First shown in late 2006 and actually released in early 2007, the Apple TV went through a more substantial transformation than any other Apple product in the past decade. The original model was a stripped-down Macintosh computer with a 40GB hard drive, serving as a screenless iPod for playing videos, music, and photos on an HDTV. Apple unveiled a completely redesigned plastic model in 2010, dropping the hard drive in favor of 8GB of flash storage, and in late 2015 the device was updated again with its own tvOS operating system, a slightly thicker design, and an all-new Siri Remote.
The Apple TV serves a variety of different purposes now thanks to its tvOS operating system, which is only going to get better later this year when tvOS 10 is released to the public. The fourth-gen Apple TV has its own App Store that offers a variety of streaming apps like Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, HBO, CBS, and much more, as well as utility apps and a variety of unique games.
Using AirPlay with your iOS device or Mac, you can stream videos, photos, and music directly from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or Mac to your HDT, as well as mirroring their screens. Under some circumstances, Macs can use a TV equipped with an Apple TV as a second display.
The fourth-gen Apple TV also included a brand new Siri Remote. This remote is considerably different than the aluminum remote that previously shipped with the device. The Siri Remote includes a dedicated Siri button that, when paired with Universal Search on the Apple TV, allows users to easily look up content from a variety of sources with a single search. Apple is routinely adding more services to Universal Search, as well.
With the Apple TV 4, Apple did increase the price to $149 for 32GB of storage and $199 for 64GB. That’s $50 more than the previous generation model, but with the Siri Remote, tvOS, App Store, and much more, it’s easily one of the best streaming solutions on the market.
599 Apple TV stories
September 2010 - August 2016