04 November, 2015
Apple TV Review
Last week Apple started selling the newest model of its set-top box, the Apple TV. This Apple TV has more power and gives you more features.
The new Apple TV lets you watch shows, view photos, and listen to music. You can also play games, use apps and speak to the Apple TV.
What's in the Box
The Apple TV comes complete with:
- Apple TV
- Power Cable
- Lightning Cable
- Remote Control
- Getting Started Guide
What's Not in the Box
You'll need one of these cables (sold separately) to connect the Apple TV to your TV.
The Apple TV has apps. Some apps are like TV channels you watch. Other apps are like the apps you use on your iPhone or iPad.
Some apps are free, some apps you can buy. Some apps are free but you have to pay to watch the shows.
You can get apps for watching TV shows and movies, such as Netflix, HBOGo, Showtime Anytime, Hulu, YouTube, History, PBS and more. You can also get apps for games, cooking, fitness, shopping, travel and more.
Apple TV Apps
The Apple TV App Store has apps such as Zillow to shop for homes, and Airbnb to find places to stay when you travel. Check out Zova for exercise and Kitchen Stories for cooking.
The App Store doesn't have many apps yet. But more apps will come to the App Store in the future.
The best part of Apple TV may be Siri, the voice assistant first introduced on the iPhone. The Apple TV gives Siri new powers.
According to Apple Insider, Siri will only work on the Apple TV in eight of the 80 countries where Apple TV is sold: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Spain, the U.K. and the U.S.
What Did They Say?
Siri can help you understand what has been said with the What Did They Say feature. Ask Siri, "What did they say?" and the show will rewind 15 seconds. Words will appear on the screen so you can read what is being said.
Siri can also help you search for shows. You can ask for shows that have a certain actor, are from a year, or are "good". You can ask Siri to go to different parts of the show.
For example, you can ask Siri to:
- show you James Bond movies starring Daniel Craig
- fast-forward 15 minutes
- find kids' shows
Ask Siri to find a movie or TV show and you'll see a list of apps that have the show.
Unfortunately, Siri doesn't work with all apps yet. You can search through iTunes,Netflix, Hulu, HBO, and Showtime, but not others yet.
Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, has said that Siri will be able to search more apps in the future.
Siri can open apps but can't answer questions such as "What is 1 + 1?" She can't yet search the App Store.
But she can help you search for shows, tell you what the weather is, and help you navigate your shows.
The Apple TV remote control has few buttons. Instead, you use the touch panel part of the remote to navigate.
Swipe left to right to fast-forward. Swipe right to left to rewind.
Swipe down to get more information about what you're watching, and adjust the settings. Press to choose an option on screen.
The remote also acts as a game controller. It can sense your motion so you can use it to control play in game apps.
You can also use Apple or third-party game controllers with the Apple TV.
Ideas for the Future
Where Is 4K?
One omission from Apple TV is 4K resolution. The picture of the Apple TV is extremely sharp and detailed. The picture quality is excellent so you may not miss 4K at all.
The new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus record video in 4K. Seeing these videos on your Apple TV would seem like a natural fit.
You may not have a 4K TV so you may not care that Apple TV doesn't have 4K. But someday 4K may become the standard, much as HD is now.
Apple TV is not yet ready for the future of 4K.
But having 4K on your Apple TV would add to the cost. If you don't care about 4K then you're probably glad that Apple TV doesn't charge extra for 4K.
The Remote app for the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch doesn't control this model Apple TV. I hope the Remote app will control the Apple TV in the future.
The Apple TV is available in 80 countries around the world.
You can get the Apple TV in two sizes, 32 GB for $149 and 64 GB for $199.
If you think you'll be using a lot of apps and playing a lot of games, then you may want to choose the larger size. If you don't think you'll be using a lot of space then the 32 GB might be a fine choice for you.
Which features of the Apple TV do you like the most? What features would you like to see added? Which apps would you use on the Apple TV?
Share your thoughts in the Comments section below or on our
Carolyn Nicander Mohr wrote this story for Learning English. Kathleen Struck was the editor.
Words in This Story
feature - n. an interesting or important part, quality, ability, etc.
app - n. a computer program that performs a particular task (such as word
cable - n. a group of wires, glass fibers, etc., covered in plastic or rubber and used to carry electricity or electrical signals
remote control - n. a small device that is used to operate electronic equipment (such as a television) from a distance by using electronic signals
HDMI cable – n. digital video cable
channel - n. a television or radio station
assistant - n. a person who helps someone
navigate – v. to control the direction of something
swipe - v. to move a finger or fingers, or a stylus, across an area on (a touchscreen) in order to execute a command
4K resolution - n. a minimum resolution of 3,840 pixels wide and 2,160 pixels high
pixel - n. any one of the very small dots that together form the picture on a television screen, computer monitor, etc.
available - adj. possible to get or use