Apple didn't announce a new Apple TV 4K during the iPhone 15 event – but it didn't need to

4K TV streamer: Apple TV 4K
(Image credit: What Hi-Fi?)

Ok, so we knew the chances of a new Apple TV 4K being announced during Apple's 2023 iPhone event were slim, but I'm disappointed every time an Apple event comes and goes and there's no new Apple TV device, simply because I flipping love the Apple TV 4K.

But that sort of touches on the issue, doesn't it? I love the Apple TV 4K not simply because it's a great product (that also fits squarely into my AV wheelhouse), but because it's vastly superior to all of its rivals.

In fact, it barely has any real rivals: it's in a different league to the likes of an Amazon Fire TV Stick and Chromecast with Google TV, and even the Amazon Fire TV Cube, which is in theory an Apple TV 4K challenger, falls well short of the mark. In fact, let's face it, there's a strong argument that the original Apple TV 4K is still better than every non-Apple video streamer.

So, not only is it not a huge surprise that Apple didn't announce a new Apple TV 4K during an event primarily dedicated to the iPhone 15, but until the current Apple TV 4K has a serious challenger, why would Apple announce a new model?

Actually, there is one, rather nerdy reason that it might: AV1. This is a next-generation video codec that can deliver higher-quality streamed video and sound quality through more advanced compression, and Apple has just announced that the iPhone 15 Pro has hardware decoding of AV1 built in. That's surely reason enough for Apple to produce a new Apple TV 4K? I'd like some new innovations, too, of course (a smaller, neater design would be nice), but I'll take what I can get.


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Tom Parsons

Tom Parsons has been writing about TV, AV and hi-fi products (not to mention plenty of other 'gadgets' and even cars) for over 15 years. He began his career as What Hi-Fi?'s Staff Writer and is now the TV and AV Editor. In between, he worked as Reviews Editor and then Deputy Editor at Stuff, and over the years has had his work featured in publications such as T3, The Telegraph and Louder. He's also appeared on BBC News, BBC World Service, BBC Radio 4 and Sky Swipe. In his spare time Tom is a runner and gamer.