Here Comes Part One of the New User Interface

Sep 24, 2015 by Ben Weinberger

As the head of product, I was hired with one goal in mind: to make the Sling TV experience even better.

I have done a lot of listening. I listened to our partners, employees, media and more. But most importantly, I listened to all of our subscribers. And trust me when I say this: I hear you. Whether it was an email, tweet, Facebook post or a comment on reddit, I’ve most likely read it. I know a number of you are looking forward to what’s next.

I’m here to announce the first of several planned updates to our user interface.

New channel guide and increased details on Xbox One

First up are our Xbox One subscribers. In addition to greater stability, improved streaming and bug fixes on the front- and back-end, you should also notice that the guide looks a little different.

This update is a direct result from your feedback. We know how important content is to you, so we continue to focus on adding channels like AMC, HBO, and EPIX. With more than 60 channels and 10,000+ hours of on-demand content now available, it’s become necessary to refresh our guide. With this update, we’ve created the first step in an experience that makes it easier to find the content you love.

Our Xbox One subscribers are currently experiencing the initial phase of our interface refresh as of this week. You’ll notice in the screen shots below that the guide is the primary difference.

You will also see program details now available immediately below the program image. Speaking of images, we’ve worked hard to get you enhanced cast, crew, season and episode artwork. You will continue to see more imagery and data to help you quickly find something great to watch.

Here’s how the guide works

While viewing the mini guide, click “up” on the Xbox One controller. The mini guide will move to the top of screen and you will see the schedule and all VOD content available for that specific channel. This makes it easier to catch up on the last episode of your favorite show or binge watch an entire series.

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From this screen, you will be able to scroll left and right to quickly navigate from channel to channel just as you could from the mini guide.

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Another change in this week’s rollout includes the functionality for the “Y” button to be consistent with expected behavior on video applications. Now, when you press the “Y” button, it takes you to the user Search page. See below:

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Similar to the previous experience, when you type in a search query like “kids,” it will search TV shows, movies, actors and more. From there, you can select the content of your choice.

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Feedback wanted

This process will continue to evolve. We are focused on delivering improved user interfaces and new experiences that will start to roll out across all Sling TV-supported devices. The most important thing to us is that we continue to incorporate your feedback. We want our subscribers to be as much a part of this process as possible. If you have an Xbox One, let us know what you think. Not an Xbox One user? No problem. We want to hear from you too! Send us your feedback to @SlingAnswers and feedback@sling.com.

I am also on Twitter at @BenSlingTV and will start making my way onto reddit soon. I’ll be back on the blog with updates frequently, so stay tuned.

For more of the latest updates from Sling TV, bookmark this blog, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter (@Sling)!

Ben Weinberger
Chief Product Officer, Sling TV

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