January 11 is a new Beta Day for Apple, as the company releases new pre-release software for the new Apple TV.
On Monday, Apple seeded the first beta for tvOS 9.2, the platform that runs on the new Apple TV set-top box. With this release, it arrives just over one month since Apple released the public release of tvOS 9.1, which was the first major update to the fourth-generation Apple TV platform.
For developers, the new Apple TV needs to be connected to a computer via a USB-C to USB-A cable, to which the new beta software can be downloaded directly to the box. The new software will be installed via iTunes.
As for what’s new in the software, it’s unknown at this point. However, it’s likely to include software tweaks and performance enhancements behind-the-scenes. tvOS 9.1 was a bigger update, including Siri support for Apple Music. This allowed owners to ask the digital personal assistant to find songs, artists, and other music within the streaming software.
What’s New in tvOS 9.2
Since the release of the new software for Apple’s fourth-generation Apple TV, some noteworthy new features have been discovered:
- Folders: Similar to functionality found in iOS, tvOS 9.2 reveals the ability to group apps on the Home screen in folders.
- Siri: The digital personal assistant has been upgraded to support more languages on the set-top box, including U.S. Spanish (for those in the U.S. only), along with French Canadian (for those in Canada only). In the United Kingdom, UK English, Australian, and U.S. English are now supported.
- App Switcher: The interface for quickly switching apps on the new Apple TV has been altered.
- MapKit: Maps will get support within tvOS apps now, as they officially support MapKit.
- Podcasts: The Podcasts app from Apple is now officially present in tvOS 9.2.
- Bluetooth Keyboards: For those that have been having a less-than-stellar time with text input, the new Apple TV now supports connecting to Bluetooth keyboards by way of tvOS 9.2 beta 1.