Apple TV app debuts on Vizio SmartCast TVs

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Visio SmartCast TVs and Apple TV together at last.
It’s now a breeze to watch Apple TV+ movies and shows on Visio SmartCast TVs.
Photo: Vizio

Vizio SmartCast TVs now supports the Apple TV app. This makes it easier for users of these smart TVs in the US and Canada to watch Apple TV+, the company’s streaming video service.

To sweeten the deal, Apple is offering a free three-month subscription to users of these smart screens.

Watch Epix movies and shows for free through Apple TV app

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Epix is available through the Apple TV app.
Just open the Apple TV app to access Epix streaming content at no charge.
Photo: Apple/Epix

All the streaming content of the cable channel Epix is reportedly free to Apple users until May 2. Original shows like Pennyworth and Godfather of Harlem as well a wide selection of movies are available from Epix through the Apple TV app.

How to use Apple TV app’s new data-saving features

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The Apple TV app gets a raft of new features in iOS 12.3.
The Apple TV app just added new data saving features.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Binge-watching your favorite Apple TV shows on an iPhone is a great way to run through your data plan limits if you’re not careful, so Apple is introducing a way to wrangle in your data slurping habits.

iOS 13.4 beta 2 introduced some new settings to the Apple TV app for iPhone and iPad, giving users the option to control the size of downloads as well as lowering the amount of data used while streaming content. If Apple’s TV app is one of your major entertainment hubs, you’ll want to know how to take advantage of the new features.

LG confirms Dolby Atmos coming to Apple TV app, AirPlay 2 on its Smart TVs this year

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LG UM6X UHD in room
LG confirms Dolby Atmos coming to its TVs via Apple TV app and AirPlay.
Photo: LG

TV maker LG has confirmed it will add Dolby Atmos support to 2018, 2019 and newer 2020 models of selected televisions this year for both the Apple TV app and AirPlay 2.

In a published report Thursday, a company representative told FlatpanelsHD that support for Dolby Atmos will be delivered “later this year.”

What Apple TV+ needs to be a big player in 2020

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What Apple TV+ needs to be a big player in 2020
What changes should Apple make to Apple TV+?
Photo: Apple

Apple TV+ is great. I think it’s done a whole lot right in the sub-3 months since it launched. But, right now, Apple TV+ is what Apple was to Microsoft in the 1990s. Sure, the quality is there, but it’s a tiny bit player next to the likes of Netflix and Disney+. To truly live up to its potential, Apple TV+ needs to make some big strides forward in 2020.

Here’s what I think needs to change.

Apple TV app debuts on Amazon Fire smart TVs in U.S.

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Fire TV Edition Smart TVs
A month since its debut on Amazon Fire Stick devices, the Apple TV App is now available on Fire TV Edition Smart TVs in the U.S.
Photo: Amazon

The Apple TV App is now available on Fire TV Edition Smart TVs in the U.S., slowly increasing its availability on various third-party streaming players and televisions.

The addition includes built-in Alexa voice-command support to ask for AppleTV+ programs and to open the Apple TV app.

iTunes isn’t dead. It’s alive and better than ever [Opinion]

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Apple Music in macOS Catalina
iTunes is being replaced with Apple Music and several other apps.
Photo: Apple

Headlines this week trumpeted the death of iTunes. While these stories made good clickbait, they understandably caused concern for those who used this application to build up extensive music and video libraries. You may be one of the people left wondering what’s going to happen to decades of purchases.

Relax, your music and video collection isn’t going anywhere. It’s actually getting easier to access.

iOS 12.3 inches closer to launch with new beta

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The Apple TV app gets a raft of new features in iOS 12.3.
The Apple TV app gets a raft of new features in iOS 12.3.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The fifth beta for iOS 12.3 was released to developers this morning, arriving just one week after iOS 12.4 beta 4 came out. Apple seeded watchOS 5.2.1 beta 5, tvOS 12.3 beta 5 and macOS 10.14.5 beta 5 to developers as well.

It appears that this beta mostly focuses mostly on performance fixes as Apple readies it for launch soon. iOS 12.3 will probably be the last major update before Apple reveals iOS 13 at WWDC 2019 at the beginning of June.

Peanuts launch to the moon on Apple TV this May

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Peanuts in Space: Secrets of Apollo 10
Lunar module pilot Eugene Cernan had a successful moon mission thanks to Snoopy.
Photo: NASA

Snoopy paved the way for astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to walk on the moon.

How the cartoon beagle figured into NASA’s lunar plans will be the subject of a short “documentary” available next month on the Apple TV app.