Hands-On With tvOS 14: Picture in Picture, 4K YouTube, HomeKit and More

Apple at WWDC introduced a new version of tvOS, the software that's designed to run on the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV models. tvOS updates are often more minor in scale than iOS, watchOS, and macOS updates, but tvOS 14 has some useful new features.



Apple in tvOS 13 introduced a Picture in Picture option for the ‌Apple TV‌ app that allowed TV and movie content from the app to be watched while doing other things on the ‌Apple TV‌, and in tvOS 14, that functionality is expanding.

Picture in Picture now works across tvOS, but it's worth noting that third-party apps need to implement support so apps like YouTube don't work with the feature at the current time.

AirPlay works with Picture in Picture so you can ‌AirPlay‌ video content from iOS apps like YouTube, Disney+, and more to the ‌Apple TV‌ and then watch them in windowed mode while you play a game or use a workout app.

Speaking of YouTube, the YouTube app in tvOS 14 will support 4K video streaming for the first time, allowing for higher-resolution content to be viewed. YouTube presumably needs to implement support, so the feature isn't functional as of yet. The ‌Apple TV‌ also supports sharing and viewing 4K videos taken with the iPhone.

With Audio Sharing for the AirPods, two people can connect their AirPods to the ‌Apple TV‌ to watch a TV show or movie without bothering the other people in the room.

tvOS 14 introduces support for multi-user gaming for Apple Arcade, so when you swap profiles, the TV will keep track of each person's levels, leaderboards, and more. Apple also added support for the Xbox Elite 2 Wireless Controller and the Xbox Adaptive Controller.

In tvOS 14, you can choose a specific screensaver group like ocean, space, or cities rather than having tvOS choose randomly, and there's a whole new HomeKit feature for the Control Center.

If you use the remote to navigate to the Control Center and tap on the Home app icon you can see your ‌HomeKit‌ accessories and access scenes. This view also includes camera feeds from ‌HomeKit‌ connected cameras, so you can watch your home security video in full screen on the TV or in Picture in Picture mode.

The ‌Apple TV‌ can even let you know when someone is at the door if you have a HomeKit-connected video doorbell, popping up the video when someone rings the bell.

tvOS 14 is available for developers and, as of today, public beta testers. It will see a few months of testing before Apple releases it to the public in the fall.

Related Roundup: Apple TV
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

canhaz Avatar
20 months ago

I bought an Apple TV 4th generation, and found that Siri Remote and the User Interface such a bloomin' mess, than I activated my free one-year Apple TV Plus subscription , then promptly went back to my Apple TV 3 (where the Plus subscription works without any problem) and the aluminum remote. Sorry, folks. That remote and that interface needs to be totally renovated -- I don't care how much TVos releases there are; until Apple fixes those 2 mess-takes, I'll stick with Apple TV 3.

You know what? Watching a TV show shouldn't be a complicated run-around fiasco that ends up with you throwing the remote across the room.
I much prefer the new touch remote. After a small learning curve it feels great to use. Swiping is a pleasure. Slap a silicone case on it and the ergonomics are almost perfect.

My only wish Is that it had a way to mute. Lol.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tmanto02 Avatar
20 months ago
4K YouTube. About bloody time. This went on long enough. So deceiving buying a Apple TV 4K, watching content tagged as 4K on YouTube and getting served 1080p content
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dammit Cubs Avatar
20 months ago
youtube in 4K ...finally arriving in 2020....what a time to be alive (sarcasm)
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Gator5000e Avatar
20 months ago
No sign of the spattial sound for the Air Pod Pros? That is the feature I am looking forward to the most.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
KooL BeAnZ Avatar
20 months ago

Some YouTube videos are starting to have AV1 option for <=1080p but for >=1440p they automatically switch to VP9. Best way to find out is turn on 'stats for nerds' in YouTube to show video and audio codecs but my guess is VP9 hardware decoding was always present on recent devices but gimped by software as is also the case with recent Intel and AMD GPU based products.
Here’s hoping iPhones & iPads get 1440p HDR 120Hz support.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gleepskip Avatar
20 months ago

