Apple TV 4K announced with HDR and live sports content

Wednesday, 13 Sep, 2017

That all changes today, as the company announced the Apple TV 4K. A representative from Thatgamecompany (developer of flOw, Flower, and Journey) stepped on stage briefly to highlights its upcoming iOS-exclusive game Sky, which will be playable on the new Apple TV 4K through its support of Apple's Metal 2 3D graphics API. And it doesn't seem like there's any bad blood there, either, since Apple has teamed with 20th Century Fox, Lionsgate, Universal, Paramount, Sony, and Warner Bros.to bring their 4K and HDR titles to the iTunes store.

Apple also announced that later this year, it will debut live sports and news on the Apple TV.

Cue also revealed that the Apple TV app, now only available in the United States is to begin to roll out in other markets. I think the Apple TV 4K will still be the best of the lot, but it's not worth almost double the asking price of the others.

What's interesting about Apple's choice to require a 15Mbps minimum bandwidth connection for Apple TV to be able to deliver 4K is that Apple has yet to define whether the minimum bandwidth requirement will be for standard or high-dynamic range. Pre-orders will begin on September 15, and it will start shipping on September 22.

The latest Apple TV is priced at $179 with 32GB of internal storage and $199 with 64GB. This is certainly welcomed news for those deeply tied into Apple's ecosystem, but it's worth noting that owners of other devices like the Google's Chromecast Ultra or Roku Premiere have enjoyed accessing 4k quality content for almost a year already. So now it's trying an upgrade: The new box will support 4K - super-high-definition - movies and TV shows. "While 4K is about the number of pixels, HDR is about better pixels", said Apple SVP Eddy Cue while introducing the new device.

Instead, Apple has now added the A10X Fusion processor, as found in the latest iPad Pro models.

With 4K finally being baked into the Apple TV, Apple has caught up with competitors like Amazon, Google and Roku, which already do or soon will offer 4K-enabled streaming devices. The current Apple TV uses the A8 chip, which was launched alongside the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in 2014, but that isn't capable of 4K video playback.