Apple TV and iOS gain unified television experience with new 'TV' app

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited October 2016
Aiming to make it easier to find content across a range of services and apps, Apple on Thursday unveiled 'TV,' a new application for tvOS and iOS that allows users to browse and search for content in one convenient place. It will arrive for free in December.




"It will completely change how you watch TV with your Apple TV, as well as with your iPhone and iPad," Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said.

A "Watch Now" pane gives curated top picks that users can browse. Once a show has been viewed, it's added to an "Up Next" queue to make it easy to pick up where you left off with a series. Progress is synced across Apple devices.




Rented or owned content is available in a "Library" tab. A "Store" section lets people hunt for new material across services, and a "Recommended" tab will push curated and trending video, with categories and genres.

Apple's new TV app also integrates with Siri. In an onstage demonstration, a user was shown asking Siri to play "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," and an episode immediately began to play, picking up at the exact point where the user last left off.




Siri has also gained support for live TV, allowing users to ask to tune into programming on demand. In another onstage example, Siri was used to watch a Saturday college football game in progress, and to switch between other games being played.




Apple's new "TV" app will be available for free with a software update for tvOS and iOS. An integral part of this will be long-delayed single sign-on support for the Apple TV, also coming in December.


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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 40
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,449member
    I'm using most of these features on an unlocked Roku device at a place I"m staying, and while this improves on it in some respects, it mostly limits the user to the same cumbersome interface. But it's definitely a step forward ...
    80s_Apple_Guy
  • Reply 2 of 40
    davendaven Posts: 544member
    sog35 said:
    This is worthless if your cable company does not allow streaming on devices (Time Warner/Charter communications)
    I have Charter cable internet and can stream on my devices. What are you talking about?
    jahbladenolamacguylolliver
  • Reply 3 of 40
    I seriously doubt we'll ever see this in New Zealand.

    How long have TV Shows been available in iTunes? All that time and New Zealand still does not have access to them.

    This needs to change. We have Netflix (although hobbled at the moment) but I really want TV Shows available in iTunes.

    Maybe this app is going to fix this and give us what we want but I'm not holding my breath.
  • Reply 4 of 40
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,980member
    sog35 said:
    daven said:
    sog35 said:
    This is worthless if your cable company does not allow streaming on devices (Time Warner/Charter communications)
    I have Charter cable internet and can stream on my devices. What are you talking about?
    I'm with Time Warner which was purchased by Charter. With Time Warner I can't stream live TV.  Only a few channels. 

    Hope this changes once Charter takes over 100%
    Not true. You can stream live TV except the sport events.
    sockrolidlolliver
  • Reply 5 of 40
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,614member
    Ca't you just get lowededwookie said:
    I seriously doubt we'll ever see this in New Zealand.

    How long have TV Shows been available in iTunes? All that time and New Zealand still does not have access to them.

    This needs to change. We have Netflix (although hobbled at the moment) but I really want TV Shows available in iTunes.

    Maybe this app is going to fix this and give us what we want but I'm not holding my breath.
    a US iTunes Account? It is a bit of a pain to get the gift cards (don't buy on eBay), but if you have a friend in the US who can help you it is pretty straight forward.
    lolliver
  • Reply 6 of 40
    NY1822NY1822 Posts: 601member
    Can someone clarify this for me....the way I am reading this is:
    It's not streaming all your channels of your cable provider, just the ones that have apps on Apple TV.
    I have Cablevision (Optimum), and with the Optimum App you can stream prob about 85% of the channels I am paying for. (about 70% of those channels I can stream with the Optimum App DO NOT have Apple TV apps)
    Some of the comments have me doubting my take.
    edited October 2016
  • Reply 7 of 40
    linkmanlinkman Posts: 929member
    It would be nice to have a unified content browser that allows one to view all available media, even if it is not available on just the device doing the browsing. For example, you can have content from your cable TV subscription, OTA, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, free streaming sources, home DVR, Sling, iTunes, DVDs, BluRays, Playstation, etc. Let's say I'd like to watch Star Trek II:The Wrath Of Khan -- I bring up the app and I can see that I've cataloged it as one of my DVDs, it's available on Netflix, I can purchase rentals or buy downloadable versions on iTunes and Amazon, and it's coming up on my cable TV in 3 hours.

