Response from Amazon support suggests tvOS app in development
Amazon may be preparing to ship an Instant Video app for the fourth-generation Apple TV before the end of the year, if a Twitter post is to be believed. Engineer Dan Bostonweeks claims to have been sent a response by the retailer, from a query via the Amazon Instant Video iOS app, stating development of the tvOS app is underway and could soon give Prime Instant Video subscribers another venue to watch Amazon-provided video streams.
Unique code displayed on Apple TV can be used to log in via Facebook accounts
Facebook is making it easier for developers to authenticate app users with the Apple TV, with a simplified login process. The Facebook SDK for tvOS beta will allow developers to use a confirmation code linked to a Facebook account for authentication purposes, instead of requiring users to enter a username or password on the Apple TV itself using the supplied remote control, potentially streamlining what could be a frustrating process for some users.
Apple expanding Apple TV App Store with five new categories
Apple's latest addition to the App Store family, the Apple TV App Store, is growing again. On Tuesday, the company added five new categories to the store, including Games, Education, Entertainment, Health & Fitness, Lifestyle, News, and Sports. The entire concept of categories in the store are new as of the beginning of this month, and are organized in the same manner as similar categories in the App Store or Mac App Store.
Wait a minute, how long have you been watching?
Yeah, we missed Off Topic last week - too much life in the way. Don't worry, there's still lots to talk about! Join Mike, Charles, and Jordan for a half an hour, jamming on topics that grabbed our attention outside of work this week. We talk about Fallout 4, hit on the Nintendo live event (and who thought of Linkle?). Charles and Mike discuss this season of Doctor Who, with a look at the possible future of the show.
Tech Talks return for Apple TV development in ten-city tour
Apple has revealed it is holding Tech Talks in a number of cities around the world, to help developers create apps for the fourth-generation Apple TV. Open to members of the Apple Developer Program, the talks are being held over the next few months from December onwards, with each session said to offer technical information on creating apps for tvOS, refined coding techniques, and other assistance from on-hand Apple experts.
Cue interview indicates wish for Apple TV to become a central content source
Apple is aiming to make it as easy as possible for consumers to pay and watch TV shows and channels the way they want to, according to comments made by Eddy Cue during an interview. Extra footage from Cue's interview with CNN Money has been published, with Cue seemingly indicating that Apple is more interested in providing customers what they want with existing providers than launching its own long-rumored TV service.
Code hack revealed hidden charts earlier, rankings confirmed
A few days after our report on a hidden "Top Charts" feature in the tvOS App Store that was discovered by a gaming site, Apple has now turned the feature on -- one of several seen to be missing from the initial shipping version of tvOS for the new Apple TV. Other missing features from the store, such as browsing for non-featured apps, remained unfixed thus far. The initial revelation that the charts existed and were just not shown also revealed that games dominated the paid charts, while TV apps ruled the free listings.
Beta version for new Apple TV requires USB-C to USB-A adapter
On Tuesday, Apple released new developer betas of OS X 10.11.2 and iOS 9.2 (both the second betas to be released), as well as a first beta of tvOS, which is presumably numbered v9.1. The new iOS beta comes two weeks after the initial public release of iOS 9.1, and one week after the first beta. The OS X beta, build 15C31f does not mark any changes but continues to ask developers to focus on several key areas. The tvOS beta will require developers to have a new Apple TV as well as USB-C to USB-A adapter in order to install it from a Mac -- the Apple TV itself has no downloading capability for beta releases.
Streamer allows for playback of served media from computer or NAS
Late yesterday, and as promised, the Plex media streaming app was made available for the new Apple TV. The combination server and Apple TV app were developed by the same team that created the Apple TV hack for a jailbroken device, and utilizes both the iOS app codebase as well as implementation of new technologies.
Exclusives Beat Sports, Rayman Adventures top paid, free charts in new store
A gaming blog has uncovered a currently-hidden feature in the tvOS App Store for the new Apple TV that reveals the top 10 paid and free apps, despite the fact that such information is not available on the Apple TV App Store itself. The fact that Apple does maintain such information suggests that the feature will become available in time; the tvOS App Store is still in a nascent stage that doesn't even allow browsing or search for apps not featured on the main page. The revelation of the charts shows that games dominate the paid charts, while TV apps dominate the free listings.
