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Five minutes with Apple TV and I'm sold

It is quite a treat to visit an Apple Store these days, after a year of seemingly relentless product announcements. Tim Cook wasn't joking when he said a couple of years back that Apple had some great things in the pipeline. The new, lightweight MacBook always lures me in to have a tap on those rather unique butterfly keys. The iPhone 6S has peak and pop, which is rather addictive to an owner of last year's 6 plus. Granted, the new Magic Mouse is, well, just a mouse, but I do quite like the new Magic Trackpad. The Apple Watch displays are potentially dangerous for my bank balance.

Yet if there is one product that stands out above all others at the moment then it is the new Apple TV (thoughts on this could change when the iPad Pro comes out).  Released this past week, the device is so intuitive and so easy to use that, unlike its slow and cumbersome predecessor, even my mum could operate it. Indeed, if this were any another company, Apple TV would have a dedicated shop all of its own, and it would be full of people having a fun time playing games and swiping the excellent TV remote to make something happen on screen. But as iMore's Rene Ritchie keeps reminding his readers, Apple never mistakes its products for its business.

Instead, Apple goes for experience and for developing an eco-system, and the Apple retail stores are an extension of the former and a way of realising the latter. Similarly, Apple TV enhances both. I found it was like using a really smooth Wii console, married to an Apple UI that only Cook's company could make. In the short time I used it I asked Siri to skip back 5 seconds in a movie trailer and I delved in to the App Store to try some games - Crossy Road and Asphalt 8. Both have found a new and perhaps more suitable home than on the mobile platforms they have hitherto inhabited. Nintendo will make a killing on releasing Mario on this thing, even if it will eat into sales of Playstations. However, I am guessing this will happen with or without it on tvOS, as Nintendo has for too long prioritised its gaming machines over porting its wonderful catalogue of titles to other platforms. The Apple TV has at least made it "think different". So too the BBC, with iPlayer's launch imminent.

In short, I think the new Apple TV will be another market-distorting device and not only because of its App Store and what developers are likely to put into it.  The product itself is just so fun and so easy to use, in a way not seen of an Apple device since the release of the iPad. It is cliché to suggest perhaps, but Apple TV just works.


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