Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is finally here and the company has started the proceedings of this four-day long event by announcing updates to the software that runs its AppleTV product, the tvOS. While talking on the stage at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center, San Jose, California, company CEO Tim Cook introduced a redesigned Home screen, multi-user support, Apple Music on tvOS, and support for PlayStation and Xbox controllers, among other new features. The company also introduced watchOS with new watch faces, App Store support and new health-related fucntionalities.
On the stage, Cook said that the redesigned home screen of the tvOS 13 will now offer full-screen content previews to users. tvOS 13 also adds multi-user support that will let multiple members of a family to watch their favourite shows. There is a redesigned Control Center which is responsible for user-switching duties. The OS will offer personalised recommendations on all the content to each individual user on the basis of their watching trends.
“That’s the new tvOS: it’s more personal and more entertaining than ever. We completely redesigned the home screen, making Apple TV come to life from the moment that you turn it on, with full-screen previews of the best TV shows and newly released movies,” Cook said.
Further, the company has added the Apple Music on tvOS that will come with lyrics support. So, when a song is playing on your TV, you can read the lyrics on the screen and sing along your favourite singer. Apple also made a gaming-related announcement. The company said that when the tvOS 13 launches later this year, it will add support for Xbox One and PlayStation DualShock game controllers. It already supports Bluetooth controllers. Finally, Apple announced that it partnered with BBC’s natural history unit to shoot 4K HDR underwater footage for new screensavers.
The update builds on tvOS 12.3 that Apple released last month. The redesigned Apple TV app enabled users to see the new app on their iPhones and iPads as well. In the US, the app includes access to Apple TV channels like HBO, Starz, SHOWTIME, Smithsonian Channel, EPIX, Tastemade and new services like MTV Hits. In India, the Apple TV app features films from Hollywood, Bollywood, and other regional languages for rent and purchase.
At WWDC 2019, Apple introduced watchOS 6 update that takes a step forward in making the Apple Watch an independent device. The company has brought functionalities like App Store, voice memos, Books app for listening to audio books and Calculator with tip calculator on the wearable. The update also brings a bunch of new watch faces which include a sundial-styled Solar analog watch, an analog option called Modular Compact, an analog mix of Roman and Arabic numerals called California, new extra-large digital options, and Gradient.
As mentioned, users can now install App Store app directly on the watch. In addition, users will be able to download Watch software without relying on an iPhone. Apple also added Activity Trends to the watch that will enable users to keep a tab on their activity and workouts. In case, the regular activity trend falls below average, the app will provide coaching to normalise the activity. There is an all new Noise app that will let users check ambient noise levels. In the health department, the watchOS6 offers a bunch of additions, including a Dose feature to provide pill reminders and Cycle Tracking, which will let women track menstrual cycles. The app is introduced on both watchOS and iOS. The company also announced “summer” bands, including a Pride watch band that matches a Pride watch face.