The recent Apple media event “Hey Siri” in San Francisco in early September brought news of the 9th generation of iPhones, the iPhone 6s, as well as a plethora of new gadgets for Apple fanatics across the globe. Home entertainment fans will no doubt be most excited about the newest Apple TV, the fourth iteration of the popular set-top box, which improves in form and function from the device’s previous generations.
Meet the Apple TV 4
Design-wise, the Apple TV box looks the same as previous generations – a black, square design, 1.5 inches tall and weighing in just shy of one pound. Although the design isn’t anything special, it helps the Apple TV 4th Generation integrate seamlessly with other home theater system elements. The real power of this product upgrade is what’s “under the hood”: a 2GB RAM and an A8 chip, which is faster than the previous A5 version. This will allow the Apple TV 4th Generation to support a full App Store – a dream come true for casual and console gamers. Apple TV 4th Generation boasts tvOS, an operating system built for Apple TV, patterned after iOS9. Apple TV 4th Generation users will be able to find new things to do through your Smart TV, bringing home entertainment access to a new level.
If you rely on Siri to give you directions and help you call your friends, you’re in luck: Siri has been integrated into Apple TV 4th Generation substantially. The device has universal search capabilities, which means you can search the full range of entertainment apps (iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Showtime) to find exactly what you’re looking for. The sleek new Apple TV 4th Generation remote has two microphones to help Siri pick up your voice commands, and a glass-top surface that functions like an iOS device; scrolling, tapping and swiping on the surface controls on your screen. According to Apple, the remote is designed to feel “fluid and precise”, allowing users to access features without looking at the buttons.
The Apple TV 4th Generation will be available in 32 and 64GB versions for $149 and $199 respectively, and will be available for purchase in late October.
Are these new upgrades a game-changer for set-top boxes?
*Photo credit Apple.