Yeah i‘be looked there and checked the account (and even logged out and back in again). Nest cam shows on Home on iPadOS but not showing on tvOS despite being on the beta
Maybe there's a bug and it'll be fixed in next week's patch.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

maxresdefault

Review: M1 Max MacBook Pro After Three Months

Wednesday January 19, 2022 11:30 am PST by
It's now been a few months since the M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro models launched in October, and MacRumors video editor Dan Barbera has been using one of the new machines since they debuted. Over on the MacRumors YouTube channel, Dan has shared a three month review of his MacBook Pro to see how it has held up over time and how it's changed his workflow. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube ...
iphone se 2020 top

New iPhone SE Likely to Launch in April Based on Production Timeframe

Wednesday January 19, 2022 6:44 am PST by
Apple suppliers will begin producing display panels for the third-generation iPhone SE this month, with final assembly of the device likely to start in March, according to information shared by display industry consultant Ross Young. Based on this production timeframe, Young believes the third-generation iPhone SE is likely to launch in the second half of April, or perhaps in early May at...
AirPods 3 New Firmware Feature

Apple Updates AirPods 3 Firmware to Version 4C170

Tuesday January 18, 2022 11:46 am PST by
Apple today released a new 4C170 firmware update for the AirPods 3, an update from the prior 4C165 that was made available in December. Apple does not offer details on what's included in new firmware updates for the AirPods‌, so we don't know what improvements or bug fixes the new firmware brings. There is no standard way to upgrade the ‌AirPods‌‌ software, but firmware is...
iPad Air Feature 2 green

New Apple Products Filed in Regulatory Database, Likely Including New iPhone SE and iPad Air

Tuesday January 18, 2022 6:11 am PST by
Apple today filed unreleased iPhone and iPad models in the Eurasian Economic Commission database, as spotted by French blog Consomac. The filings likely represent the rumored third-generation iPhone SE, fifth-generation iPad Air, and potentially more. The unreleased iPhone models have the identifiers A2595, A2783, and A2784, while the unreleased iPad models have the identifiers A2588, A2589, ...
iphone 5g mmwave

U.S. Airlines Warn of 'Catastrophic' Crisis With Impending 5G Rollout, AT&T and Verizon Agree to Delay Around Airports

Tuesday January 18, 2022 10:35 am PST by
Verizon and AT&T's upcoming rollout of new C-Band 5G technology could cause chaos and lead to widespread delays of passenger and cargo flights, major U.S. airlines said on Monday in a letter sent to the White House National Economic Council, the FAA, and the FCC (via Reuters). "Unless our major hubs are cleared to fly, the vast majority of the traveling and shipping public will essentially...
microsoft office icons

Microsoft Releases Office for Mac Update With Full Apple Silicon Support in Excel

Tuesday January 18, 2022 4:15 am PST by
Microsoft has released a new version of its Office for Mac productivity suite that includes an updated Excel app with 100% native support for Apple silicon machines. According to the release notes accompanying version 16.57, Excel will now run natively on Macs powered by Apple's M1-series processors without having to use the Rosetta 2 translation layer, which means anyone using a Mac with an ...
appleeducation

Apple's US Education Store Now Requires Institution Verification to Buy Discounted Products

Wednesday January 19, 2022 2:22 am PST by
Apple is now requiring that customers in the United States verify that they're active students, teachers, or staff members at an educational institution in order to access education discounts on products. Previously, little verification was needed for customers to purchase products through Apple's education store in the United States. Apple's education stores offer models of the iPad and Mac ...
iPhone 14 Mock pill and hole thumb

ProMotion Now Expected to Remain Exclusive to iPhone 14 Pro Models, Not Expand to Entire Lineup

Sunday January 16, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Continuing the tradition set with the iPhone 13 Pro, only the highest-end iPhone 14 models will feature Apple's ProMotion display technology, according to a respected display analyst. Ross Young, who on multiple occasions has detailed accurate information about Apple's future products, said in a tweet that ProMotion will not be expanded to the entire iPhone 14 lineup and will remain...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID

Rumored iPhone 14 Pro Feature Delayed Until Next Year

Wednesday January 19, 2022 3:00 am PST by
Apple's long-rumored under-display Face ID technology will not be coming to the iPhone 14 Pro, according to recent reports. Based on the latest rumors, it now looks unlikely that the 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro and 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max will feature Face ID technology under the display as several reports claimed over the past year. Display industry consultant Ross Young, who often reveals ...