Apple TV app denied entry to App Store over hacking tuition videos
A hacking collective is complaining that Apple has rejected its app from the app store, potentially as retaliation for previous iOS hacks by its researchers. The Chaos Computer Club's app was intended for people unable to attend the Chaos Communications Congress in Germany to view streams of security talks at the event, with Apple allegedly using revelations of iOS issues at previous events as an excuse to ban the organization's Apple TV app.
Our initial impressions with Apple's new set top box in our living room
If it's October, it must be pumpkin spice everything time, and Apple release season. Unsurprisingly (given the preponderance of rumors) Apple released a new version of the Apple TV this year, and it started shipping today. This new generation of Apple TV doesn't yet have a unified TV subscription service, but it does have Apple's A8 processor, and a new TV-specific app ecosystem. We gave it to our resident Apple TV fiend to beat on in his living room -- read on for his first impressions of the new set top.
Staples Bugdom 2, Nanosaur 2 see release today on Apple's set top
Veteran OS X and iOS developers Pangea Software has announced their game catalog for tvOS. Pangea Software titles Bugdom 2, Nanosaur 2, Nucleus, Otto Matic, and Air Wings are all seeing release for Apple's new set top today.
Retailer follows through with warning for competing streaming devices
Amazon has followed through with its warning from earlier this month that it would be taking down store listings for devices that do not support Amazon Prime Video, by removing devices from Apple and Google. The Apple TV and Google Chromecast no longer appear in searches on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk, with the first result coming up for each of the products searched being Amazon's own Fire TV Stick instead.
Apple Music control, music searches among 'missing' features in new ATV
In a new interview with CNN Money, Apple's SVP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue revealed that the shipping fourth-generation Apple TV will have some additional features added to it after its debut next week. While most early reviews of the device have been positive, reviewers have noticed some strange omissions, such the Siri remote control being unable to control the Apple Music portion of iTunes. Siri on iOS devices has recently been found to defer music chart searches to those users subscribed to Apple Music.
BBC bringing iPlayer streaming app to fourth-generation Apple TV
The BBC has confirmed it is bringing iPlayer to the new Apple TV in the future, but not at the set-top box's launch. The popular on-demand video streaming service, which allows viewers in the United Kingdom to watch missed content from the broadcaster's collection of TV channels and radio stations, will be arriving on the fourth-generation Apple TV in the coming months according to BBC director-general Tony Hall.
Apple online buyers may get units ahead of official launch
Electronics chain Best Buy has opened pre-orders for the latest version of Apple TV, and in so doing leaked an official launch date: November 4. The company says that units will be available to purchase in-store starting from that day, although Apple has not made a similar announcement for its own stores yet. Customers who can now pre-order the new Apple TV online and choose expedited shipping may receive the new units as early as October 30, however.
Fourth iteration of the Apple TV brings A8 processor, apps to a television
Preorders for both models of the fourth generation Apple TV have commenced. The major revision to the line, which now includes a sought-after app ecosystem for the device, retails for $149 for the 32GB version, with the 64 GB version selling for $199. Shipments for the Apple TV begin on October 30.
Submissions of tvOS apps open ahead of fourth-generation Apple TV release
Apple has started to accept app submissions for tvOS, the operating system that runs on the upcoming fourth-generation Apple TV. Following after the golden master of tvOS being delivered to developers for testing ahead of next week's release of the set-top box, developers are now being invited to submit their creations to the tvOS App Store, with Apple also providing extra guidance on how to prepare apps for the device.
Apple's set-top box gains NBC, CBS All Access, M2M channels
Apple has added three new channels to its Apple TV lineup as of Tuesday, with NBC, CBS All Access and speciality channel Made to Measure (M2M) joining the list. NBC's channel is a debut for the veteran network apart from its previous sports-only channel. Only some content will be available on the channel without a cable subscription authentication, as with CBS All Access -- the latter of which offers access to some 7,500 episodes on demand as well as new episodes. M2M is a fashion-oriented channel, and is exclusive to Apple TV.
