Apple’s Spring Loaded event brought a fast and furious pace of announcements, including a new iMac, AirTags, and Podcasts Subscription service, even a new iPhone color. But Apple still found time to fix one of the biggest gripes we have in any of Apple products: Apple TV’s Siri remote.
The Apple TV 4K itself isn’t a huge upgrade over the prior model. It brings an A12 Bionic processor (versus the A10X), high-frame-rate HDR and Dolby Vision video to enable smooth 60fps viewing. iPhone users can also use their handset’s light sensor to compare the color balance to compare color balance to “industry-standard specifications used by cinematographers worldwide” and automatically adjust your TV’s video output without needing to fiddle with menus and settings.
But the real reason to upgrade is the all-new Siri remote. Somewhat ironically, the Apple TV remote looks a lot like the pre-Siri remote, with a black-and-silver aluminum design sporting large buttons that are easy to see. The trackpad has been replaced with a new circular clickpad that offers five-way navigation for more accurate selection and control, but if you liked the old way, it’s still touch-enabled.
The outer ring doubles as a jog dial for quickly scrubbing through movies and TV shows, while the Siri button has been moved to the side to prevent accidental presses. And you also get a power button and a mute button like, you know, an actual remote.
The Apple TV 4K starts at the same $179 for 32GB of storage and $199 for 64GB of storage. The Apple TV HD, which hasn’t been updated, also comes with the new Siri remote and is $149 for 32GB of storage. The all-new Siri remote is also available separately for $59. Preorders begin Friday and will ship in the second half of May.
Michael Simon has been covering Apple since the iPod was the iWalk. His obsession with technology goes back to his first PC—the IBM Thinkpad with the lift-up keyboard for swapping out the drive. He's still waiting for that to come back in style tbh.