What the tvOS 10 Update Means for Content Owners

By Chris Smith on June 17, 2016

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco began Monday, June 13 and wrapped up today. As always, Apple didn't disappoint with their announcements and gave us some sweet new treats to look forward to on the Apple TV!

Here’s a breakdown of this year’s top tvOS 10 updates and how those will significantly improve the end user experience and create new opportunities for content owners on Apple TV.

Improved Siri search to increase discovery and build new audiences

The new tvOS 10 update makes everyone’s favorite AI more universal and relevant. With this new release, Siri will be able to search through all content on Apple TV and deliver results across the entire library of available content.

From the official release : “There are over 6,000 apps to enjoy on your Apple TV including over 1,300 video channels, which are even more fun to watch with the new Siri features combined with single sign-on,” said Eddy Cue, Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services at Apple.

With a much larger database of content combined with Siri’s new ability to search by topic or theme, results will be more precise and comprehensive across the entire library of content available on Apple TV. Users can ask for “Business ideas and trends” and find Entrepreneur Network or search for “live polo games” and discover Chukker TV. Think of this as the new video SEO.

How does Siri know how to find your content? When Zype works with our customers to submit their app to Apple TV, customers fill out a questionnaire that allows them to create keywords (containing up to 100 characters) for their channel. Once the app is live, when a user asks Siri for certain topics or themes like “crossbow” or “hunting”, Siri will pick up those keywords and show results for relevant channels like Above The Game. This allows Apple TV content owners to reach specific target markets without having to spend money on marketing.

This new opportunity for organic discovery via video search optimization helps strengthen video businesses. Just like with Google, potential fans now have the chance to find or stumble upon your custom Apple TV app. And with more accurate answers, suggestions, and recommendations from Siri, dwell time increases along with the opportunity to increase paying subscribers, build awareness, and protect against churn.

Single Sign-On marks the shift toward TV Everywhere

The tvOS 10 update will also make setting up an account hassle-free with single sign-on (on behalf of those who misspell their complex passwords due to strong authentication, thank you).

Gone are the days of typing the same username and password credentials for each and every network or cable TV app. The new Video Subscriber Account framework allows users to enter their cable or satellite subscription credentials once for immediate access to all streaming video channels that support single sign-on. That’s right, it now takes just one authentication to unlock all participating pay-TV apps.

This new single sign-on feature marks the shift toward TV Everywhere, which is when you authenticate with your cable subscription credentials to access cable content online or through streaming media players like Apple TV. This is a huge milestone in Apple’s attempt to move users away from “regular TV viewing” and towards viewing everything via Apple TV. By cutting the traditional TV cord, customers will spend more time with their devices, hence increasing the likelihood of them discovering new content (like yours!).


Image from TomsGuide

Apple Push Notification Service for direct communication with your customers

Though it’s been available on iOS, the Apple Push Notification Service (APNs) framework is will be added to tvOS 10. Content owners should be excited about APNs because it is a powerful and efficient way to communicate with customers. Whenever content owners have new content or an update to their service, they will be able to send notifications informing all their customers at once. Even if the app is not running, the device will still alert each user that there is something new waiting for them.

Notifications can be sent to your primary app (Apple TV) as well as services associated with that app (your other Apple devices ex. Apple watch). An extension can be used to identify the topics of your alert.

It’s easy for viewers to miss content they don’t know about. The ability to notify your customers will help keep them in the loop about your content and keep them engaged with your channel. Now you can worry less about keeping existing users and concentrate on growing your subscriber numbers!

HomeKit for access to and automation of Smart Home devices

Just to further ensure that Apple TV users won’t want to leave the couch, Apple has turned the Apple TV into a universal remote control for your house. HomeKit allows users to control home appliances and electronics without having to get up and divert attention away from the TV.


Image from Macworld

Want to dim the lights before a movie and make it chilly so you can bundle up in your blanket? Just tell Siri. Not only will the new tvOS 10 updates turn the Apple TV into an all-in-one controller, but it will also open up more opportunities for new apps (not to mention make our lives easier).

With these new perks over other platforms, Apple TV may convince new users to make the switch, which might encourage content owners to relocate in turn. But why decide between the devices? Zype partners with Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Roku, enabling our customers to publish their entire library anywhere from one dashboard!

Developers can begin previewing the new tvOS 10 updates this week, while consumers will have to wait for the update in the fall. Just in time for your viewers to “Apple TV and chill” to your new content as winter approaches.

Harness the power of Zype's video infrastructure