“When Apple first launched the device it was a bit groundbreaking. Running a variant of iOS called tvOS, the device turned your TV into something akin to an iPhone, allowing you to download apps and interact with it much like you do an iOS device,” Grothaus writes. “Also, the Siri Remote was quite groundbreaking, not because it offered voice control (lots of devices did before the new Apple TV) but because of its unique touchpad input on the remote.”
“But while Apple has added new software features to the Apple TV (dark mode, improved Siri input) there are still several software and hardware features the Apple TV is lacking that keeps it from being a truly great device,” Grothaus writes. “With WWDC coming up in less than a month, hopefully Apple will announce at least some of these software improvements in the next tvOS–and then, this autumn, the hardware improvements. Here’s what we’d like to see…”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Yes, the Amazon Prime Video app is atop our wishlist, too, but two things Grothaus doesn’t mention are:
• The screaming need for 4K capability, and;
• A Siri Remote designed by someone who’s actually tested it before launch.
Of course, it’s not news that Apple is comically confused about television. Apple TV, from its amateurishly-designed Siri Remote to its UI to its more-laughable-every-day lack of 4K is a paragon of half-assery that we’ve covered extensively.
That said, we just bought several more Apple TV devices* as we’ve now all finally cut the cord. These Apple TV devices are on the fabled “Input 1” (the cable boxes are gone) but they are used well over 90% of the time to simply run the PlayStation Vue** app which, along with Netflix and Amazon Prime Video (we used those via the apps in our Sony 4K smart TVs as they stream in 4K which Apple TV cannot handle – plus there is no Amazon app for Apple TV) and a smattering of specialized subscriptions (MLB.TV, for example), have nicely replaced cable/satellite at a greatly reduced monthly cost.
Each of our Siri Remotes have been clad in $7.88 Akwox Remote Cases (we don’t use the supplied wrist straps) which allow us to immediately tell which side is up by touch, correcting one of Apple’s many Siri Remote design flaws***.
Now that Apple’s hired Amazon’s Fire TV head to run their Apple TV business, we hope to finally see things move and improve on the Apple TV front.
*We went with Apple TV units because they work the best with all of our other Apple devices (AirPlay, Remote app on iPad and Apple Watch, etcetera).
**Worst-named, but best-featured streaming TV service currently available
***With the Siri Remote, users can’t tell which end is up in a darkened room due to uniform rectangular shape. The remote is still too small, so it gets lost easily. All buttons are the same size and similarly smooth. Only the Siri button attempts to be different, but the slightness of its concavity is too subtle to matter; a raised dot on the button would have been much easier for users to feel. The tactile difference between the bottom of the remote vs. the upper Glass Touch surface is too subtle as well; this also leads to not being able to tell which end is up. A remote with a simple wedge shape (slightly thicker in depth at the bottom vs. the top), as opposed to a uniform slab, would have instantly communicated the proper orientation to the user.
Amazon’s Video app may finally arrive for Apple TV this summer – May 5, 2017
Apple TV trails Roku, Amazon FireTV and Google Chromecast with 5% of all U.S. households with WiFi – April 3, 2017
Apple hires Amazon’s Fire TV head to run Apple TV business – February 8, 2017
‘The Grand Tour’ smashes Amazon streaming record – November 22, 2016
Jeremy Clarkson confirms new post-Top Gear Amazon Prime show will be in 4K – November 20, 2015
Apple TV and the 4K Ultra HD conundrum – October 8, 2015
Amazon unveils $100 Fire TV box 4K video support, Alexa voice control – September 17, 2015
Apple made ‘audacious bid’ for Top Gear trio of Clarkson, Hammond and May, but lost out to Bezos’ Amazon – September 1, 2015
Apple’s move into content creation could devastate Netflix and Amazon
Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Why would Apple want to make their own movies and TV shows? – September 1, 2015
Apple exploring entry into original entertainment production – August 31, 2015
Top Gear’s Clarkson, Hammond and May sign with Amazon Prime for new show to debut in 2016 – July 30, 2015