Apple Seeds First Beta of Upcoming tvOS 12.4 Update to Developers

Apple today seeded the first beta of an upcoming tvOS 12.4 update to developers for testing purposes, a few days after releasing the tvOS 12.3 update.

Designed for the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models, the new tvOS 12.4 developer beta can be downloaded onto the Apple TV through a profile that's installed using Apple's Xcode software.


tvOS updates have historically been minor in scale, focusing on under-the-hood bug fixes and improvements rather than major outward-facing changes. Apple provides little to no information on what's included in tvOS updates, so we may not discover anything new after installing the new beta.

We don't always know what's new, but we do share tvOS updates so developers are able to download new software upon release.

tvOS 12.3, the prior update, was a one of the most significant tvOS updates we've had to date, introducing an updated TV app along with a new Channels feature designed to let Apple TV users purchase subscriptions to services like HBO, Showtime, Starz, and more right in the TV app.

Should we discover new features in tvOS 12.4, we'll update this post with details.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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Apple Releases tvOS 12.3 With Updated TV App

Apple today released tvOS 12.3, the seventh update to the tvOS 12 operating system that runs on the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models. tvOS 12.3 comes more than a month after the release of tvOS 12.2.1, a minor bug fix update.

tvOS 12.3 is a free update that can be downloaded over the air through the Settings app on the Apple TV by going to System -> Software Update. Apple TV owners who have automatic software updates turned on will be upgraded to tvOS 12.3 automatically.


tvOS 12.3 is the biggest tvOS update Apple has released for quite some time because it introduces an overhauled TV app, which Apple first showed off earlier this year at its March 25 event. The new TV app is similar to the old TV app but it has a refreshed, modern look along with new features.


There are dedicated sections for TV shows, movies, sports, and children's programming, along with access to your iTunes content. There continues to be a "Watch Now" section with an "Up Next" feature for keeping track of the TV shows and movies you're watching, and there's a new machine-learning based "For You" option that surfaces content recommendations based on what you've previously watched.


Apple has included a "Channels" feature, which is a major part of the company's new services push. With Channels, you can subscribe to paid TV content from services like HBO, Showtime, and Starz, and watch that content right within the TV app without having to swap over to a third-party app.


When you subscribe to a service through the TV app, Apple gets a cut of the subscription price and it makes it easier to access third-party content. While Channels are available, the TV app will continue to recommend content that's also only available through third-party apps, so it will work the same way that it did before, but with better recommendations.


The new Apple TV app is available in more than 100 countries starting today, and with Family Sharing, up to six family members are able to share subscriptions to Apple TV channels. Channels content can be watched both online or offline, including HBO content.

In the future, Apple plans to make its new TV+ subscription service available through the TV app, with TV+ offering up access to Apple's original TV shows and movies. The TV app is available on the Apple TV and iOS devices, and in the future, it will expand to the Mac.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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Apple Seeds Fifth Beta of tvOS 12.3 to Developers

Apple today seeded the fifth beta of an upcoming tvOS 12.3 update to developers, one week seeding the fourth beta and more than a month after releasing tvOS 12.2.

Designed for the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models, the new tvOS 12.3 developer beta can be downloaded onto the Apple TV through a profile installed using Xcode.


tvOS 12.3 includes a revamped TV app that was first shown off at Apple's March 25 services-focused event. The TV app is an updated version of the original TV app, providing access to TV shows, movies, sports, news, and more, along with a dedicated section for children's programming.

The TV app offers an updated interface with a fresh look and feel that's more modern. It still has the "Watch Now" section with the "Up Next" feature for keeping track of the TV shows and movies you're watching, and there's a new machine-learning based "For You" feature that surfaces content based on what you've previously watched.


There's a new "Channels" option built in to the app, which is a major part of Apple's new services push. Channels are subscription services that you can subscribe to and watch right in the TV app without having to swap over to a third-party app.

During the beta, you can subscribe to Showtime, Starz, Smithsonian, Tastemade, and EPIX, but additional Channels will be available when the new TV app launches.


In the future, Apple plans to add its new TV+ subscription service to the TV app, with TV+ offering all of Apple's original TV shows and movies. The TV app is available on the Apple TV and iOS devices so you can pick up whatever you're watching no matter which device you're on.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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HBO Added to ‘Apple TV Channels’ in Latest iOS 12.3 and tvOS 12.3 Betas

Apple recently unveiled its revamped TV app with a new "Channels" feature that enables users to subscribe to TV networks on an à-la-carte basis and watch them all in the TV app without having to open another app.

