A little over a month after revealing that its new Apple TV will enable additional search, voice-control and other capabilities through its Siri personal digital assistant, Apple has revealed plans to expand Siri's capabilities to music searches on Apple TV sometime next year.
Apple confirmed the soon-to-launch new abilities for Siri to BuzzFeed yesterday. This latest announcement underscores how quickly Apple has been moving into new categories of search and entertainment. Apple Music made its debut just four months ago, and programming searches enabled by Siri's smarts on the fourth-generation Apple TV, which is now shipping, were announced last month.
New Apple TV Comes with Siri Remote
Siri became considerably smarter and more "proactive" with the release of Apple's latest operating system update -- iOS 9 -- on September 16. In addition to getting a new look, Siri also received an upgrade that included the ability to provide time-based and location-based contextual reminders, handle simple math calculations and deliver a wider range of more relevant search results.
Last month, Apple also announced that its new version of Apple TV, which uses the tvOS operating system, would be available in the U.S. late this month. It's unclear from reports if Apple has yet released an official version of tvOS. The updated Apple TV comes with a Siri Remote for voice-controlled searches of TV shows and movies. Starting early next year, those capabilities will be expanded to include searches for songs and albums.
"Extending Apple TV's universal search to Apple Music turns the streaming box into a voice-controlled music player," BuzzFeed reported. "It's a savvy consolidation of the living room entertainment system, positioning the new Apple TV as a sort of one-stop shop for video, gaming, and music."
Cook: 'Strongest Product Lineup Yet'
Apple did not respond to our request for more information about Siri's growing programming search capabilities.
The new Apple TV features the company's own A8 chip and will enable developers to build more games and custom content apps. Pre-orders for the new, fourth-generation Apple TV -- priced at $149 for a 32 GB model and $199 for 64 GB -- began shipping this week, with deliveries expected on Friday. Friday is also when the devices will be available in Apple's retail outlets.
In its fourth-quarter financial results, released Tuesday, Apple reported record revenues for 2015, with Q4 sales of $51.5 billion. Sales in its "other products" category, which includes the Apple TV, Apple Watch, Beats products and iPod, exceeded $3 billion for the quarter, up from $2.6 billion in Q3 2015.
"Fiscal 2015 was Apple's most successful year ever, with revenue growing 28 percent to nearly $234 billion," CEO Tim Cook said during the earnings call. "We are heading into the holidays with our strongest product lineup yet, including iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, Apple Watch with an expanded lineup of cases and bands, the new iPad Pro and the all-new Apple TV which begins shipping this week."