Having initially started life as a ‘hobby’ in the words of the late Steve Jobs, the Apple TV has rapidly gained in sophistication to become a leading hub for home entertainment. With the new software upgrade announced at Cupertino last night, Apple has taken another step forward in its quest to deliver a comprehensive television platform with a user experience to match.
A persistent drawback of most comparative systems is the convoluted text entry process required for search functions and entering log-in credentials. Apple has resolved this neatly with tvOS 9.2 by allowing these actions to be performed using the Siri remote, thereby stripping out much of the effort involved and making the experience more intuitive.
For homeowners whose audio systems run over Bluetooth, the new update means that volume can be controlled directly from the Siri remote rather than in the settings menu. This removes another layer of frustration that many users have previously experienced.
Apple’s trend towards an overall unified look and feel across its devices is apparent in the tweaks that it has made to how a user switches between apps on the Apple TV. The new function now resembles the interface you would expect to find on iOS 9 and behaves in much the same manner.
Each update might seem small in and of itself, but the changes made to tvOS with v9.2 are greater than the sum of their parts. As a primarily user-focused update, this represents a marked shift towards making the Apple TV a device that offers the same instinctive usability that the marques other products are known for.
tvOS 9.2 is available as a free upgrade for current Apple TV users.