Image: The Streamable

When the new TV app became available to test in the iOS 12.3 and tvOS 12.3 betas in late March, subscription options were limited to Showtime, Starz, Smithsonian, and Tastemade. As noted by The Streamable, however, additional channels have been added as of the fourth betas of iOS 12.3 and tvOS 12.3 this week.

The most notable addition is HBO for $14.99 per month, in time for the final three episodes of Game of Thrones, while other recently added channels include Cinemax, EPIX, Sundance Now, Lifetime Movie Club, and UMC.

Image: MacRumors forum member Banglazed

When the new TV app is publicly released on the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV later this month, other networks that will be supported in Apple TV Channels include CBS All Access, Nickelodeon, Mubi, The History Channel Vault, Comedy Central Now, Acorn TV, Britbox, Noggin, MTV Hits, and Shudder.

We recently went hands-on with the revamped TV app:


The TV app will also be available on the Mac starting this fall alongside Apple's TV+ original content streaming service.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12, iOS 12
Tag: HBO
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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Apple Seeds Fourth Beta of tvOS 12.3 to Developers

Apple today seeded the fourth beta of an upcoming tvOS 12.3 update to developers, one week seeding the third beta and a month after releasing tvOS 12.2).

Designed for the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models, the new tvOS 12.3 developer beta can be downloaded onto the Apple TV via a profile that's installed using Xcode. Apple has also released new 7.3 beta software for the third-generation Apple TV.


tvOS 12.3 brings a revamped TV app that was first shown off at Apple's March 25 services-focused event. The TV app is an updated version of the original TV app, providing access to TV shows, movies, sports, news, and more, along with a dedicated section for children's programming.

The TV app offers an updated interface with a fresh look and feel that's more modern. It still has the "Watch Now" section with the "Up Next" feature for keeping track of the TV shows and movies you're watching, and there's a new machine-learning based "For You" feature that surfaces content based on what you've previously watched.


There's a new "Channels" option built in to the app, which is a major part of Apple's new services push. Channels are subscription services that you can subscribe to and watch right in the TV app without having to swap over to a third-party app.

During the beta, you can subscribe to Showtime, Starz, Smithsonian, Tastemade, and EPIX, but additional Channels will be available when the new TV app launches.


In the future, Apple plans to add its new TV+ subscription service to the TV app, with TV+ offering all of Apple's original TV shows and movies. The TV app is available on the Apple TV and iOS devices so you can pick up whatever you're watching no matter which device you're on.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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‘Peanuts in Space’ Short Coming to Apple TV App in May

Apple last year signed a deal with DHX Media and its subsidiary Peanuts Worldwide to develop and produce new Peanuts content, including original series, specials, and shorts, which will be released on Apple's TV platform.

At the time the deal was inked, a short featuring astronaut Snoopy was teased, and now that short is nearing a launch. According to Deadline, "Peanuts in Space: Secrets of Apollo 10" is set to be available through the Apple TV app in May.


Described as a "documentary of sorts," the short aims to solve the mystery of of whether Snoopy was a world famous top-secret astronaut. Director Ron Howard and actor Jeff Goldblum star in the documentary.
Imagine's Ron Howard stars as himself along with Jeff Goldblum as a self-published NASA historian to take on the quest, which lightly spoofs the May 1969 NASA Apollo 10 mission that required the lunar module to skim the moon's surface within 50,000 feet and "snoop around" scouting a site for the upcoming Apollo 11 moon-landing.
On the Apollo 10 mission, NASA and the Apollo 10 crew named the lunar module "Snoopy" and the command module "Charlie Brown." Ahead of the mission, Peanuts creator Charles Schultz had been approached by NASA to incorporate his characters into NASA missions, which is one of the facts that formed the basis for the short film.

Peanuts and NASA in 2018 announced a partnership designed to "share the excitement of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) with the next generation of explorers and thinkers," which is what led to the Snoopy in space content.

"Peanuts in Space" will be the first original Peanuts content coming out on the Apple platform, and since it's launching in May, it appears it will be available independently of Apple's upcoming Apple TV+ streaming service, which isn't set to roll out until the fall.

It sounds like "Peanuts in Space" will be made available for free to everyone in the Apple TV app, much like "Carpool Karaoke: The Series."


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Apple Launches New ‘Apple TV’ YouTube Channel

Apple has launched a new YouTube channel that's dedicated to its TV app, offering up trailers, behind the scenes commentary, interviews, show clips, and more.

Apple appears to have debuted the new channel, which was noticed this morning by MacStories, about a month ago. The channel seems to have launched when Apple announced plans for a revamped Apple TV app and a new Apple TV+ streaming service.


Quite a few videos have been uploaded, many of which are clearly labeled with titles like "Official Trailer," Interview," or "Clip."


