Thursday, December 7, 2023 in tvOS 17.2

Benjamin Mayo (MacRumors):

Apple will discontinue the standalone iTunes Movies and iTunes TV Shows apps on the Apple TV box, starting with tvOS 17.2 The warning message seen above has started appearing in the release candidate version of tvOS 17.2 beta, released yesterday.


Apple has updated the TV app in 17.2 in preparation of the migration away from the standalone iTunes videos app, bringing across some functionality that was previously missing in TV. That includes things like filtering by genre in purchased tab, and the inclusion of box sets in the store listings.

John Gruber:

It’s a good simplification overall: Apple’s own content — both iTunes purchases and TV+ streaming content — is in the TV app.

But now you really can’t avoid the streaming content.

Joe Rosensteel:

The issues that I have suggested Apple should resolve:

  1. Unify media and apps into one interface, with the ability to pin favorite apps.
  2. Reduce the amount of Apple TV+ promotion in the interface, particularly for non-subscribers.
  3. Properly personalized recommendations based on viewing habits.
  4. Handle live TV through a unified programming guide, like Amazon does, instead of pretending the only live TV is live sports.

The new interface miraculously resolves none of these things.

Upon upgrading to 17.2, and opening the TV app for the first time, you’re still treated to the same behavior I’ve bemoaned in the past where the TV defaults to showing the Apple TV+ view asking me to “Come back for new Apple Originals” with Jason Sudekis’ mustachioed face right next to it. There’s no more Ted Lasso, fellas. Let it go.

There’s also a new sidebar with Apple TV+ and MLS Season Pass elements that can’t be hidden. As he says, Apple wants to “pretend that the universe revolves around Apple TV+ and consider all other streamers as ancillary add-ons.”


Update (2023-12-08): Adam Chandler:

Eddie cue when unveiling the modern Appletv OS said the future of TV is apps. He was right but Apple has chosen to put all of their video into one app. This is user hostile. If you dislike soccer, sports, TV+ and just want to watch a TV show you own from iTunes, you have only one place to go. I want the choice to “uninstall” AppleTV MLS but I can’t do that.

Scott Anguish:

Really disappointed that the iTunes movie store app is going to be going away in 17.2 tvOS.

It’s far and away a better movie purchasing (wishlist) and viewing (able to see descriptions and previews for a movie). It’s much faster than the library in the TV app.

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Wasn't the dig against iTunes was that it tried to do too much?

This really confuses me - we begged for years that iTunes was a bloated mess that tried to do way too much poorly, and now that they're disaggregating stuff and putting it where it logically belongs - that's bad?

And while an evolution from the "grid of icons" would be nice, it works. I don't see any of this Apple TV+ pressure that's being discussed. It's an icon like any other app (probably an icon I can't remove), but on my AppleTV's it's just that - an icon. It never puts stuff on my screen, it never puts up splash screens or come-ons, there's nothing in settings pushing me to buy services (AHEM iPhone!). If anything, the AppleTV is by far the least pushy and most polite Apple device I have. Sad that we have to compare them at all - remember when the worst thing in the world was QuickTime Pro?

Ah.... the I was thinking the home screen, as I never touch - my misunderstanding. Now I see the problem, since it's ground zero for pushing AppleTV+. Thus the terrible conflicts Apple pushed on itself by deciding to be a "services" company rather than user-focused.

I absolutely have my and Music.apps chock full of stuff I have never watched or wanted to listen to first load. It is as annoying as others describe, but so very much worse on my actually Apple TV that I use in my classroom where elementary students get exposed to things I don't want them to see or ask about when I just wanted to throw on The Lorax when subbing or to play some Kids Bop when they work on a project. Why can't I have something pinned, from my library? Why can't these apps respect the restrictions on the Apple TV itself which are super-strict (like for the kids)? Why? Because Apple doesn't give a fuck. They just want me to buy more content.

The best thing about Apple TV+ is that I'm no longer paying for it (hat tip: price increase of Apple One). This means not ever opening the again, for I have gone back to torrents and it is glorious. The ultimate UI is the Finder, the new content is at the top because Finder lets me set it that way. macOS, far superior to iOS, and light years ahead of iPadOS, let me download VLC to play the .mkv file of season 3 episode 3 of "Slow Horses" after work last night. When Apple finally stops this from happening in macOS for under the guise of "security", I will switch to Linux where I will still do the same actions.

The great decline started a while ago, but this is where everything will be soon: exactly were everything was circa 2007, only with faster CPUs and double-density screens.

Apple and everyone else gave up on trying to do things well and are just focused on selling more shit. Piracy for the win because it's easier, and now, so much cheaper! (Also, kid safe 😉)

Rackham the Red

Now imagine VLC and a torrent client on your phone, and then being able to cast that content to a TV without any medling "For You" interface.

That's what I've had for a decade or so

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