    The reality right now is that I have to look through potentially dozens of sources to find what I want.
    laytech
  • Reply 8 of 40
    So the suggested solution for New Zealand is to fraudulently by-pass the system eh. I am English but I live in France and I have a 3rd gen. Apple TV registered as being in France in the French time zone but with text in English. At present most of the "available TV" content is outside France and some outside Europe. Perhaps someone could tell me why, oh why, Apple cannot tailor the displayed apps to the location of the Apple TV, because you CANNOT use them due to geolocation - might I suggest that it could end up removing most of the TV apps and make that aspect of Apple TV look fairly thin?? I suppose paxman might suggest a way of circumventing by using a proxy server, is that actually legal and is it Apple policy to recommend it? I am of course open to any way this can be improved by what has just been launched by Apple - when and perhaps if it appears in Europe.
  • Reply 9 of 40
    mike1mike1 Posts: 1,926member
    NY1822 said:
    Can someone clarify this for me....the way I am reading this is:
    It's not streaming all your channels of your cable provider, just the ones that have apps on Apple TV.
    I have Cablevision (Optimum), and with the Optimum App you can stream prob about 85% of the channels I am paying for. (about 70% of those channels I can stream with the Optimum App DO NOT have Apple TV apps)
    Some of the comments have me doubting my take.
    Actually, with the Optimum App, you can stream ALL of the channels you pay for as long as you are on your home network. Which is exactly where my ATV always is. So, if Cablevision came out with a TVOS app that tied into this, (Maybe they have. I own an ATV3) it would definitely be a compelling reason to upgrade to an ATV4.
  • Reply 10 of 40
    sockrolidsockrolid Posts: 2,788member
    And so it begins.  Apple is moving beyond the concepts of "networks" and "channels".
    I don't care whether Mr. Robot is created by HBO or USA Network.
    I just want to binge the series or catch the latest episode if I'm current.

    A side-effect of the de-branding of content is that I also don't care which app delivers that content.
    HBO Now, Netflix, CBS, whatever.  Now I don't even need to interact with the apps themselves.
    And that means that the entire "download apps with icons that fill up your home screen" model is in jeopardy.
    Why bother downloading an app with an icon that takes up space on your home screen?
    Isn't it easier and better to simply subscribe to a content provider to get your shows?
    Why not just pay HBO for their content and present it through the  tv interface without an HBO app?

    Which leads us to the "Her"-like future of the OS being the sole interface.  
    ("Her", 2013 - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1798709/?ref_=nv_sr_4 )
    No more individual apps with customized interfaces to learn.  Just services the user subscribes to.
    All content funneled through the OS and whatever presentation device it running on at the moment.

    So.  App designers.  Time to think about your next career move.
    Your Photoshop skills may not be needed for much longer, at least with respect to  tv.
    And maybe not for much longer with respect to iOS / watchOS either.
    ronnnolamacguylolliverwilliamlondonlibertyforall
  • Reply 11 of 40
    qwweraqwwera Posts: 280member
    I still like the way chromecast works.  Just open you app and hit play. Why a middleman app interface?
  • Reply 12 of 40
    The way I interpreted it, the TV app is a dashboard of sorts that keeps track of all the apps you're using to stream content on your Apple TV. So instead of looking through Hulu, Netflix, HBO Now and Showtime Now (and the others) to find that series that you want to resume watching, just open TV app and it'll show all the series you've been watching whether on one of the other streaming apps or on iTunes, and you can just resume from within the TV app. It doesn't actually stream live TV. I was disappointed that an Amazon Video app was not announced...
    edited October 2016 calimike1
  • Reply 13 of 40
    I was pretty disappointed with this announcement, and I've been a fan of the potential for AppleTV for a while.

    Tim Cook says, "I can't imagine why you would need to use anything else to watch TV" (or something similar).  Well, Tim, let me list the reasons:

    1. No Netflix or Amazon Video - pretty big holes for a 'unified TV experience'.
    2. Library doesn't actually list anything in my library, only purchased content from iTunes.  If appropriately tagged, why can't I see all of the content that I have imported into iTunes.  So now, I have to go to 'My Computer' > 'Movies' and then browse that way.  Siri doesn't appear to be able to search there, either.  Incidentally, this is the same problem as the 'Music' app on AppleTV.
    3. No 4K - even if it did allow for Netflix and Amazon, if it doesn't do it in 4K, some of the appeal is lost.  I realize this is a small subset of users, but to omit 4K in 2016/2017 is just foolish.  More folks will be migrating to this resolution and other services don't seem to have any problem providing this service.
    4. No browsing what is on - this is a big deal for my wife.  If she can't just see her favorite channels (not all of which have an app), and it isn't as easy as turning on the TV and browsing the guide, then it is a non-starter.  

