It looks like all of the rumors about a new Apple TV of sorts have turned out to be true after all, with Tim Cook himself (the Apple CEO in case you just crawled out from under a rock somewhere) saying, “Our vision for TV is simple and perhaps a little provocative. We believe the future of television is apps.” Basically, what makes up the brand new Apple TV? A modern OS known as tvOS would definitely help, in addition to powerful hardware, a new user experience, developer tools, and of course, an app store – hey, those are the marketing terms that Apple used. The hardware’s form factor remains the same, but the remote seems to have undergone an overhaul.

Basically, the remote control of the new Apple TV comes with a glass surface on top, and it intends to take advantage of both voice as well as touch in order to interact with it. Whenever Siri voice search is invoked, the results will be shown layered on top of the current screen.

As for tvOS, it will rely on selected common technologies with iOS such as Metal, and certain tools like Xcode will be used, too. Initial apps that are ready to kick into action are Netflix, Hulu and HBO Now. Once you get bored of watching shows, there is the traditional fallback of games to rely on when it comes to killing time. Guitar Hero, Shadowmatic, Crossy Road – all of them will be available, although there is also an exclusive title known as “Beat Sports” from Activision.

The Apple TV does seem to have taken the next step in the evolution of set top boxes of sorts, where it will merge the aspects of other TV boxes (hardware and apps), although there is voice control on both Android TV and Amazon. Playing to Apple’s strengths, the Apple TV’s UI does look more polished right from the get go, and the apps have the perception of better quality – which will most probably be proven right if past performance were to be of any indication.

Other hardware specifications of the Apple TV include having it powered by a 64-bit A8 processor, 802.11ac Wi-Fi with MiMo, an IR receiver, Ethernet and HDMI ports, alongside Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity. As for the remote itself, it will have a battery life of approximately 3 months per charge, sporting a built-in accelerometer and gyroscope, volume control capability, and of course, Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity. You will be able to choose from 32GB and 64GB models which will retail for $149 and $199, respectively, while the current Apple TV will go for $69. It will ship in more than 80 countries – how is that for a banging start?

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