Apple usually has a big, glossy, presentation when it wants to unveil its latest products, but this time around, it introduced several new products with just a press release. The departure of Apple’s head of industrial design, Evans Hankey, was announced yesterday, sending shockwaves through the company and created speculation (which has not been substantiated) that not everyone in Cupertino is happy with the current direction.
In this article, we are focusing on the 2022 Apple TV 4K. It’s Apple’s 3rd generation 4K video streaming device, but the 7th model overall since the original Apple TV was introduced by Steve Jobs in 2007. Does anyone remember Steve calling the Apple TV project, “just a hobby“?
Let’s examine several several changes and improvements over the previous generation 2021 Apple TV 4K. Here’s what’s new:
- The processor has been upgraded from A12 Bionic to A15 Bionic for faster command response, menu navigation, and smoother gameplay.
- The 32GB storage option has been eliminated. The 64GB option is being retained and a new 128GB storage option has been added.
- The Lighting Connector has been dropped in favor of a USB-C connector on the Siri Remote.
Tip: HDMI and USB-C cables are not provided, and require separate purchases.
- The Apple TV 4K box now has a more compact size at 1.2 x 3.66 x 3.66 inches. It weighs half as much, but we’re not sure why.
The best news for consumers is lower prices for double the storage. Apple has dropped the Ethernet port on its lowest priced model to further reduce costs for people only connecting via WiFi.
The 2022 Apple 4K TVs arrive in two variants, which Apple is calling:
- Apple TV 4K with Wi-Fi
- Apple TV 4K with Wi-Fi + Ethernet
The 64GB version with Wi-Fi is priced at $129, and the 128GB version with both Wi-Fi + Ethernet is priced at $149. Both are available for Pre-Order. Delivery Availability is expected to begin on November 4th, 2022.
Tip: Both versions of the 3rd Generation Apple TV 4K are packaged with the Siri Remote. The remote functions and looks the same as before but has USB-C port for charging instead of Lightning. A USB-C charging cable is not included.
Should you upgrade?
If you have the 2021 Apple TV 4K your investment is safe for another year. Improvements are marginal and unless you need the extra storage for movie purchases we don’t think the additional support for HDR10+ justifies a new purchase. Spend that money on movies or better speakers.
We were hoping to see audio improvements with support for hi-res audio (up to 24-bit/192kHz), now that Apple Music supports it. But it seems the wait will be a bit longer. Streaming Apple Music via Apple TV 4K is capped at 16-bit/48kHz. Despite our enthusiasm, the average person is unlikely to hear a difference between hi-res audio and CD quality (16-bit/44.1kHZ).
|Apple TV 4K||Apple TV 4K with WiFi||Apple TV 4K with WiFi and Ethernet|
|Processor||A12 Bionic chip||A15 Bionic chip||A15 Bionic chip|
|Wi-Fi||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6 with MIMO||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6 with 2×2 MIMO||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6 with 2×2 MIMO|
|simultaneous dual band (2.4GHz and 5GHz)||–||–|
|Thread networking support||Yes||–||Yes|
|Siri Remote||Yes (lightning for charging)||Yes (USB-C for charging)||Yes (USB-C for charging)|
|Charging cable included||Yes (lightning)||–||–|
|Weight||15 oz (425g)||7.3 oz (208g)||7.5 oz (214g)|
Apple TV 4K Features
For those that aren’t familiar with Apple TV 4K media streamers, here is a rundown of its features as they stand as of the publication date of this article.
Apple TV 4K works seamlessly with other Apple devices, starting with a magical setup process with iPhone and effortless control at any time with the Apple TV Remote in Control Center. The deep integration of Apple hardware, software, and services with Apple TV 4K unlocks an unparalleled experience that brings the best of the Apple ecosystem to the living room.
Apple Music offers access to 100 million songs, curated playlists, and music videos. Additional features include autoplay, time-synced lyrics, lossless audio, and immersive Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos.
Apple TV+ offers drama and comedy series, feature films, documentaries, and kids and family entertainment, including this year’s Oscar Best Picture winner, “CODA”; record-breaking Emmy Award winner “Ted Lasso”.
Other shows and movies include:
- Bad Sisters
- Mythic Quest
Apple TV+ also offers live sports, including “Friday Night Baseball,” and Major League Soccer matches are coming in early 2023.
Apple Arcade on Apple TV 4K features premium games, with new titles and new or updated content, added weekly, all without ads or in-app purchases. Players can pair popular game controllers. Some titles include “NBA 2K23 Arcade Edition” and “Jetpack Joyride 2,” “Sneaky Sasquatch,” and “Warped Kart Racers”. A new multiuser mode is available for select games.
Apple Fitness+ is an award-winning fitness and wellness service designed for all users, to help them live a healthier day. Apple TV 4K users can enjoy workout content in 4K Ultra High Definition. There are over 3,000 studio-style workouts and meditations led by a diverse and inclusive team of trainers.
iCloud Shared Photo Library
With iCloud Shared Photo Library on Apple TV, everyone in the family will be able to enjoy everyone’s photos together on the big screen. Cross-device connectivity on Apple TV 4K will enable developers to integrate personalized experiences between their iPhone and Apple Watch apps with Apple TV.
Users can continue to enjoy SharePlay by starting a FaceTime session on iPhone or iPad and watching a TV show or movie on Apple TV to stay completely in sync — ensuring everyone catches a movie’s dramatic reveal or a show’s punchline at the same moment. With shared playback controls, including using the Siri Remote, anyone in the SharePlay session can play, pause, or jump ahead.
Smart Home Hub
Apple TV 4K can also function as a smart home hub via Wi-Fi (Ethernet is also available on the 128GB model). It securely connects to compatible smart home accessories, such as Apple HomeKit cameras, lights, shades, and more. Apple TV 4K is also a building block for Matter, the new smart home connectivity standard that enables a wide variety of accessories to work together seamlessly across platforms, helping to fulfill the true vision of a smart home.
As a home hub, Apple TV 4K offers a private, secure, and convenient way to control smart home accessories, including allowing users to view compatible cameras on the TV screen.
tvOS and Siri
New features coming to the Apple TV experience with tvOS 16 include updates to Siri that makes it easier to use voice to control Apple TV and interact with the results. Siri on Apple TV features a complete redesign, and will be able to recognize each user’s voice, so they can easily access their movies, shows, music, games, and apps, and pick up where they left off. By using the Siri Remote and asking “What should I watch?” users can get tailored recommendations
Tip: Siri support for Apple TV has expanded to Chile, Finland, and South Africa, and will launch in Denmark, Luxembourg, and Singapore later this year (2022).
The new Apple TV 4K uses nearly 30 percent less power than the previous generation while providing expanded performance. The efficiency gains of A15 Bionic eliminate the need for an internal fan, resulting in a more compact design and contributing to a 25 percent reduction in carbon footprint over the previous generation.
Price & Availability
Both new Apple TV 4K (3rd gen models) are expected to ship November 4, 2022 at the following prices. Pre-ordering is available now at apple.com.
- 2022 Apple TV 4K with Wi-Fi (64GB) – $129
- 2022 Apple TV 4K with Wi-Fi + Ethernet (128GB) – $149
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