Category Archives: Technology

VidAngel Policy: Can I watch VidAngel without filters?

As VidAngel has grown and reached a broader audience, a few new customers have begun asking if they can stream on VidAngel without filters. 

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The short answer is, unfortunately, NO.

The long answer is, VidAngel employs filters in compliance with current copyright law, but we believe in allowing our customers to watch movies however they want. If you want filters, VidAngel is your place to do it. If you want to watch without filters, we recommend one of these unfiltered streaming services:

Google Play Movies

Amazon Instant Video

Vudu

 

(or iTunes, which is not really streaming)

Thanks for using VidAngel!

Neal Harmon, CEO

 

Get FREE movies for LIFE! Help us find a tech team member!

We’re giving away a LIFETIME OF FREE MOVIES* to any VidAngel customer who guides us to an engineer that becomes a full-time member of VidAngel’s team* :

Step #1 – forward this link to your tech friends so they can see the positions available:
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/vidangel-growing-jedadiah-ashford

Step #2 – have your friend send their resume to liz@vidangel.com. Ask them to include your VidAngel account email address letting us know you referred them.

Step #3 – after we hire your friend, we’ll add your lifetime* of credit to your account. Don’t worry, your engineer friend gets unlimited free movies by joining our team.

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VidAngel company celebration when we met our goal last week (we’re months ahead of plan). We went to the theatre together on paid time 🙂 We won’t admit how many of us teared up watching “Inside Out”

And here’s a fun, true story, in poetry:

Once upon a time, far-far away,

an amazing USAA mobile programmer from Texas,
found a new website that he loved more than breakfast.

This new VidAngel customer named Jed,
watched movies with his family before bed.

Well, he found a little bug,
that he offered to help plug

And became VidAngel’s tech team leader instead 🙂

Meet Jed: He has an infamous list in the company named after him, that pretty much the entire company operates around. He also gets to watch all the movies he wants for FREE.

 

* Lifetime of movies means $10,000 of non-transferable, non-refundable VidAngel account credit (or 100 SD movie nights a year for the next 67 years!).  Joining Team VidAngel means that your referral joins the tech team and stays onboard for at least one year. We’ll give you one year of credit during the referred employee’s trial period.  (credit will be disbursed at $150 per year – no worries, we will send you all the details)

VidAngel Native iOS app for the iPhone or iPad or iPod Touch (beta)

UPDATE: 8/28/2015:   Our iOS app is live and in the App Store!   Download it now!

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We’re happy to announce our VidAngel beta iOS app! With the app, you can stream purchased movies and TV shows on your iPhone, iPad or iPod. You can also cast to your TV via your Chromecast or Apple TV (using AirPlay). We’re working with Apple to enable purchasing within our app, but currently you can stream only movies or TV shows already purchased on the VidAngel website.

(8/25 – You don’t need these directions anymore.  Simply go to the App Store and download our app)    Since the iOS app is in beta, we’ll need to add you to the beta group if you’d like to try it before it’s published in the App Store (it’s so much better than streaming via Safari because you can Chromecast and the player remembers where you were on AirPlay). Here are instructions on how to get VidAngel on your device:

  1. Send your Apple ID (It is an email address) to support@vidangel.com so that we can add you as a beta participant.
  2. Download Apple’s TestFlight app to your mobile device from the App Store.
  3. You will receive an email from Apple with a link to download the VidAngel app once you are added as a beta participant.
  4. Once you receive the beta invitation in email, click on the link provided by Apple and the TestFlight app will open with a button to download the VidAngel beta app.

Enjoy!

UPDATE:  Subtitles are fixed on all devices

Known issue: while subtitles are working with Chromecast, we’re working on a solution for Apple TV. We look forward to other feedback.

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American Sniper took down our servers tonight

504 Error: The demand for American Sniper has overloaded our systems momentarily. We are working to keep our servers up, but it is far more traffic than we have had for any previous New Release and way more than we expected for this weekend while still in Private Beta. Thank you for your patience as we work to keep things running and upgrade the servers for next week. If you are having problems viewing let us know and we can get you a credit so you can watch your movie later.

American Sniper and Bug Fixes

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We have had more requests for American Sniper than any other movie. We had it tagged in advance for the May 19th DVD/Blu-Ray release but the content publishing process for VidAngel is surprisingly time-consuming (took 12 hours for the first pass, which had mistakes).

We test the movies on Android, iOS, Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV, and desktop before allowing them to go live.

Because yesterday our hosting provider moved us to faster server infrastructure, but also changed our version of PHP without letting us know. These changes introduced bugs into our system.

We ended up having to make three passes to get it right (we found an issue on Chromecast, one missed profanity and a handful of partial profanities). We have a high standard of quality for new movies published on VidAngel. If we find a single missed profanity, we do not publish the movie.

As you can tell by the publish time of this post (2am), we worked around the clock to get this blockbuster to you properly reviewed and bug free.

There is a silver lining in the slightly tardy publishing of American Sniper. We also discovered through the process a bug that has been plaguing many users recently. It is the bug where only the VidAngel bumper shows up, but the movie never plays. We fixed the elusive bug.

Watch American Sniper in HD for $2 (with sell-back) now.

VidAngel Browser Player and Chromecast Player Updated

HDTVsWe have spent the last year teaching all our customers to use the Chrome browser and the VidAngel extension to filter their movies. We also incessantly taught people, wanting to watch VidAngel filtered movies on their HD televisions, to use the Chromecast “tab cast” feature instead of using the YouTube cast button. But with the launch of Angel HD, we opened up more options for getting filtered movies on the big screen — Roku, Apple TV, and a desktop player that was “Cast-Ready,” utilizing Chromecast’s native playback functionality instead of simply mirroring a Chrome tab.

