I subscribe to a lot of streaming services. Probably too many, if we’re honest. From staples like Netflix and Amazon Prime to Disney+ and HBO Max, they are basically all there. Each one has its own shows and features, but generally speaking, the user experience is similar.
That said, I recently signed up for a trial for the new Paramount+ streaming service, and let me tell you, it’s a mess in my experience. I’ve been using the Vizio app as well as the desktop version, and both have issues. That said, the app is far and away worse than the desktop version.
Let’s start with the most glaring issue – app crashes. Occasionally, the app just crashes and goes back to the main screen. For me, it seems to happen more when fast-forwarding and rewinding, but sometimes it just happens randomly. Also, episodes don’t always auto-play the next episode and just snags on the final scene of the credits. Trying to fast-forward to force the skip will sometimes lead to app crashes.
These issues are not present on the desktop version of the streaming service, however. Also, for what it’s worth, Joe has not really experienced these issues streaming Paramount+ through Roku.
Past app crashes, just basic features found in most streaming services are not present with this offering. For one, there is no watch list. So good luck trying to remember that show you passed by earlier that you thought looked interesting. Also, the only way to select episodes is by finding the actual show-listing and not the listing in your Keep Watching list.
Finally, I want to touch on the absolutely abysmal search function found in Paramount+. Good luck searching for an actor, as the results are extremely hit-or-miss. For example, searching “Patrick Stewart” brings up Picard but doesn’t bring up Star Trek: The Next Generation.
The app hiccups can be somewhat forgiven because it is new, but the lack of basic functionality like watch lists and a half-baked search is unacceptable.