Apple TV App Is First ‘Unified TV’ Experience For iPhone, iPad

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Tim Cook at the October Apple event. Apple

Tim Cook has said time and time again that “the future of TV is apps” and he’s taken his own advice to give the Apple TV a serious upgrade. Tim Cook announced a new free app, simply called TV, which allows Apple users to watch their favorite shows all in one place on their iPad, iPhone and Apple TV. The new app integrates streaming platforms like Netflix, HBO Go, FX Network and CBS together to create a unified viewing experience.

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The Apple TV App puts all your favorite binge-watching apps in one place. Photo: Apple

The TV App takes universal search to the next level. For example, instead of selecting each individual app to watch different shows, the TV app combines all of these streaming services into a single interface. Your recently watched shows will all appear in one place and new episodes will automatically appear, regardless of what streaming platform the content originates from. When you click play on a show, the TV app takes you straight to the corresponding and immediately starts playing the content.

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Jen Folse presents the new Apple TV App. Photo: Apple

“The Up Next feature lets you pick up where you left off in movies and TV shows you're currently watching,” said Apple Design Producer Jen Folse.

There’s also a new feature called Live. Using all the available Apple TV apps that let you watch live news and sports, simply tell Siri you want to watch college football, for instance, and she’ll find the app the game is on for you.

“Now, there's a unified TV experience. One place to discover and enjoy your favorite TV shows and movies across all of your devices," Cook said.

The TV app will be especially useful to viewers wishing to discover new shows. Without having to sign into each separate streaming service, you’ll be able to access each streaming platform's content via the TV app with suggestions selected by Apple staff.

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Tim Cook at the October Apple event. Photo: Apple

In addition to the new TV app features, Apple is also updating the Twitter app in an effort to make watching TV more interactive and social. The presentation showed a football game with a stream of tweets and live content scrolling next to the livestream. NFL Thursday night football, NHL, NBA, Bloomberg and election coverage from Buzzfeed will be supported.

“There is no reason to watch TV anywhere else,” Tim Cook concluded.

Tim Cook said the TV app will be released in a free update by the end of December.

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