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On October 4, 2016, 9to5Mac reported that Apple had phased out the Apple TV 3, with Apple Store employees instructed to pull all units and demo units from store shelves.
Shortly afterwards, Apple took down the purchase page for the Apple TV 3 from its website, with the link redirecting to the purchase page for the Apple TV 4.
The device has no integrated controls and can only be controlled externally, either by an Apple Remote control device (with which it is shipped) using its infrared/bluetooth capability, by the Apple TV Remote app (downloadable from App Store) on i OS devices, such as the i Phone, i Pod Touch, i Pad, and Apple Watch, using its Wi-Fi capability, or by some third-party infrared remotes.
Its Wi-Fi capability is also used to receive digital content from various i OS apps using Air Play or directly from the i Tunes Store, which is then streamed to the TV.
It also plays digital content from the i Tunes Store, Netflix, Hulu, Now TV (UK only), Sling TV, Play Station Vue, Amazon Prime Video, Direct TV, You Tube and Vevo along with HBO Now, Showtime Anytime, Starz and the TV Everywhere portals of several cable and broadcast networks, and the video subscription portals of three of the four major North American sports leagues: MLB.tv, NBA League Pass and
The 4th generation also uses a new operating system, tv OS, with an associated app store, allowing download of third-party apps for video, audio, games, and other content – initially from a limited range of providers on release, with others able to release further apps using new APIs allowing them to do so.
On September 13, 2016, Apple released the tv OS 10 software update for the Apple TV, bringing an all new remote app, single-sign on, dark mode, Home Kit support, and many more features to the 4th generation Apple TV.
On September 12, 2017, Apple announced the fifth generation Apple TV, named Apple TV 4K, which supports 2160p output, HDR10, Dolby Vision, and includes a faster Apple A10X Fusion processor.
The NBCUniversal applications give access to full seasons of the networks' most popular series, with current and past episodes of all series.
NBCUniversal previously made NBC, USA, NBC Sports, and CNBC applications available for download and with the addition of the four new channels, it brings seven of NBCUniversal's networks to Apple TV users.Tim Cook took the stage and said "The future of TV is apps".