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The TV App Is Coming to tvOS

At Apple’s October “Hello Again” event, the company announced a major paradigm shift for tvOS, in the form of the soon-to-be-released TV app.

The TV app will aggregate content from multiple apps, help you track your favorite shows, and suggest new content. Unfortunately, Netflix isn’t on board in the app and Amazon is still nowhere to be found in tvOS.

One interesting aspect of the TV app is that you’ll be able to access it via the Home button on the Siri Remote. Even more interesting, the icon for the Home button on the Siri Remote is the same as the app icon for the TV app. Was this the tvOS front end that Apple always intended?

Based on the demo, it appears that the TV app will be the tvOS equivalent of watch faces in watchOS. In watchOS, the “main” screen is the watch face, and while you can launch some apps from there, you have to drop down to an app launcher to see them all. However, the trade-off makes sense because when you raise your wrist, you want to see the time, not a swarm of app icons. Likewise, when you fire up the Apple TV, you probably want to watch a movie or TV show. But without Netflix on board, that could be a frustrating experience if you primarily stream from there.

I covered the TV app announcement in detail in the TidBITS article Apple’s TV App Seeks to Unify the Apple TV Experience.