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Channels for iPhone and iPad adds support for offline viewing in new update

Channels Downloads On Ipad
Channels Downloads On Ipad (Image credit: Fancy Bits)

What you need to know

  • Popular live and recorded TV app Channels has been updated with offline viewing support.
  • Content can be downloaded to iPhones and iPads for viewing when no network connection is available.

Channels, a popular app for watching live and recorded TV shows and movies using an accompanying DVR app that runs on a home server, has been updated to allow content to be downloaded for offline viewing.

The app, which is available for download via the App Store, has long allowed people to watch content both at home and away from it but this new update means that the same content can now be viewed even when there is no internet connection — like on an airplane, for example.

The feature was announced via blog post and will allow all recorded content to be downloaded on-device, ready to be watched anywhere and anytime. That content will automatically sync back to the main server when a connection is established as well, meaning watch histories will always be lined up. Channels can even download the content in the background, even when the app has been closed. That's a big deal for those who are downloading huge movies and don't want to have to wait for the process to complete.

The new update also includes a number of improvements and fixes, including those related to various instances where the app would crash.

The full release notes list of changes reads:

  • NEW: Download your movies and TV shows directly to your device and watch offline
  • IMPROVED: compatibility with ATSC 3
  • IMPROVED: Remote streaming behavior with an unstable connection
  • FIXED: Remote playback would not use adaptive bitrate for Live TV on first playback after app launch
  • FIXED: Memory leak causing app to crash during playback
  • FIXED: Infrequent crash when leaving app when subtitles are on
  • FIXED: Other random crashers

Those who already have Channels installed can get the update now. Everyone else can download it from the App Store (opens in new tab) now on iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV.

Oliver Haslam
Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.