There are some major new changes coming to Apple TV that have just been announced at Apple’s WWDC keynote in San Francisco. For those of you who are eager for improvements to tvOS, they’re coming.
New Remote App
Apple kicked off the tvOS announcement with some numbers that are rather impressive. Firstly, in the mere seven months that tvOS has been available, there are 1300 video channels and over 6000 native apps that are specifically for tvOS. But one of the biggest requests from customers has been a new Apple TV remote app for iOS that would make controlling the Apple TV even easier.
The new iOS app will be available on iOS for iPhone and iPad. The Remote app lets users turn their iOS device into a remote that has the same exact capabilities as the Siri remote. It will use touch, voice to control Siri, and even gyroscopic motion controls for games. And of course, you can enter text in with the keyboard.
Speaking of Siri, there have been some significant new changes to Siri on the Apple TV.
Users will now be able to search for movies by topics. It’s similar to how we ask Siri to find television shows, because now you can just say “find high school comedies from the ‘80s” and Siri will give you results instantly.
Additionally, while Siri has been able to search through 650,000 movies and television shows, it will now be able to search YouTube as well. Just ask Siri something like “Steph Curry’s three pointers” and it will bring up the YouTube app with complete search results.
Another great new ability of Siri is the ability to tune you in to live television instantly with the new Live Tune-In feature. Just say something like “Watch ESPN2” and the app will instantly pop open and show you what’s on right now.
The problem with all of the network and live TV apps is the fact that you have to always sign on with your credentials for each one and then activate it. It’s a hassle and bogs down the experience. But now your problems will be solved with the Single Sign-On feature.
With Single sign-on, you just sign in once on your Apple TV with your cable account credentials and you’ll get access to all network TV apps. And tvOS will show you all available network TV apps that you can access with your single sign-on account, so the legwork is done for you. This feature will also work on iOS.
Some smaller improvements to tvOS include Dark Mode when you are in a home theater type setting, and now apps will be automatically downloaded on your Apple TV when you get them on iOS. New upcoming apps include Sling TV, Fox Sports Go, and Molotov.
Apple also announced new developer APIs for tvOS, which include ReplayKit, PhotoKit, and HomeKit.
When Can You Get It?
The new version of tvOS will be made available for all Apple TV customers this fall for free.