tvOS 15: New features, compatibility, release date
12 'tvOS 15' stories
June 2021 - September 2021
tvOS 15 received its first preview during the WWDC21 keynote. The Apple TV software will receive a small update but with great new features.
Table of contents
New features in tvOS 15
Different from all other upcoming operating systems from Apple, tvOS 15 doesn’t have a special page about its new features. In fact, everything new with the system is available on the new Apple TV 4K page.
The upcoming tvOS operating system will bring SharePlay functionalities, HomePod mini integration as the TV speaker, Spatial Audio, and more:
- For All of You: Browse a new row in the Apple TV app to find something that everyone in the house can’t wait to watch.
- Shared with You: Movies and shows shared through Messages appear in a new row in the Apple TV app.
- Spatial Audio: Listen with AirPods Pro or AirPods Max for a theater-like experience with sound that surrounds you.
- Smart AirPods routing: Get an automatic onscreen notification to magically connect your AirPods.
- HomeKit camera enhancements: View multiple cameras around the house at the same time on your Apple TV.
- Room-filling stereo sound: Pair two HomePod mini speakers with Apple TV 4K and enjoy rich, balanced sound for everything you watch.
SharePlay feature, which was supposed to be one of the key functions coming to tvOS 15 and will let you watch movies or shows while on a FaceTime call on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac, then add Apple TV to share the viewing experience on the big screen, is not launching with version 15. Apple confirmed it will need a bit more time to release this feature.
HomePod 15 software
HomePod 15, the operating system based on tvOS 15 and made for the HomePod and HomePod mini, will launch alongside the tvOS update.
This beta software is only available to a select number of developers and Apple usually doesn’t specify the features coming to it.
As for now, we were able to confirm that Apple is working on add Lossless and Dolby Atmos support to the HomePod, as you can learn more about it here.
tvOS 15 device compatibility
All Apple TVs compatible with tvOS will be able to upgrade to the newest tvOS. Here’s the full list:
- Apple TV HD (2015)
- Apple TV 4K (2016)
- Apple TV 4K (2021)
Release date: When will tvOS 15 come out?
tvOS 15 was introduced at Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference.
Its beta program started on the same day as the keynote, June 7. The release of the upcoming tvOS version to the general public is expected in the fall, probably around September.
Apple is currently testing tvOS beta 9.
tvOS 15 public beta: release date and how to install
On June 30, Apple released the tvOS 15 public beta version. With that, all fourth-generation Apple TV owners will be able to install the upcoming tvOS software, set to release in a few months from now.
Here’s how to instal tvOS public beta:
First, go to the beta.apple.com website and sign up with your Apple ID (preferably the one you use with your Apple TV). If you have never joined the Apple Beta Software Program before, the update might not appear on your Apple TV, so make sure you are registered in the program.
After that, follow these steps:
- Open the Settings app on your Apple TV
- Enter the System menu
- Click Software Updates
- Turn on Get Beta Updates option