Apple unveiled an updated version of its popular Apple TV, the multimedia device that connects internet streaming services to televisions, in a much-anticipated event on Tuesday from its headquarters in Cupertino, California. The device is called Apple TV 4K and starts at $179.
Apple last updated the Apple TV in 2015, bringing along a more powerful processor and touch-sensitive remote with built-in Siri functionality.
The fifth-generation version of the box will offer 4K resolution streaming, allowing for sharper picture quality than existing models when paired with a 4K television.
The 4K model will also have HDR (high dynamic range) color capabilities, which means you’ll see brighter, richer colors when connected to an HDR-compatible TV.
Apple will be updating users’ purchased movies from HD to 4K at no cost.
Big content changes
Apple and its content providers are working to provide 4K across the platform to all the popular Apple TV applications, like Netflix, HBOGo and Hulu.
The big news, however, is that Apple will finally be bringing in Amazon original content to the platform, something that had hitherto been absent.
Apple TV will also expand its forays into live streaming, something for which Apple TVs have not been widely used. Various news networks and sports apps like ESPN will be offering notifications when new programs and games become available.
The merging of on-demand and live TV through over-the-top boxes like Apple TV appear to be the future, and updated hardware is another chance for Apple to push forward.
Despite speculation, loudly missing was Apple’s own content. The company has shown interest in getting into original content with shows like “Carpool Karaoke” and “Planet of the Apps” and is reported to be opening up its vault to furnish $1 billion towards more original programming over the next year.
The processor will be key
Apple TV’s new picture functions require more processing power, and Apple is using an upgraded, faster processor to deal with the fresh demands, the A10X processor, the same chip that’s in the iPad Pro.
A faster processor won’t just be a boon for better picture quality; it will also give Apple far more flexibility with what these devices can do. With more memory and power, Apple is more likely to be limited by its deal-making rather than its devices. Should something even newer and exciting come along in terms of the marriage of traditional and modern content, Apple’s powerful devices should be more than prepared.