The Potential of Apple TV Apps
If you're involved in iOS development, then among IoT innovations like the Apple Watch, you're likely eyeing Apple TV as your next frontier for development opportunities. Now into the fourth generation, Apple TV has come a long way, but it isn't quite there yet in terms of what it eventually will be capable of. Still, there is a lot of potential there for the developers who figure out how to work it to their advantage. Here are the strengths, weaknesses, and potential of the Apple TV from the developer's perspective.
What the Fourth Generation of Apple TV Does Really Well
Apple has opened its Apple TV platform for developers, and the fourth generation allows users to download their own apps, which is different from previous generations. The hardware and remote control are also much better, and Apple TV now has limited access to Siri. The gaming controller is improved, though not to the level of the serious gamer. It is most adequate, however, for the casual gamer -- like families playing with children. The video is great, the audio is nice, and there are already a lot of attractive apps out there to give the iOS development professional an idea of what's working, as well as what isn't and start their own Apple TV app development.
Some Ideas to Inspire Your Apple TV Development Projects
Let’s delve into the future of Apple TV apps. So far, some of the best apps trends for Apple TV include:
• Fitness apps - Zova's popularity is driven by its ability to integrate with Apple's Health app and the Apple Watch.
• Religious apps - Given the popularity of religious-based content like blockbuster movies (consider the success of movies like War Room and God is Not Dead) and music (think Skillet, Thousand Foot Crutch, and Delirious), there is huge potential for apps like Roku, which are delivering what religious groups can't find in most mainstream media sources.
• Interactive video content - Previous generations were inhibited by a pathetically slow interface, but the fourth generation can rock interactive content quite well.
• Shopping - The QVC app revolutionizes the way shoppers can interact with the brand, check price and buy the merchandise.
• Stock trading - The Fidelity app isn't up to par with the desktop trading experience, but it is adequate for the casual trader. The premise has a lot that other app developers can draw on and learn from.
• Music apps - In order to be a compelling force on Apple TV, a music app has to do more than (ho, hum) play music. Apps like Touchpress give the viewer something extra, like a sneak peak of a much-anticipated performance or other exclusive content.
• Real estate - Shopping for a home is often easier on a TV, because the whole family can see and participate, which can be hard on a smartphone or even some computers. Zillow is an excellent example of what a real estate app (and similar apps) can do on the latest generation Apple TV.
• Travel and vacation planning - Airbnb is known for innovation, so it's unsurprising they were among the first to roll out an interactive app for the Apple TV. Like real estate apps, it puts vacation planning in the living room or bedroom so that the whole family can see and participate (and so that Mom and Dad don't have to get up to show everyone the swimming pool at the vacation rental property).
• Weather - This is perhaps the least surprising, but one of the most powerful. Interactive weather apps have long needed to be accessible via television. Apps like Seasonality do just that.
• Cooking apps - The Yummly cooking app offers recipes, powerful shopping list tools, and more. The beauty of this app is that you can lay in bed and plan a meal or menu on the TV and then use your smartphone app when you go shopping. Brilliant.
• Fun screensavers - There are also a lot of silly apps that are shockingly popular, such as the obligatory fireplace screen saver apps that are so bountiful in the holiday season. Still, it does make for a nice background if you happen to lack a real fireplace. Screensavers are also excellent background scenery for parties, family get-togethers, game night, and other special occasions.
• Art and culture - Since Apple TV's core demographic group are forward-thinking types, it's a natural platform for artistic and cultural apps, such as Artsy Shows, which allows users to download, view, and explore new artworks every day.
We discussed some of the ideas for Apple TV apps. This collection of examples is sure to spark your imagination for something useful your iOS development staff could conjure up for the Apple TV.
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