Clicker.tv Website Reviewed For Viewing on Television

Clicker.com aggregates and categorizes streamed content from providers such as Netflix and Amazon. The clicker.com website is orientated towards lean forward / PC viewing access. Now Clicker have clicker.tv a website designed specifically for viewing at the ten foot distance on television. How well does clicker.tv matchup to the tv-true criteria?

On first access, clicker.tv presents a quick guide for navigation using keyboard keys. After that, the usual clicker.tv homepage displays the popular and headliner shows together with main sections down the left side. The sections are for Search, Categories, Playlist (applicable if logged in), TV show listings, Web listings, Movie listings and Music listings. Use of the arrow keys takes the "selection focus" to the next nearest item in the direction of the arrow. In this way it works like the Opera browser's spatial navigation (shift+arrow). Scrolling happens automatically on pressing the up or down keys if there is more content to display. To action a selected item just press Enter.

The keyboard navigation is fully explained the help section that is accessible from the top right of each page

Any other keys pressed will bring up the programme search facility, as each key is pressed clicker.tv automatically searches for matches i.e. there is no need to press Enter to start the search. Arrow keys on the search page move the focus to different letters of the virtual keyboard

From the Categories section, you can further narrow the selection based on content type

After selecting a programme, clicker.tv lists the available sources for this show. In this case "Play at" Nickelodeon, Netflix and Amazon VOD. The tv-true usability when the playing the content is dependent on the source of the show ...

.. in the case of Amazon VOD the visitor is taken to the Amazon webpage where no concession is made to ten foot distance viewing (e.g. small fonts) and the keyboard is unable to control the player

For some programmes you have a choice of source from Clicker.tv or Youtube. Choosing the Clicker.tv source embeds the Youtube programme directly in the clicker.tv page but you will still need a mouse to control the player and the player controls are small.

The Youtube programme starts playing automatically so you may not need to control the playback. Pressing Escape stops the programme and returns you to clicker.tv

Vevo programmes also have the option to play embedded in the clicker.tv window but there is no auto-start so you need a mouse for "click to play". A second mouse click will open a new browser tab and take you to the Vevo website, this could be confusing when you are viewing clicker.tv in full-screen mode (key F11 on most browsers)

Vimeo content can be played in the clicker.tv window or to the standard vimeo website. The embedded Vimeo player is even smaller than the Vevo embedded and you still need a mouse to start playing the video.

Linking into your tv-true platform

Using your tv-true browser you can visit http://clicker.tv web page.

On Linux, configuring a remote control to send the keyboard keys to the browser can use the same lirc configuration file for Youtube Leanback.

Because most the content players on clicker.tv require a mouse, then an air mouse would also be an option, although scrolling clicker.tv listings will require the air mouse to have a scroll wheel.

How tv-true is it?

Clicker.tv provides an excellent tv-true interface to access the clicker.com aggregated content, the layout and keyboard navigation is clearly designed with viewing from a television in mind. When using the embedded player on the Clicker.tv page, an accidental second click on the video starts a new browser tab and redirects the visitor to the content providers non tv-true website. The most disappointing thing though is that the tv-true interface is let down when actually playing the content; we are back to a "leaning forward mentality", small fonts and requiring a mouse for control, thus destroying the tv-true experience.

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