Is this Apple’s plan for Apple TV?

“I am no fan of Apple TV, at least not anymore. I did find my third-generation model indispensable, but basically for one reason, and that was Netflix,” Gene Steinberg writes for The Tech Night Owl. “I did not acquire the fourth-generation version because it not only lacked 4K, but I wasn’t overwhelmed by the new features. Having Siri help me find the programming I already knew about wasn’t important. The available games and other apps weren’t impressive either.”

“I haven’t used my Apple TV in more than three months. The reason is explained by the growing number of sets with increasingly usable smart features, in which you can access some streaming apps via the sets themselves. On 4K sets, at least some offer HDR on subset of apps, so there’s no fighting the HDR wars. You have no need of an accessory set-top box,” Steinberg writes. “It didn’t take long to notice that my Apple TV sat unused. I briefly wondered about the 4K version, but why? The services I used, such as they were, came with the set. Although Apple’s user interfaces for TV apps were supposed to be a big deal, the ones provided with SmartCast were just fine.”

“Does Apple have an end game? What about original TV content? But it doesn’t seem likely it’ll be restricted to Apple TV, considering the rest of the ecosystem reaches hundreds of millions of users,” Steinberg writes. “So what’s the end game for Apple TV? If iOS is matching or exceeding the power of a dedicated gaming console, how long will it take for similar processing power to appear on an Apple TV? With the proper gaming controllers, would Apple TV thus reach a point where it is fully competitive with those consoles? Is that part of Apple’s goal of boosting its importance and sales?”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We use Apple TV because we’re all-in on the Apple ecosystem. We could easily use other boxes, dongles, and/or apps on our TVs. If Apple is concerned with moving Apple TV hardware (we’re not convinced they are; they may be more interested in subscriptions to video content), then they’ll tie some or all of their forthcoming high-end TV series to Apple TV. If not, they’ll simply offer their productions more widely and look to sign up subscribers for their new original TV series content. We should know soon enough, by September/October of this year at the latest.

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  1. I don’t mind Apple TV, but my wife absolutely hates the remote (which I can fully understand). I do wish they would make a smaller plug in device, a powered stick like Roku or Amazon.

    I think Apple would make a lot more money making their own Smart App for all smart TVs. They would lose the hardware fees but open up to a bigger universe of subscribers. They could tie in Apple Music too.

  2. Sure, a lot of TVs are “smart” these days and have built in streaming. But nearly all of them run Android, so Google can watch what you watch. I admit that I have an Android powered 4K TV but I don’t use the smart features for that very reason. I prefer Apple’s box. And the newer remote is an improvement over the original.

    1. And the interface, usually Java…sucks ass in comparison. The Amazon “app” on my Samsung is nearly unusable and reliably starts skipping the audio till it’s totally out of sync. Aside from the rich’s the interface that really sets the Apple TV apart. I can stand lag.

    2. I completely agree with you, we have a Sony tv with the Android os and it has been buggy from day one. It still crashes even after numerous updates over the last 2 yrs and I really don’t care for the interface. I tried to stick with using the Android Tv os but just gave up and now I only use my PS4 or Apple 4K tv, which I snagged for $105 through the Direct Tv now offer. Because I’m in Apple’s eco system I like using the airplay which I can’t do on the PS4 and this was limited with Android OS. I hope Apple expands on what they’ve started with the Apple Tv. I also personally like the remote app on my iphone for ATV, it’s simple but has worked decently so far.

  3. So why doesn’t he get the Apple TV 4K?
    If the remote is really that bad, just use an iPhone (granted, not that convenient).
    Here’s hoping HomePod becomes an ATV controller before too much longer.

    1. When Apple starts broadcasting original content two things will have happened:

      1/. HomePods (love mine) will be able to sync, providing the best stereo “sounder” on the planet.

      2/ Purchased (rented) iTunes content already plays through the HomePod. Original content will split audio and video signals at the Apple TV, with video going to the TV and audio (stereo) going to the HomePod. HomePods ability to dynamically separate sound will create the sense of multi-channel (more than 2) sound for added realism on a scale others won’t be able to duplicate.

