Apple will host its annual developers conference WWDC in less than 3 months from now. On June 4, the company is expected to unveil its latest operating systems including tvOS 12 for Apple TV. These are the new features that we hope to see in tvOS 12.
tvOS 12 for Apple TV
WWDC18 is the 29th annual developers conference. Apple is expected to announce major updates to all of its four operating systems – iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS.
The company is currently putting the final touches on tvOS 11.3 that will likely debut in a few weeks from now but we can look forward to the more extensive tvOS 12 update at WWDC18.
So, what can we expect? Apple has kept the cards close to its chest this year – at least for tvOS – but has publicly commented on its plans for original TV content. We hope to learn more soon but perhaps WWDC18 is a little too early. On another note, references to picture-in-picture and HLG HDR support have been discovered in tvOS. Apple has also yet to make Siri, universal search, and the TV app available in most regions of the world.
Airplay 2, HomePod integration & Atmos
Airplay 2 has been delayed. The new wireless audio platform was briefly included in a beta version of tvOS 11.3 but was later pulled. It may or may not show up with the public release of tvOS 11.3 but would be awkward to announce it again at WWDC18 considering that it was unveiled at last year’s conference.
Apple recently introduced the HomePod but so far there is no link to Apple TV. Amazon and Google allow users to turn on/off TVs and search for content via their respective voice enabled speakers. Apple TV already has deep support for HomeKit so it should be technically possible, if Apple decides to go ahead with it.
Other manufacturers have also started flirting with bringing certain HDMI 2.1 features to existing products via firmware upgrades. This is allowed under the HDMI 2.1 specification. One feature that would greatly benefit Apple TV would be HMDI 2.1’s QMS (Quick Media Switching) to eliminate the short black screen when switching between different frame rates.
And lastly, we hope that Apple will improve audio quality by bringing Dolby Atmos support to tvOS. The company has said that Dolby Atmos is “on the roadmap” but that was in September 2017 and nothing has surfaced so far.
We are unlikely to see new TV hardware at WWDC18. Apple TV 4K was launched in September 2017.
Apple takes the stage on June 4 to kick off WWDC18.