“Apple’s TV app is getting a makeover, and just in time for its expansion to smart TVs and third-party streaming devices,” Ryan Christoffel reports for MacStories. “I’ve used Apple’s TV app as my primary video hub since it launched in late 2016, so I was eager to get my hands on the updated app. Fortunately, I didn’t have to wait long – an early version of the new TV app is available now as part of the iOS 12.3 and tvOS 12.3 beta releases.”

“Even in this early version of channels, the new TV feature delivers not only in providing an easier setup flow, but also in granting a better watching experience. Videos play directly in TV, which means they load faster than before, and they support the default tvOS and iOS video players, offering a consistent experience no matter what you’re watching,” Christoffel reports. “Another key channels feature is the ability to download any content offline on your iPhone and iPad… Unfortunately, but perhaps unsurprisingly, the ability to download videos offline is nowhere to be found on tvOS; it appears to be iOS-exclusive.”

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MacDailyNews Take: Thank the Apple TV storage limitations for that, we guess.

“The new app will be the exclusive home of Apple’s forthcoming TV+ service, so if you plan to check out the company’s original content, now’s a good time to get familiar with Apple’s app,” Christoffel reports. “Despite its defects – namely, no Netflix integration and limited channels options – I think it delivers the most compelling unified TV experience available today.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Even before the redesign and new additions, we’d begun to use the TV app more, as more content providers seemed to have been added, making the TV app actually useful in certain circumstances. For just one example: Finding live sports and and upcoming matches quickly.