CEO announces membership in group aiming to help China go green
In an interview on stage the Wall Street Journal's WSJD Live conference, Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed that Apple Music currently has 6.5 million paid subscribers, with another 8.5 million currently enjoying their three-month free trial. He also noted that the new-generation Apple TV would go on sale on Monday, October 26, with shipments beginning this Friday. While interviewer and WSJ Editor Gerard Baker was unable to get any information on future projects out of Cook, they did cover a number of other topics.
Store services down currently, no cause of downtime offered
[Update: outage has ended] Some of Apple's online services are down, for at least some users, in a prolonged attack that started around 8:30PM Pacific Time on Wednesday and is currently ongoing. Prior to that, 0.6 percent of iCloud users were cut off from iCloud Tabs and iCloud Keychain services for about an hour and 45 minutes, beginning around 7PM PT. At the time of writing, Apple's System Status page shows the App Store, Apple TV, the iBookstore, iTunes Store, Mac App Store and Volume Purchase Program are either slow or down entirely for some percentage of users.
Search will delineate which is free content, be opened to more apps
With an "end of October" release date for the new Apple TV rapidly approaching, Apple is giving developers a bit of a helping hand. Apple CEO Tim Cook recently said that while initially, universal search will be limited to HBO, Hulu, iTunes, Netflix, and Showtime, it will be opened up to coders soon. Additionally, the company has very recently shipped another wave of early Apple TV units to developers, giving more companies the ability to be ready when the device ships to the public.
October 29 end date of sales for media streamers that don't support Prime
Amazon resellers are reportedly receiving an email from Amazon, telling them that video streaming devices that don't support Amazon Prime Video won't be sold on the commerce giant's marketplace. If the reports are accurate, the Apple TV line, as well as Google's Chromecast, will be barred from sale after October 29.
Company violated terms, Apple closed developer account
Teardown and repair site iFixit, best known for their examinations of Apple hardware and repair guides, has seen its developer account closed and its app pulled from the App Store because it tore down a developer-only pre-release Apple TV, in direct violation of the terms and conditions of the developer agreement. The site took responsibility for the error, and apologized to app users for "any inconvenience."
Notably larger power supply, heat sink powers dual-core A8 processor
Repair site iFixit has gotten ahold of the new Apple TV and remote and posted its usual teardown and report on the device, noting that the touchscreen controller in the remote is the same one used for the iPhone 5s and 5c line, made by Broadcom, and that it includes both IR technology (for controlling volume and power on TVs) and a Qualcomm Bluetooth radio so that the device does not have to be pointed directly at the TV to use Siri.
Developers start receiving new Apple TV development kits
Developers have started to receive their new Apple TV development kits, and have posted images of the devices online. AppleInsider spotted developer's Caleb Thorson's photo of the Apple TV development kit on Twitter, though it has now been removed, with the image of the box showing the phrase "As (not yet) seen on TV" on one side. Units of the developer edition of the set-top box were distributed via a lottery, with successful applicants able to buy the new Apple TV for $1.
You say ethernet, we say ethernet a different way
MacNN's other podcast continues with the return of Malcolm Owen. He's the one who knows things while William Gallagher just pretends he does. This week they are knowing and pretending to know about iOS 9 and the various ways of mispronouncing technology terms.
Must be playable with Apple TV remote, secondary controller optional
Game developers working on apps for the new Apple TV may have to contend with another restriction when using the hardware. The App Programming Guide for tvOS advises that games "must support the Apple TV remote," an issue which will force developers to take the remote into account when working on the game's control scheme, a decision by Apple that may create some problems for those working on more complicated releases.
Developer kit for refreshed Apple TV shipping in coming days
Developers keen to start work on porting their apps or creating new software for the refreshed Apple TV are being informed if they have won a lottery to buy the set-top box itself. Apple has started to tell successful developers they can order their Apple TV Developer Kit directly from Apple itself, in order to allow them to create their apps ahead of the final release of the device to consumers in 80 countries in late October.
