Already available in cities like New York City (WABC-TV), Philadelphia (WPVI-TV), Los Angeles (KABC-TV), Chicago (WLS-TV), San Francisco (KGO-TV) and Raleigh-Durham (WTVD-TV) for months, the 'Watch ABC' app allows viewers access to 24/7 live viewing.
Here is a description of the service:
The WATCH ABC app is available on iOS and Kindle Fire devices, as well as select Android tablets, including Samsung Galaxy devices. Viewers can also access WATCH ABC online at WATCHABC.com.
The new WATCH ABC service is the first and only linear broadcasting service to provide authenticated viewers with live access to their favorite ABC shows and local market programming, as well as a variety of on-demand content in more ways than ever before, at home and on the go around town. In addition to allowing live linear streaming of viewers' local ABC stations, the new authenticated WATCH ABC service includes on demand access to full episodes of ABC's daytime and primetime programming nationwide, online and via tablets and phones.
Now to watch KTRK online, you have to have one of the following services: Comcast, Cablevision, Cox Communications, Charter Communications, Midcontinent Communications, Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-verse (these are the deals Disney has in place for now).
To get the app viewing on, you'll have to actually log-on through your TV service before you can watch. If you watch TV through an old fashioned antenna for free, then I'm pretty sure you cannot use 'Watch ABC' to watch KTRK at least (just the network). Make it up by clicking to read free TV in Houston.
I watched online through my PC easily once I remembered my Comcast Xfinity login and password. Then I watched it on my iPad through the app with no issues either.
-- My only complaint is the default viewing area is small on the screen through the iPad. You can enlarge the video, but then it is not as clear.
-- Some will enjoy that Closed Captioning is available.
-- I checked my real TV to the web stream and found the television to be around a minute ahead of the online version.
-- There were only a few dropouts in quality, but that could just be my Wi-Fi connection.
-- One odd thing, during the 6:25pm or so sports break, the signal just stopped on a graphical scoreboard. Don't know if that had to do with the station not having the clearance to show certain sports video online. That sports video online world is a murky one legally.
Eyewitness News at 6pm was on when I started watching. The commercials that ran during the news through the app were different than what aired on TV because for the most part they were all ABC promos, a shiny abc logo or a we'll be right back graphic. I wish I could have watched Dave Ward and Gina Gaston on set talking during the break.
To watch KTRK, you have to be in Houston. That's why you have to "authenticate" yourself through your TV service. If you are not in a market with an ABC owned TV station (like KTRK), then I would guess you are limited to ABC network content. The schedule for KTRK showed programming in the future from network shows to syndicated to overnight infomercials. I wonder if you will be able to watch, for example, Houston Texans pre-season games through the app or is that a program that won't have online clearance. We'll have to see...
Speaking of the network, ABC shows are on-demand ready for your viewing pleasure anytime. I'm guessing there will be some extra video for the online world too if there isn't already.
Watching Disney properties through apps is nothing new for the House of Mouse. 'WATCH Disney Channel,' 'WATCH Disney XD' and 'WATCH Disney Junior' launched in June 2012.