Apple TV owners have been expecting the new Apple TV Remote app since Eddy Cue acknowledged its development. The app is finally available for testing. The Apple TV Remote App beta is available directly as an IPA installable via iTunes.The Remote App is currently only available to registered Apple developers.
According to Apple’s release notes, the Remote app has been designed to bring the best of Siri Remote to Apple iOS devices. The app will allow users to navigate the Apple TV interface and also use it to paly basic games. If you are a registered Apple developer, you can go to Apple’s developer page to download the Apple TV Remote IPA. The IPA will allow you to install the Remote app directly to your iOS device via iTunes. The Apple TV Remote app requires an iPhone that running iOS 9.3.2 or later along with a 4th generation TV running tvOS 9.2.1 or later.
The new Remote app also includes a Game Mode with simple gaming controls that can be used on your iOS device when it’s in landscape orientation. The software remote can take advantage of the accelerometer and gyroscope of your iOS device to allow for motion controls in games.
Afte you have installed the Remote app to your smartphone you will need to pair it with you TV. To pair, you will need to connect you iPhone and your Apple TV to a Wi-Fi network. Then all you need to do is simply launch the app and it will automatically detect your TV. Here are the features that are made possible by the new Remote app:
- Navigating Apple TV with touch gestures.
- Asking Siri to find something great to watch, play, or listen to.
- Dictating text, including usernames and passwords.
- Entering text with the keyboard.
- Playing games using the accelerometer and gyroscope on your iOS device.
- Game Mode with simplified game controls, available while holding your iOS device in a landscape orientation.
- Controlling the movie, TV show, or song that’s currently playing on the Now Playing screen.
Of course, most of these features are already available in the hardware version of the Siri Remote, but both remotes have their own distinct advantages and disadvantages. Tactile feedback is the main advantage of the hardware remote. That is something which cannot be replicated in the Remote app. This makes the physical remote better for gaming. One main disadvantage of the software remote is the lack of volume buttons. Depending on your current setup, this could be a significant disadvantage when compared to the hardware Siri Remote.