So many minor predictions so right, but a few big ones totally missed
This week on the MacNN podcast we have nearly a full complement of regulars, and its nice -- Charles brought the energy, Malcolm brought the energy drinks, Mike brought the funk, and William is making us all hors d'oeuvres thanks to his App of the Week selection. We do -- unlike most other sites -- talk about what we got wrong (and what we got right) on our Apple Event predictions, but also discuss Apple TV gaming, the best installment plans for iPhones, our latest new column, and much more.
Quick Provenance port suggests converting iOS apps to tvOS relatively easy
A developer may have become the first to create an emulator for the upcoming refreshed Apple TV. James Addyman, developer of the multiplatform-capable Provenance emulator, claims to have ported his software to Apple TV, getting it running within the Apple TV simulator within Xcode in around three hours, strongly suggesting existing iOS app developers will have little trouble with porting their mobile apps to Apple TV and tvOS.
Local media streaming app Plex being ported to tvOS
Users of the local network streaming movie and music service Plex will have more incentive to purchase an Apple TV, with an app for the latest model said to be in development. Days after the revelation that the latest generation of Apple TV will be able to run third-party apps, Plex co-founder Scott Olechowski confirmed developers are working on a version of its app that will be downloadable to the set-top box in the future.
Apple naysayers need to scratch a little beneath the surface
If we are to believe some of the reports following the Apple's "Hey Siri" event, Apple would seem to have run out of ideas. Apparently the iPad Pro is a "complete rip-off" of the Microsoft Surface Pro -- as Apple is selling a first-party keyboard accessory alongside it, as well as a stylus. The iPhone 6s is only an "incremental upgrade," and the new Apple TV is also another example of Apple playing "catch-up." Further, the new Apple Watch models are apparently evidence that the Apple Watch is struggling and Apple is trying to kick start sales. Apple naysayers need to scratch a little beneath surface.
Apple's gaming apps demo may show that it knows the challenges
I've loved the concept of the Apple TV, even before there was one -- as I've mentioned a few times before, I've had a Mac mini attached to a television since the genesis of the model in PowerPC form. I'm laden with them in the house, coupled to my home server, and the combination sings. So, this week, Apple rolled out what it's calling the New Apple TV, and I'm on tap for the review, whenever we can get our hands on one. I'm going to lay it on the table -- it's not going to revolutionize gaming as it is -- but there is something that will "blow the roof off the joint" so to speak. Lack of revolution doesn't mean its not important for the industry, though.
A roundup on notable but minor details, changes, and tweaks to new gear
Following Apple's media event on Wednesday that revealed the new iPad Pro, iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, and new Apple TV, some details about the new hardware has emerged. While there are also new betas of iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan released to developers and public beta testers as well, for this article we'll stick to physical changes in the new Apple products, along with a slight price increase on AppleCare + and the discontinuation of the gold options for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.
The MacNN staff looks at ins and outs of September releases
It's all over but the analysis. Apple's fall release event has come and gone, with the entire A-series processor line by Apple refreshed, all the way down to the Apple TV. Released today are details on new Apple Watch products, the iPad Pro, the long-awaited Apple TV refresh, and the only solid lock on the event -- new iPhones. Join some of the MacNN team for their thoughts on the releases.
Apple limiting app space to 200MB, with limited downloadable asset caching
Apple is imposing requirements on how developers may use the storage in a new Apple TV. According to developer guidelines for the device, applications may not exceed 200MB, and anything required in excess of that 200MB must be downloaded on demand, and cannot be permanent requirements, as they are only stored on the device for a short period of time. Furthermore, developers have no access to app-specific local storage, meaning that saved games and other similar files must be stored in the iCloud user space.
Fourth-generation Apple TV brings more apps to the living room
The fourth generation of the Apple TV has been unveiled at Apple's Special Event, with the set-top box including a large number of updates compared to previous generations. The new Apple TV is the most powerful version of the device created by Apple, and includes not only more powerful hardware, but also massive upgrades to its software, including the ability to navigate using voice, and to load apps directly on the television screen.
Countdown for Apple event stream accompanies minor graphical update
Apple has updated its Apple Events channel on the Apple TV, in preparation for streaming today's media conference. The channel's graphics have been altered to match images Apple has released concerning today's event, both for the main icon and when it is opened, with the channel details appearing when it is opened also updated with key information for today's broadcast, though sadly no extra clues for what Apple will reveal.
