I’ve been using an Apple TV for the past two years, like most people who’ve ditched their cable box for online streaming. No stranger to its limited functionality and frustrating navigation, I’ve been waiting for something bigger to come from Apple.
So when Apple announced its fourth generation Apple TV this week, I couldn’t wait to see what is in store for the next generation of online streaming. After seeing the demo, I knew I needed the newest version. Here’s why:
1. Fix All Search Frustrations with Siri
Apple TV has a new remote with voice activated capabilities, sending Siri to the rescue. This new control will be most valuable for browsing content. You can ask something like, “Show me new documentaries,” and Siri will present a compiled list, including content from multiple apps without navigating away from your current screen. Or search for your favorite actor, and all of his movies will show.
On current models, searches are isolated within single apps like Netflix and YouTube and are fulfilled by spelling out a query one letter at a time, an extremely frustrating and time-consuming process. Siri will easily fix that experience.
2. Explore Endless Possibilities with TV’s First App Store
Along with the device, Apple released its new platform for developers: tvOS. Developers can now start building apps for consumers to download from the TV’s new App Store. As Apple demonstrated, apps can range from classic content providers like network TV channels and Hulu to interactive experiences like online shopping and home-buying.
3. Game with Friends
The combination of a new motion-sensing remote and a new app platform adds an entirely new feature to the Apple TV: gaming. While the TV only includes one remote, most games will offer multiplayer options simply by connecting an iPhone. This is pretty cool, because now my friends and I can easily download and play a game together without ever leaving our seats to get new controls. All a player needs is an iPhone or iPod Touch.
4. Subsidize the Price by Trading-in an Old Apple TV
Here’s the cherry on the cake: my new Apple TV won’t cost $149. Because Gazelle buys Apple TVs, I can trade-in my old one and get cash towards the new: as much as $42.
Will you be buying the new Apple TV?
Image courtesy of the Apple Special Event.