Have you ever sat there on your couch, gazing into your big screen TV and wondered what it would be like to watch that same cable TV programming on the tiny screen of your smartphone instead? With so many people cutting the cord and opting for alternative services like Netflix instead, Shaw Communications has now decided to embrace the mobile world with its new FreeRange TV mobile app.

In effect, the FreeRange TV app lets you take your Shaw cable subscription with you on the go, watching your favorite cable TV programs from your smartphone, tablet or other mobile device. After deciding to buy Wind Mobile for $1.6 billion, I guess Shaw is much more interested in catering to people on their smartphones too and letting them watch TV on the go is one way to do that. It’s also one way to help reduce customer “churn.”

The FreeRange TV app was developed in partnership with Comcast, using network technology from the folks at Cisco.

In addition to streaming your cable TV content, the FreeRange TV app can also download shows for watching offline. You’re restricted to five devices, each of which can store up to 10 titles at a time for a period of 30 days. At launch, the download feature will only work with children’s shows, but they plan on expanding that throughout the rest of the year.

FreeRange also integrates with Shomi, so all episodes of the same show are collected together rather than requiring customers to bounce between apps. That’s somewhat similar to what we’re seeing from Roku, except within the Shaw ecosystem.


To get a closer look at how all of this is going to work, have a look at the brief demo video put up by Gillian Shaw at The Province.

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