New Apple TV loses to Roku in U.S.

tvOS 9.2 has arrived, and boy is it good.
The Apple TV had a surge of sales last year.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The fourth generation Apple TV experienced the largest increase in unit sales last year among streaming media players but it hasn’t been good enough to supplant Roku as the top streamer in the U.S. 

Apple TV’s biggest weakness appears to be its price point. New research shows that smaller stick streamers made up half of last year’s sales and Apple’s competition reaped the rewards.

Why Apple is optimistic, a one-year Apple Watch appraisal, and killer Instagram tips

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Why is Apple so optimistic?
Why is Apple so optimistic?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple’s executive team is optimistic about the company’s future, despite a bleak earnings call. And why wouldn’t they be? Apple’s slump brought in more money than most other tech companies out there.

Read all about the positive spin in this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine, along with a trick to making your iOS folders look round with no jailbreak required, a frank appraisal of the Apple Watch one year in, 8 killer Instagram tips, the world’s biggest Apple Museum and much, much more.

Here are the top stories for this week.

How to use your Apple Watch to control your Apple TV

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Control your Apple TV from your Apple Watch.
Control your Apple TV from your Apple Watch.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

What a magical world we live in. We can lift our Apple Watch up to listen to music, talk to our friends, and (yes) even tell the time.

If you’re an Apple TV user, you can send your Apple Watch tunes to the big screen, and you can even control your Apple TV right from your wrist.

Simply magical. Here’s how to control your Apple TV with your Apple Watch.

New MacBooks, Prince’s legacy, Apple Watch tips and more

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New MacBooks have us a bit underwhelmed.
New MacBooks have us a bit underwhelmed.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Faster processors, speedier memory, longer battery life and a rose gold finish — what more do we need from a new MacBook? We love Apple gear, but it’s possible we’re getting addicted to the “wow” factor.

Add that to Prince’s untimely death, and the dearth of streaming options for listening to his music, and we’ve got a lot to talk about. It’s all in this week’s free Cult of Mac Magazine, along with reviews of Amazon’s new Echo smart speakers and 12 awesome Apple Watch tricks that prove Cupertino’s wearable doesn’t need a “killer app.”

Here are this week’s top stories.

Now you can try Apple’s latest batch of betas

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Get your iOS device up to date fast and easy.
Get your iOS device up to date fast and easy.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Members of Apple’s public beta testing program can now get their hands on all the new software updates Apple dropped on developers yesterday.

New betas for iOS, tvOS, watchOS and OS X have been seeded to the public, bringing a bunch of bug fixes for every Apple platform, as well as some new features on iPhone.