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I'm surprised it took so long for your TV to update. Starz released a new app over a year or more ago for most devices, when they merged Encore by branding it StarzEncore. Comcast doesn't have an agreement with Starz for the new app. Comcast would rather you use their streaming app instead.
The O.P. most likely down-loaded the app before the changes. There is an old saying: "If it isn't broke, don't fix it."
I would assume the app has been working for him until Samsung's last update 1501 which down-loaded and installed 7/15/17. I would assume no programmer ever coded an update to the old app when it was supposed to go obsolete. Not hard to see with all the bugs in current apps taking way too long to be corrected.
I would say this customer got lucky.