I was really hoping for a big announcement from Apple at their October event regarding a new Apple TV update. Unfortunately, we are still left with a device that hasn’t seen a major hardware upgrade in three years. I don’t mind, though—since the recent software update to iOS8 I love the Apple TV even more and find myself using it to watch all of my favorite shows.
The most recent Apple TV update added a few key apps that make it the best streaming device on the market. Namely, the FX Now app, Beats Music app, and Family Sharing. FX Now brings to the device all the FX networks, including FX, FXX, and FXM, which have some of my favorite shows right now like The League, Sons of Anarchy, and American Horror Story. You do still need a cable subscription to utilize the service, but the ease of use beats my DVR any day.
The Beats Music app adds a streaming music library to your TV. We are still sorely missing apps from Pandora and Spotify, but Beats Music and iTunes Radio can still get the job done when you are wanting to listen to some tunes on the fly. The latest big addition of Family Sharing ties in seamlessly with the new Yosemite operating system and iOS8 on your iPad and iPhone. You can tie all of your family’s iTunes accounts together, and any new purchases will be available on all approved devices. That means that when your teenage daughter buys a new hit song, it is immediately available in your library and on your Apple TV as well.
While it is a drag to still have to pay for cable to use some of these apps, there are signs of change coming. HBO has just announced that you will be able to buy a subscription to their HBO GO app without a cable subscription. Other networks and services I am sure are not too far behind. (We are looking at you, ESPN.) The only app I am missing on Apple TV that would make it the perfect device? An app for AMC, so I can watch The Walking Dead and the forthcoming Better Call Saul.
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