      1. With all due respect:

        1) speculation on your part, and almost certainly untrue if one already has invested in a home cinema system

        2) the world is awash in content. Apple’s continued wilderness walking to figure out how to lash in customers to a subscription is a fruitless adventure so far. Technically there is absolutely nothing Apple TV can do that competitors can’t do just as well, for less money, and often with a better interface and remote. Same thing with sound. Only if you are willing to constrain yourself to Try Again Siri Apple Music Rental Jukebox Tunage With Explicit Lyrics Popping Up When Kids Are Home, you can do much better by objectively shopping all possible systems and buying the brands and models that works best. Homepod does not work best for managing an existing collection and certainly not for home cinema by a long shot.

        Of course, objective reality has no place on a site where advertising whatever Apple’s latest gadget is is a full time profession. If the Homepod was ready for prime time, which it isn’t, then lets talk. As it is now, you wish it offered stereo and proper user control. It doesn’t, and neither does Apple TV after 4 generations, so keep dreaming.

  4. The simple fact that after a day of skiing with the kids, laying on the couch looking at our photos and video effortless from the iphone and ipods (yes my girls have ipods), it became a natural habit and a joyful moment.

    Yes, we are all Apple in the house and it does ease a lot of tech/media process for us. We are not big television fans… We can’t stand too long looking at other people living without feeling the urge to live ourself and be the center of our movies and slide shows. Pretty narcissistic. LOL

  5. I loved my 3rd Get AppleTV. When the 4th Gen came out I bought it, only to find that it wouldn’t play half of my .mp4 media files. I took it back and waited. When the 4th Gen 4K came out I bought it, think that Apple surely had fixed the problem. Not. So now I am in the process of re-encoding half my .mp4 media files just so I can use the AppleTV 4K. Now here is the kicker. All this files that won’t play through Apple’s interface on the AppeTV 4K WILL play through the Plex app on the very same AppleTV 4K! Where is Steve Jobs when you need him? He would have NEVER let this incomplete product out the door until it played every file the 3rd Gen AppeTV played with no problem.

  6. I use my Mac.
    In my bedroom I have a 32″ UHD monitor and it works very well as a TV for DIRECTVNOW and iTunes content (my DVDs & BluRays are ripped into iTunes).

    The Apple TV is mostly when people are over for a game a movie or something. Otherwise, it gets little use.

  7. I’ve seen perfectly good TV’s require an external device because no update was available for the built-in apps.

    But a new cool feature for me is the ability for the Apple TV to use my AirPods so I can watch stuff at night without disturbing the wife.

  8. I think Apple should build an embeddable Apple TV that TV manufacturers can include with their smart TVs? Even though Apple wouldn’t collect the same price point as a stand alone device, they’d sell a lot more. They’d also spread the Apple brand and ecosystem farther. This would include a wider audience for the Apple content that they intend to produce.

  9. Worst thing about Apple TV is its fragmented, app based ui where each app is in its own ui universe. (Hey Apple , familarity and predictabilty= efficiency/ease of use )

    And then the biggy : absolute lack of capability to consolidate and centralize favorite programming and no notifications when a new content is availible. Messy !

    Navigating Apple Tv is a hunt to find favorites.. from one app to the other to the other…. ofcourse., that is if you remember where to look . …

    I use it , because im commited to Apple ecosys…. but its frustrating! add on top the damn unergonomic remote.. ( but i like siri and the touch pad ).
    Overall.. UI sucks. Imo

  10. I agree with the last part of what Gene Steinberg said. The iPads and iPhones are iOS devices like the Apple TV. Both the iPad and iPhone is very powerful to play some serious gaming. When is Apple going to take this power and put it in the Apple TV. The only reason I see that Apple will not do it is the price point of the Apple TV ( $149, $179 and $199) and with the extra power it may put it out of reach of some future users. But just think a minute, iOS and the hardware puts it on par of the Playstation 4, xbox 1S and defiantly the Nintendo Switch. Some of these great games that are out on the iPad and iPhone will then be able to be moved over to the Apple TV. Putting this power in the Apple TV and the Steel Series Nimbus ( or a controller that is more powerful) it can possibly put a hurt on the other consoles or even look at the Apple TV as a viable option

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