So today June 13th was the day of WWDC and luckily I got to catch a glimpse of the presentation for Apple’s TVos. So far Apple has played catch up in the set-top box market compared to competitors, but with this conference they brought some new things and some “me too!” features so let’s get to it.
- Siri universal search – “me-too!” #1 as we all know Android TV does this well so nothing too crazy here, Eddy Cue showed off a reworked iPhone remote app that includes all the same features as the bundled Siri Remote.
- Live Tune-in – This is live channels on a app per app basis with the ability to use voice context and tell Siri to watch a certain app, I’d definitely like to see that added to Google’s live channels/apps instead of manual search through the guide.
- Homekit – After Google I/O I thought that Google had nailed home automation with Google Home but left out one key feature and that’s something like Homekit which can control smart devices from any iOS device something I hope the Google assistant brings itself to everything including the big screen because how nice would it be to tell your Android TV to turn off all the light before a movie or Game of Thrones starts.
- Dark mode – because being blinded by white light is the last thing I want at night.
- Automatic App Downloads – Downloading it on a phone or iPad? Apple TV will download the TV related app if so!
- Single Sign-on – This is the big one and one that anyone who’s ever done a login on a TV before can agree it’s a complete pain to do or to go to a URL and link your info. What if just like a login with Facebook or Google or Active Directory at your workplace you signed in once with one login and you were done, well that’s Apple’s proposal but they didn’t go into grave detail on how but said all TV everywhere apps ( HBO, NBC, ABC, ESPN, etc.) will work with it so i assume cable providers logins are saved from the first time. For the technical aspects you’ll have to wait till the fall but it’s promising and definitely something Google should look into because outside of G+ sign in on games on Android TV such a thing is non-existent.
All in all this was a good show for Apple to push the set-top box market forward and encourage competition from big G and OEM’s like NVIDIA to keep innovating and to try to 1 up each other.