    Use case now:  Turn on TV, hopefully it is on the right input.  Open TV App.  Scroll to what's on now, wait, where are all the shows?  Not all are available.  Oh, forget it.
    qwwera80s_Apple_Guycalimike1libertyforall
  • Reply 14 of 40
    Next I would like to see a picture-in-picture option on AppleTV, where multiple channels (apps) simultaneously appear on the TV screen.
    lolliverlibertyforall
  • Reply 15 of 40
    My Mi Box is way better that the apple tv
  • Reply 16 of 40
    dachardachar Posts: 330member
    A new apple app for TV is hardly big news is it? The Apple TV presentation felt like  a waste of time, especially as the TV app will only work in the USA, at least for the near future. Apple could have made more impact if they reduced the presentation to 45 minutes and cut out all the filler.  This did not feel like an innovative company making us all go wow. 
  • Reply 17 of 40
    Four words from the TC screen

    "Starting in the US"


    Expect to wait 2 or 3 years before this appears in Asia if it ever does, making it a fairly useless announcement for MOST of Apple's customers.
    dachar
  • Reply 18 of 40
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,492member
    I was pretty disappointed with this announcement, and I've been a fan of the potential for AppleTV for a while.

    Tim Cook says, "I can't imagine why you would need to use anything else to watch TV" (or something similar).  Well, Tim, let me list the reasons:

    1. No Netflix or Amazon Video - pretty big holes for a 'unified TV experience'.
    2. Library doesn't actually list anything in my library, only purchased content from iTunes.  If appropriately tagged, why can't I see all of the content that I have imported into iTunes.  So now, I have to go to 'My Computer' > 'Movies' and then browse that way.  Siri doesn't appear to be able to search there, either.  Incidentally, this is the same problem as the 'Music' app on AppleTV.
    3. No 4K - even if it did allow for Netflix and Amazon, if it doesn't do it in 4K, some of the appeal is lost.  I realize this is a small subset of users, but to omit 4K in 2016/2017 is just foolish.  More folks will be migrating to this resolution and other services don't seem to have any problem providing this service.
    4. No browsing what is on - this is a big deal for my wife.  If she can't just see her favorite channels (not all of which have an app), and it isn't as easy as turning on the TV and browsing the guide, then it is a non-starter.  

    Use case now:  Turn on TV, hopefully it is on the right input.  Open TV App.  Scroll to what's on now, wait, where are all the shows?  Not all are available.  Oh, forget it.
    It's a step in the right direction. ATV was a hobby for so long, and they have a lot of catching up to do.

    1. You won't ever see an Amazon Video app. Amazon does not wish to play. I thought there was a Netflix app, but I'm not a user of the service, so I might be (probably am) wrong.
    2. It isn't clear this solves that issue. I don't use Siri, so it is a small inconvenience (to me.)
    3. 4K video discussion. No comment.
    4. I'm curious about this, and hope the Channels/HDHomeRun people are able to offer an OTA link option. I can switch between inputs on my TV, but the Channels app looks pretty slick, and I'm pondering springing for the HDHomeRun box to try it. If ATV had TV tuners in it, and added a coax antenna jack...wow. HDHomeRun has multiple tuners in it, so it direct supports PIP on OTA signals. But...about $200 for the box and apps. 

    calimathieuwelschapplepieguy
  • Reply 19 of 40
    qwweraqwwera Posts: 280member
    sog35 said:
    qwwera said:
    I still like the way chromecast works.  Just open you app and hit play. Why a middleman app interface?
    so Google can spy on every single thing you watch?
    Couldn't Apple just do the same thing, offer an easy to install dongle and be done? I don't understand all this extra complexity. Just hit Netflix and watch Netflix to wherever screen you want yo see it in.
  • Reply 20 of 40

    So Apple has now introduced an App to access and use Apps. How innovative another layer to click though instead of just opening to it. Am I missing something? really miss the days of Apple's simple clean ultra useable Mac OS's

    qwwerapalomine
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