One of the major announcements at WWDC earlier this month was Continuity, a set of features that tightly integrate iOS devices and Macs. These features will reportedly also be available on the Apple TV this fall, extending this tight integration across all products in the Apple ecosystem.
Continuity features include:
- The ability to receive and answer calls and SMSes from Macs and iPad.
- Handoff, that lets users seamlessly switch between iPhone, iPad and Mac apps, without interrupting their work.
- An improved Personal Hotspot that is available on your Mac or iPad when your iPhone is close by.
Evidence of Continuity coming to the Apple TV was discovered in the form of a notification that appears on Macs running OS X Yosemite:
While it’s not clear how the integration would work, 9to5Mac lays out a number of cases where Handoff between iOS and Apple TV apps would be useful:
Instead of needing to use AirPlay, Continuity and Handoff could technically allow a person to begin watching a movie on their iPad or iPhone, walk into their house, and that content will immediately and automatically begin playing on the Apple TV instead.
The same technology could be used for automatically handing off an iTunes Radio playlist, a song from iTunes Match or iTunes in the Cloud, or even photos from the new iCloud Photo Library feature.
An imaginable scenario is a user watching a video on Netflix or Vevo on their iPad and then being able to automatically continue doing so on their Apple TV.
AirPlay already lets you stream videos from your iPhone to the Apple TV, but the interaction mechanism here would be a little different, and no user action would be required on the iPhone. Handoff requires Bluetooth 4.0 for the proximity based features, and the new Apple TV Software Update 7.0 isn’t available for the Apple TV 2nd ten, which doesn’t have Bluetooth 4.
Are you looking forward to Handoff and Continuity features on your Apple TV? What would be the most useful application of this feature?