Trailers for many popular upcoming movies are included, such as "The Lion King," "The Secret Life Of Pets 2," and "The Joker," along with clips and interviews from "Game of Thrones," "Veep," and more.


The channel features trailers for Carpool Karaoke: The Series, which suggests this is where Apple will share trailers for its original TV shows and movies as the Apple TV+ service's fall launch approaches.

Apple's updated TV app is already available to developers and public beta testers who have installed iOS 12.3 and tvOS 12.3, and it will be available to everyone when those operating system updates launch.

It appears that the Apple TV channel will be used in conjunction with the revamped TV app to promote television content that's available to watch through the TV app.


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Apple Releases Third Public Beta of tvOS 12.3

Apple today seeded the third beta of an upcoming tvOS 12.3 update to its public beta testing group, one day after providing the beta to developers and two weeks after seeding the second public beta.

The tvOS 12.3 public beta can be obtained by going to the Settings app on the Apple TV and navigating to the Software Updates section under "System." "Get Public Beta Updates" will need to be toggled on, and once it is, the Apple TV will download the beta software.

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tvOS 12.3 includes the revamped Apple TV app that Apple debuted at its services-focused event on Monday. The new TV app is a better version of the original TV app, offering up access to TV shows, sports, news, and more in one spot.

There's still a "Watch Now" section with an "Up Next" feature for keeping track of what you're in the middle of watching, but there's a new "For You" feature that recommends new content based on what you've previously watched.

A new "Channels" option lets you subscribe to third-party services like Showtime, Starz, and HBO right within the TV app, and you can even watch all of the content from the services included in Channels right in the TV app without having to open a third-party app.

Channels will include CBS All Access, Starz, Showtime, HBO, Nickelodeon, Mubi, The History Channel Vault, and Comedy Central Now, but during the beta, only Showtime, Starz, Smithsonian, and Tastemade are accessible. You can subscribe in the TV app and get a one-week free trial before you're charged.

The TV app is on the Apple TV and iOS devices, and it's even available on the third-generation Apple TV through an upcoming software update that Apple plans to release. Apple has said the new TV app is coming in May, so we can expect tvOS 12.3 to be released then.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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Apple Seeds Third Beta of tvOS 12.3 to Developers

Apple today seeded the third beta of an upcoming tvOS 12.3 update to developers, two weeks seeding the second beta and three weeks after releasing tvOS 12.2).

Designed for the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models, the new tvOS 12.3 developer beta can be downloaded onto the Apple TV via a profile that's installed using Xcode. There's also a new second beta software update for the third-generation Apple TV model.


tvOS 12.3 brings a revamped TV app that was first shown off at Apple's March 25 services-focused event. The TV app is an updated version of the original TV app, providing access to TV shows, movies, sports, news, and more, along with a dedicated section for children's programming.

The TV app features a refined interface with a fresh look and feel that's more modern. It keeps the "Watch Now" section with the "Up Next" feature for keeping track of the TV shows and movies you're watching, and there's a new machine-learning based "For You" feature that surfaces content based on what you've previously watched.


There's a new "Channels" option built in to the app, which is a major part of Apple's new services push. Channels are subscription services that you can subscribe to and watch right in the TV app without having to swap over to a third-party app.

During the beta, you can subscribe to Showtime, Starz, Smithsonian, Tastemade, and EPIX, but additional Channels will be available when the new TV app launches.


In the future, Apple plans to add its new TV+ subscription service to the TV app, with TV+ offering all of Apple's original TV shows and movies. The TV app is available on the Apple TV and iOS devices so you can pick up whatever you're watching no matter which device you're on.

The new TV app is set to be released in May, so tvOS 12.3 will be in beta testing until then.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 12
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Don't Buy)

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Apple Hires New Head of Documentaries for Apple TV+

Apple has hired Molly Thompson, founder of A&E Indie Films, as its new head of documentaries, reports Variety. A&E Indie Films is the film production unit of A+E networks, where she also served as head of documentary films.

She has produced recent documentaries that include "The Clinton Affair," "Studio 54," and "City of Ghosts," as well as well-known documentaries like "Life, Animated," "Murderball," and "Jesus Camp."


Apple has an extensive video content team working out of Culver City, Los Angeles. Apple has thus far secured the rights to dozens of TV shows and a handful of documentary films, and Apple is clearly aiming to beef up its documentary content offerings with the hiring of Thompson.

Apple's current documentaries include two projects with Oprah focusing on mental health and sexual harassment in the workplace, as well as "The Elephant Queen," a feature-length documentary about an elephant matriarch who leads her herd to find a new watering hole.

A list of all of Apple's TV projects can be found in our guide, and all of Apple's TV and film content will be coming to Apple TV+, Apple's new streaming service set to debut this fall.


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