During its recent keynote in San Francisco, Apple unveiled its new Apple TV, which will introduce Siri, gaming and apps to the entertainment platform. The device runs the all-new tvOS operative system, based on Apple’s iOS, which will include access to the new Apple TV App Store. The new Apple TV will also offer all of the content from the existing Apple TV platform.
The new Apple TV includes the Siri Remote, which offers a glass touch surface for navigation, a built-in accelerometer and gyroscope, and can be used to access voice commands via Siri. This voice option allows users to search for television shows and movies across multiple content providers using their voice. When searching for entertainment content, voice prompts can be vague or specific (‘Find the best funny movies from the 80s,’ for instance). While watching a program or film, users can also ask Siri for weather, stock or sports updates.
In addition to Siri integration, the Apple TV will support a wide variety of third-party apps, including content providers Netflix, HBO Now and Hulu, fitness app Zova, comic and motion book reader Madefire and travel app Airbnb, among others. The new Apple TV will also support Apple Music.
Finally, Apple TV introduces gaming to the platform, with support for Apple’s Metal for high-quality graphics, as well as Game Center. In addition to offering games previously released on iOS devices (like Gameloft‘s Asphalt 8: Airborne), the new Apple TV will also allow developers to create entirely new and exclusive games for the platform, like Beat Sports from Rock Band creator Harmonix and publisher Tilting Point.
Beat Sports will offer rhythm-based mini-games inspired by sports like tennis, volleyball and golf. In a statement, Matt Boch, product manager at Harmonix, commented:
At Harmonix, we have a long history of using new technology to bring innovative musical experiences to living rooms around the world with games like Rock Band. We immediately saw the potential for new ways to play that the Apple TV opens up, and couldn’t wait to start designing an all-new experience for this exciting new technology. We can’t wait to see how this revolutionary gaming platform changes the entertainment landscape.
During Apple’s keynote, Hipster Whale announced its massively popular mobile game, Crossy Road, will come to Apple TV, and will offer multiplayer functionality exclusive to the Apple TV version of the game. For these multiplayer experiences, users can connect their iOS devices to the Apple TV to serve as additional controllers. The new Apple TV will also support third-party MFi-based gaming controllers.
On stage, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet software and services, Eddy Cue, revealed additional games coming to Apple TV, including Triada Studio Games’ Shadowmatic, Disney Infinity 3.0 from Disney Interactive and Ubisoft’s Rayman Adventures.
Elsewhere, Deep Silver Fishlabs, the mobile devision of Deep Silver, announced Galaxy on Fire—Manticore Rising will launch as an Apple TV exclusive title. The game is the prequel to the upcoming mobile game Galaxy on Fire 3—Manticore, which is expected to launch in 2016. Galaxy on Fire—Manticore Rising will be available on release day for the new Apple TV later this year.
In a statement, Jamie Jackson, co-studio head and creative director at FreeStyleGames, maker of Guitar Hero Live, commented:
We jumped at the opportunity to bring back Guitar Hero in a cool new way with Guitar Hero Live, and have been energized by the response from fans who have had a chance to play it so far. We can’t wait for the game to launch next month and think people are going to get a kick out of living their rock star fantasy on consoles, mobile devices and Apple TV this fall. It’s going to be rad!
The new Apple TV will release at the end of October in two models: 32GB for $149 and 64GB for $199.