Apple TV+ is Coming to Google TV

Posted on December 16, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Apple TV+, Music + Videos with 8 Comments

It’s going to happen: Google announced today that the Apple TV+ app is coming to Chromecast with Android TV in early 2021.

“We’ll be bringing more of your favorite entertainment into one place with the launch of the Apple TV app on the all-new Chromecast with Google TV,” Google’s Jonathan Zepp writes. “With the addition of the Apple TV app, Chromecast with Google TV users can access Apple TV+ (you’ll need a paid subscription). This makes the Chromecast with Google TV one of the only streaming devices with all the major video subscriptions.”

That’s an interesting claim: I suspect Roku has them all as well. But Apple has been pushing its entertainment app to a surprising number of endpoints, so this move makes sense. The Apple TV app is currently available on Amazon Fire TV, Roku, PlayStation, Xbox, and various LG, Samsung, Sony, and Vizio smart TVs.

Anyway, I’m sure the Apple TV app on Google TV will be just as constrained as it is only all non-Apple devices: You can rent and buy movies, buy TV shows, stream Apple TV+ content, and watch your purchased content. What’s missing? Access to the iTunes Extras special features that are only accessible on Apple’s devices.

Still, good news. Google says that it will roll out the Apple TV app on Chromecast with Google TV “early next year,” and it will bring the app to more Android TV-based devices in the future.

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Comments (9)

9 responses to “Apple TV+ is Coming to Google TV”

  1. yoshi

    Roku still doesn't have HBO Max, but Chromecast with Google TV does. That's probably where they get that claim but I doubt they'll be able to use it for long.

  2. Alex Taylor

    I don't actually understand what Apple has to gain by trickling support out one device at a time like this.

    Being able to use their service on just a few specific TV's, on this Google TV device, but not an Nvidia shield TV, and not on an android phone through chromecast.

    It can't be a technical difficulty, so why limit potential subscribers? They may be able to convince me to try their service (with say the new Jon Stewart show), but I'm unlikely to buy a new device to do so - and if I did it wouldn't likely be one that Apple directly profits from the purchase of.

    If they made it broadly available (which many tiny services like independent arthouse cinemas here in New Zealand are capable of doing), what's the downside?

    • pdhemsley

      In reply to agt4:

      I'm sure there is a level of technical and legal work to be done for each service. Maybe they're launching them when they're ready? Given the time of the year, with lots of people about to unwrap TV streaming devices, it would make sense to trickle them out rather than hold back for whichever service/device is the last in the roadmap.

      • Alex Taylor

        In reply to pdhemsley:

        Yeah, I get that it's a non-zero amount of work.

        But if the 100 seat local cinema can manage it, then Apple with a turnover probably exceeding our national economy could probably make it work.

        I understood that you build these things to an API level, which meant you don't need a different version for every device any more than you would need a different Windows app for every different laptop currently on sale.

  3. rmlounsbury

    This is good news since the ability to access my purchased video content from iTunes was the only thing keeping me tethered to the Apple TV hardware. This frees that content so I can access it from somewhere other than Apple TV alone.

  4. jgraebner

    This was probably the biggest gap for Apple TV+ on televisions at this point and Apple TV+ was probably the biggest name service missing for Google.

    I wonder if Apple will finally take the next step and get rid of their most obvious gap, which is the lack of an Android phone application.

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