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CANAL + is not only exclusive movies and series. The applications themselves make me want to use this VOD

On VOD services, first and foremost, movies and series are exclusive and the library is rich, but this is only one side of the coin. Content must go hand in hand with form, and CANAL + realizes.

Many VOD services have been operating on the Polish market for years, and another player has just appeared on it. Fortunately, despite the fears, television via the Internet from CANAL + does not multiply entities by needs, and in several respects it is a unique service . I liked it from the very beginning because of the offer, because when it comes to the library, there is really nothing to complain about .

Not a week has passed since the debut, and I've seen in CANAL + several episodes of TV series (Żmijowisko, Z X Archives, Stargirl) and movies (Fast and the Furious: Hobbs & Shaw, God's Body, Secret Life of Pets 2) to which I had no previously access online . However, video on demand services stand on two pillars, and content is just one of them.

Fortunately, VOD from CANAL + is a successful marriage of live channels and content on request with technology that does not cause problems.

At first I was afraid that Poles would decide to use the French brand MyCanal and pin it to another service created by a local team of programmers, and as a result the service will differ technically from their western rivals. The opposite happened - the Polish branch of CANAL + used French technology and the brand we already know.

Thanks to this, television via the Internet from CANAL + is a modern service that is developed with many European markets in mind at the same time. This is a huge advantage, because we can count on the fact that we will not be treated worse than the French, and ultimately even niche from our point of view operating systems and devices will be supported with us.


What platforms does CANAL + support?

The new VOD service has been launched in browsers for personal computers (where Chrome, Safari and Firefox are officially supported) and on mobile devices with Android and iOS systems. Added to this is TV support and set-top boxes with the Android TV operating system and Apple TV with tvOS.

In the future, we also expect support for SmartTV platforms such as Tizen from Samsung and webOS from LG, although at this time CANAL + does not want to share binding deadlines for implementing the applications on the devices of these companies. However, the company is aware that it is these two TV producers that rule in Poland and it is with this in mind.

The most important thing is that CANAL + is doing great on the currently supported platforms.

Noteworthy is the fact that both the web version of the new website and native applications, and these are the same programs that MyCanal subscribers use in other countries, support many system APIs. Thanks to this CANAL + supports such functions as Picture in Picture and multimedia content transfer to TVs via Google Cast and AirPlay.


Many competitive services not only do not decide on it, which even blocks such solutions - probably due to the fact that their creators want to have more control over the playback of their own ads. CANAL +, in turn, when playing content from the library on demand, no additional sponsored content is not broadcast or interrupted by movies and series from the database.

I also enjoy leaving the rigid device limit.

Polish video on demand services have accustomed us to imposing draconian limits on the number of devices on which they could be used. There were even situations that before buying access to content you had to choose which screen to play, which was a problem in the event of a failure and e.g. live sporting events broadcast.

In the case of CANAL + there is no such thing, and in the moment you can create up to 10 profiles in the service, and playback will be possible on two devices at once. The only limitation is that you can be logged in on five devices at the same time, but logging in to the next one only means that you must re-enter the password on the most-used one.


Original CANAL + functions

The new video on demand service on the Polish market really combines two models of access to content : a library from which you can choose movies, series and other programs to watch at your chosen date and broadcasts from live channels. All this is done from the level of the same interface, which got several unique features compared to the competition:

  • TimeShift - the ability to undo live broadcasts, pause and return to live playback;
  • Start-over - option to start playing the material from the beginning without having to manually go backwards;
  • Backward EPG - a feature that allows you to play selected programs that are not part of the catalog on request up to 14 days after they are broadcast on TV, including directly from the player.

You can also choose the audio track and subtitle language, and the selection is remembered between sessions. Also logged is information about what we are watching, which feeds the CANAL + recommendation engine combining algorithms and content selected by the editors. Added to this is the synchronization of progress between devices with the option of removing unwanted items, which is not at all an industry standard.


Quo Vadis, CANAL +?

The service in the Polish language version is officially available in our country only from last week and not all functions were delivered by the creators on time. In the next versions, we also expect support for user profiles, and in a slightly further future - a decoder based on this Android TV system with the manufacturer's launcher dedicated to this offer.

Thanks to this Google overlay, the user experience in a decoder dedicated to the new Internet offer will be similar to what CANAL + offers on other platforms. It is worth mentioning that this equipment will receive DVB-T2 digital terrestrial television and will be adapted to display content in 4K resolution with HDR support.

The package increasing the resolution to 4K and giving HDR support should appear soon.

Currently, content can be viewed in a maximum resolution of Full HD, but the quality of the stream depends on the bandwidth and stability of the internet connection. There are several quality profiles that differ in bitrates. For browser playback, these are 0.4 Mb / s, 0.6 Mb / s, 1 Mb / s, 2 Mb / s, 4 Mb / s and 6 Mb / s and they change dynamically depending on the conditions.


When it comes to data consumption, when playing content in the highest Full HD profile, i.e. 6 Mb / s, it is about 2.7 GB per hour of played content. There are three quality settings in the CANAL + application - separately for streaming, separately for ... downloading data - the program allows you to save movies and series for offline playback. The user chooses what he prefers: better quality or smaller file size.

For 4K content, which will be available soon on the Android TV application, you will have to sacrifice up to 12 GB per hour of viewing and have a connection capacity of at least 25 Mbps. HDR, in turn, will be encoded in the HLG standard, and when it comes to sound, not all programs offer it, especially those with a TV pedigree, but CANAL + already supports 5.1 spatial audio.

Of the other extras that have already been announced, the Multi-live function is worth mentioning, i.e. watching several TV channels at once. It will please sports fans above all, and the Expert-mode function is currently being developed for them. During selected sporting events, it will show, in addition to the broadcast itself, e.g. current statistics or shots from additional cameras.

* The material was created in cooperation with CANAL +

CANAL + is not only exclusive movies and series. The applications themselves make me want to use this VOD


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