tvOS 13 positions Apple TV as a real gaming console

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WWDC 2019 tvOS 13
Apple wants to be a big player to gamers.
Screenshot: Apple

WWDC 2019 bug Apple promised support for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One game controllers when it releases a redesigned tvOS this fall.

CEO Tim Cook said Apple TV will be more “entertaining and personal” as he unveiled changes to the company’s video ecosystem Monday during the Worldwide Developers Conference.

At launch, tvOS 13 will also include full-screen previews of shows and individualized support for each person in the household to build their own lists of shows, movies and even Apple Music.

Apple TV will also include new screensavers of ocean life shot by the BBC’s Natural History unit. And Apple Music on Apple TV will also include lyrics appearing to the beat of the song.

The cranked-up rumor mill leading into today’s WWDC 2019 announcements offered very little about tvOS. Cook’s very brief Apple TV+ announcements quickly got lost in an avalanche of new software features, like improvements to the native iPhone camera and a new operating system for the iPad, called iPadOS.

Apple put up a star-studded spectacle for Apple TV+ in March, when it formally announced the streaming service and paraded actors and directors, from Jennifer Aniston to Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey. An updated Apple TV app also launched this month. So, depending on how into Apple TV you are, today’s news offered little to generate buzz.

We still don’t have an exact launch date for Apple TV+ (beyond sometime this fall). And we still don’t know how much it will cost to stream Apple’s original content.

First Apple TV+ trailer: For All Mankind

Perhaps the most exciting moment of the Apple TV portion of WWDC 2019? A sneak preview of the trailer for space race thriller series For All Mankind, created by Ronald D. Moore.

The series offers a twist: The Soviets make it to the moon first and discover water. NASA must now play catch-up and reimagine its mission to regain the advantage with colonization.