Apple is bringing Siri Remote features to the iOS Remote app in early 2016; sees bold future for gaming

Alto's Adventure for Apple TV
Yesterday, Apple released tvOS 9.1 to owners of the new Apple TV. With the new software, support for Apple’s official iOS Remote app was also brought to the table.

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Apple’s iOS Remote app, which has been a longstanding accessory for Apple TV owners who don’t necessarily want to use (or can’t find) the physical Apple TV remote that Apple bundled in the box. According to Apple’s Eddy Cue, speaking with BuzzFeed News, the iOS Remote app is going to get a lot better in the near future.
Cue says that, in the early part of 2016, Apple plans on releasing a “new Apple TV remote app” which will “give you the full functionality of the Siri Remote” right on your iPhone. Seeing as the standard iOS Remote app already provides the necessary functions for the previous generation Apple TVs, Apple’s decision to essentially make a backup, or alternative, remote for the new Apple TV, including all of the features one can find in the Siri Remote included in the new Apple TV’s box, just makes sense.
“We’re working on a new Apple TV remote app that will give you the full functionality of the Siri Remote on your iPhone,” Cue said. “We’re hoping to ship that in the first half of next year.”
That’s not all the good news Cue had to talk about in the interview, though. While streaming content is obviously one huge tentpole for the new Apple TV, Cue says that there’s a big push in games, too. Interestingly enough, Cue points back to the iPhone and the fact that Apple didn’t necessarily position the device as one to play games on, but that gaming on the handheld machine eventually found footing and expanded a great deal. Cue says he’s seeing a similar trend with the new Apple TV already, and that the future for the platform as a gaming unit is very bright.
“What we’re seeing with the new Apple TV is to me very similar to what happened with gaming on the iPhone,” Cue said. “When we first announced the iPhone, we didn’t tout it as a gaming device. But games became a huge part of iPhone, because it turns out that a lot more people than just hardcore gamers love games. We expanded the market. I think the vast majority of people around the world probably aren’t looking to buy an Xbox or PlayStation. But that doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy playing games. I think Apple TV expands the gaming market to those people.”
Finally, Cue touched on developer support for the brand new platform that is tvOS and the App Store that’s available to customers. Cue highlighted that the new App Store already has over 2,000 apps available for owners of the new Apple TV, and that more are coming thanks to “tremendous” developer interest.
“Already we have over 2,000 apps live in the store. And on the customer side, things are going great. What we’ve found is that a little over half of transactions are coming from people upgrading from the last Apple TV and just about the other half are coming from new customers that are buying their first Apple TV.”
What do you think of the new Siri Remote features coming to the iOS Remote app? If you own a new Apple TV, have you been playing a lot of games on it?
[via BuzzFeed]


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