hi-res streaming audio service Qobuz arrives in U.S., threatens Tidal’s monopoly

For several years, Tidal enjoyed a monopoly on hi-res music streaming in the U.S. Now, French company Qobuz is here to offer some competition with a variety of monthly plans starting at $10 a month.
Home Theater

Throw away those EarPods -- we dug up the best headphones in every style

Trolling the internet for hours to find headphones is no way to live. Instead, leverage our expertise and experience to find the best headphones for you. Here are our 10 favorites.