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"We believe the future of TV is apps"

"We believe the future of TV is apps"

With that quote, Tim Cook led off the section of Apple’s event today that was devoted to unveiling the highly anticipated, revamped fourth-generation Apple TV. Brightcove’s CTO for Media, Albert Lai, was among the odds-makers guessing at what we might hear today and what each announcement would mean for video content owners. Well, let’s recap the news and see how he fared before looking at a related and exciting announcement around how Brightcove will be expanding our investment in supporting Apple TV and the Apple platform to help media publishers create even more fantastic video experiences.

The Recap:

  • Faster A8 chip?  Check (although not the A9 coming to the iPad Pro)
  • Universal Search? Check (well, at least for a few of the big name apps like Netflix, HBO and Showtime that are on the box so far).
  • UHD was mostly a miss as the Apple TV is limited to 1080p resolution. However, the demo of MLB's "At Bat" app showcased HFR (60fps) streaming. But to tease the future, the new iPhone 6S will shoot video in 4K.
  • Siri stole the show in Jen Folse’s demo and the new Apple TV remote’s capabilities dazzled throughout Eddy Cue’s presentation – including the guest presentations devoted to gaming.
  • And Apple announced a built-in App Store. While there were few details as to how open the App Store will be at launch, the public dissemination of developer documentation, the alignment with iOS and other Apple Products, and the variety of announced apps – from the traditional video services to games (Crossy Road, Guitar Hero) to commerce (Gilt, Airbnb, Zillow) to publishing (Madefire) – hint at an expanded and more open Apple TV platform for companies.

Albert speculated about Apple TV running iOS 9 – but the twist today was Eddy introducing “tvOS” for Apple TV. tvOS is a derivative OS that will accelerate adoption by both existing iOS and Apple TV developers. For those familiar with the existing JavaScript-based Apple TV SDK, tvOS introduces TVML to build the front-end interface and tvOS Frameworks to bridge the front-end with native iOS frameworks. In addition, integration with iCloud enables sharing information across Apple devices to enable true multi-screen experiences. The tightening of the cross-platform ecosystem was also apparent in new functions like “universal purchase” – the ability for an app to be simultaneously downloaded and available on the TV and all of his/her iOS devices and the enablement of pause/resume for games or video across devices – including the TV.

So with the developer program for tvOS now in beta and the hardware available in late October in 80 countries (100 by year’s end) – what’s next?  

All-new: Brightcove Jump Start for Apple TV®:

We’re excited to announce a new fast track for publishers to incorporate beautiful video experiences into their apps on the new Apple TV. Brightcove Jump Start combines industry leading building blocks such as Video Cloud with Brightcove’s services expertise to get new video-enabled apps onto Apple TV ASAP (subject to availability of products and services from Apple). Jump Start packages start at $10k and include user experience (UX) design, high performance video playback, easy to manage content catalog, and robust analytics.

Let Brightcove Jump Start your Apple TV® app