CBS to stream Super Bowl, AFC playoffs, two regular-season games free on Apple TV
CBS has revealed that it will stream this year's Super Bowl contest, along with the AFC playoff games and two regular-season football games on a number of "laptops, desktops, and tablets" and other devices, including Apple TV, free of charge without a need for cable account authentication. The two games will be the New York Jets versus the Miami Dolphins in London on October 4 at 9:30AM ET, and a US Thanksgiving Day game between the Carolina Panthers and the Dallas Cowboys on November 26 at 4:30PM ET.
'Confirmed' reports take cues from previous leaks, speculation
A pair of new "confirmed" rumors regarding accessories and devices that might be revealed at the September 9 Apple event are based on either previous leaked images or an "echo chamber" of cross-reported stories on the next Apple TV, though they may or may not come to pass. As widely predicted, the first of the reports says that Apple will debut new bands for the Apple Watch. While not unexpected, the report is based on a leaked image of new Sport colors shown by Sir Jonathan Ive at a show in Italy last April.
University of Oklahoma now accepting Apple Pay campus-wide
The first US university to accept Apple Pay at all locations campus-wide turns out to be the University of Oklahoma, according to a blog post from the school. In total, the ultra-secure mobile payment system is accepted at some 400 point of sale locations at the university, from the campus bookstore to all the restauarants. Apple has been a popular vendor at the One University technology store on campus, and also promotes the university's content on iTunes U and on iBooks.
Apple Watch reseller expansion reaches London department store
In a follow-up to a story run earlier today about Apple expanding the number of third-party resellers of the Apple Watch, Selfridges department store in London has created an elaborate display of manmade flowers that emulate the various face options on the Apple Watch. The store has actually been one of only a handful of select resellers that have carried the Apple Watch since its April debut.
Rumored Apple TV refresh may offer iOS developers a new audience
The rumored refresh of the Apple TV in September will be the first to use iOS at its core, according to a report, with it using a TV-optimized version of iOS 9 along with new hardware. The new claims come at the same time as a suggestion from a prominent investment management firm that Apple may be making a play for the console gaming market, with an iOS-equipped set-top box capable of taking on current-generation gaming systems.
Wherein, the MacNN staff gazes into the crystal ball
I've been battered with requests on Facebook and Twitter to talk about what we see for the rumored (but likely) September Apple media event. My response sits on a clipping on my desktop, and says in essence, that there is little value in speculating, as Apple will do what Apple will do, but the requests continue. Fine. I give up! I've corralled the staff, and forced them to write about what they see for the next event, and to criticize the rumor mill at large. Read on for our thoughts.
Quiet recall taking place now, Apple contacting affected users
Apple is issuing replacements for a "very limited" selection of recently-produced, third-generation Apple TV media streamers. The company is proactively reaching out to those it has identified as affected by the flaw, offering an overnight replacement, as well as a small-denomination iTunes gift card as a compensatory gift.
Apple TV update, SDK could be launched in next few months, report claims
The Apple TV may be the subject of a refresh in the near future, according to another recent rumor for the streaming set-top box. The latest version claims Apple is intending to unveil a next-generation Apple TV in September, alongside the launch of new iPhones, with it this time incorporating many updates, including an update to its operating system that allows access to the App Store, as well as voice control provided by Siri.
Game Pass will allow NFL games to be shown on Apple TV for first time
Fans of the NFL will soon be able to sign up for a new subscription that will provide access to on-demand video, as part of changes to the NFL Mobile app. The Game Pass, replacing the existing Game Rewind on-demand service, will provide access to all 65 preseason games and 256 regular season games via video streams, including live out-of-market feeds for preseason matches.
Company expands streaming option ahead of 'legal Aereo' option
Owners of several TiVo DVR models, including the Roamio line and the TiVo Premiere with TiVo Stream now have the ability to access recorded content through Apple TV via AirPlay, a first for the company. The new ability comes through an updated TiVo iOS application, available today, which allows the AirPlay transfer. The Roamio DVRs had been able to stream directly to iOS devices previously, but can now stream to other devices not directly connected to the DVR.