Since this launch, there have been certain bugs that our beta invitees have continually reported: A) the browser player for Angel HD often stalls and never recovers, and B) Chromecast playback has sometimes been really choppy. We’ve discovered that problem B is actually an extension of problem A, as our users, trained to click on the tab cast button, were inadvertently bypassing our dedicated Chromecast player and ended up mirroring an already stalling desktop player to their Chromecast devices.

This hasn’t been a great experience, especially for a device designed to be drop-dead simple like the Chromecast. We’ve finally solved both these problems, leading to a much simpler and much more reliable experience for you on both your browser and your Chromecast. No more incessant stalls on your desktop, as we’ve rolled out a new player to ensure that when you choose to watch your movies on your PC or Mac you’ll get close to the same smooth, consistent playback you see on Roku, AppleTV, iPads, iPhones, and Android. What’s more, you can connect your browser playback to your Chromecast through both the Cast icon on the player as well as through directly clicking the extension icon — in other words, you won’t accidentally start a tab casting session, but will be able to launch the Chromecast direct player no matter where you click.

While we’ve lost lots of lost sleep solving these problems, we’re eager to get the new players out to you so both are available starting now. We hope that, whether you’re watching on your computer screen or leaning back on the couch, you enjoy the better playback experience.

 

VidAngel Roku App now has Search and PIN

set_top_boxesVidAngel private beta launched on Roku two weeks ago and it is already the favorite device for VidAngel users! In response to customer requests, we just added two new features to the app:

PIN for purchases – this means that if someone grabs the remote they will not be able to purchase a movie unless they know your passcode. Set up your PIN at vidangel.com/roku

Search – You can now search for your movies. This was an important update because our library of HD movies is growing rapidly.

The VidAngel Roku update will show up within 24 hours. To access the VidAngel update now, refresh your channels on your Roku by visiting:

Settings > System update or Settings > Player info and checking for an update.

Report on Fixes to VidAngel Private BETA

smartphones   Time for an update on our progress with the new VidAngel. The team has been furiously solving problems, and while it seems way too slow to us, we look at the issues we’ve solved over the past month and we are thrilled with how much ground we’ve covered!

If a problem you faced isn’t noted in here please comment below and ask us about it, there is a good chance we got it fixed, but forgot to put it in the this report:

set_top_boxesROKU 2, 3, AND STICK

  • VidAngel now works on Roku 2, 3, AND STICK
  • We fixed the stalling problem.
  • Sell-back no longer shows an error.
  • Roku 1 is not supported yet.
  • We are working on a parental password (expected next week)
  • We are also working on search for next week.

tabletsAPPLE TV, iPHONE, iPAD, iPOD

  • Moved from mirroring to airplay in HD using iPhone, iPad or iPod.
  • Created a quick how to video for Apple TV.
  • Purchased titles were not showing up in library on iPhone and iPad for up to 10 mins has been resolved.

CHROMECAST + NEXUS PLAYERHDTVs

  • We solved the white screen “brainfreeze” issue.
  • We created a how to video for Chromecast.
  • We have tested Nexus Player on VidAngel and it works! You can use it with Chromecast.

LAPTOP AND DESKTOP

We still haven’t got these running perfect but we made a few fixes.

  • We added an alternate player to use until we find out why our main player is freezing.
  • We solved the stalling problem in the alternate player

Thanks again for all of your patience and reporting these bugs to us! This has been a good start.

Better Customer Support

During our company meeting this morning, we reviewed the state of customer feedback and everyone made it really clear we have a few things we can improve on.

We are making a TON of changes and you need updates on known bugs and when we are fixing them. Too much has been falling through the cracks. You have been wonderful in sending us feedback on  after-movie-surveys, blog comments, movie comments, filter feedback, twitter feeds, Facebook posts and the support email.  Unfortunately those all went to different places and with our little team we weren’t able to keep up with all the comments. Some people had to wait a long time for support to respond. For this we are sorry and we will do better.

Today we decided we’d had enough and spent a day to integrate all forms of communication into ONE system. Now your comments on our blog, your feedback on the filters and all other communication will be tracked, followed-up on, and measured for your satisfaction so that we know how we’re doing.

Here’s a report on how the last week has gone with the new system test. We’ll follow up in March to see how we’re improving.

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MARCH UPDATE: Our numbers for resolving problems got better in March, however our Average first reply time got three hours worse (this is because we went back and contacted a bunch of customers from the last 12 months who were interested in the Roku and going back months threw our numbers out of wack).

The ratio of Awesome and OK Replies to Bad Replies went from 12 to 1 to 13.5 to 1. That’s a little bit of improvement. However, the best news is that the number of tickets to the number of movies watched is dropping. This means more people are getting an experience where they don’t need to contact support. We will keep at it and report on April results as well. Thanks to our customers for helping us improve the private beta program.

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VidAngel Now Works In HD On Chromecast and Apple TV! Here Is How It Works.

FINALLY! One year after launching VidAngel we now have crystal clear HD movies on Chromecast and Apple TV. It is called Angel HD. Roku and Amazon Fire TV are coming soon!

How To Use VidAngel On Chromecast

credit: the verge

How To Use VidAngel On Apple TV

Note: Angel HD is currently in BETA. If you don't have access yet, just be patient. You will get an invite in the coming weeks.