Can’t find the new Apple TV+ shows, like ‘Dickinson?’ This shortcut can help.

  • Post category:Apple TV+

The Apple TV app is so bad, someone had to create a shortcut just to make it easier to navigate to the new Apple TV+ content. Apple may have invested billions in its Apple TV+ streaming service and hosted star-studded events to tout its new shows, but what it apparently didn’t do is give much thought to designing its TV app to help direct users to its exclusive content.

Instead, the Apple TV+ shows were mixed in with everything else at launch — forcing users to scroll past What to Watch recommendations and more from the larger iTunes catalog just to find the Apple TV+ section.

And even if and when you found that Apple TV+ section, each individual show page is poorly organized, too. Instead of following the standard format where a season’s episodes are listed in vertical order on an iPhone, Apple’s TV app opts for a horizontal scroll instead. It’s frustrating. It’s confusing. No one likes it.

Apple TV+ may only include a handful of shows at launch, but it still deserves its own, dedicated tab — like Apple’s very own Netflix within the larger construct of the TV app. Part of the problem, as detailed by 9to5Mac here, is that Apple’s TV app has been designed to be a jack-of-all-trades. It connects you to your iTunes library of rentals and purchases, to your add-on premium subscriptions, to your TV Everywhere-authenticated apps, and to some — but not all — of your favorite streaming services.

But the end result is an app that’s sort of a mess and one that failed to carve out a dedicated space for Apple TV+.

This problem also annoyed MacStories Editor-in-Chief Federico Viticci, who wanted an easier way to navigate directly to the Apple TV+ catalog content.

His solution? An iOS shortcut.

Viticci figured out a way to create URLs that will open any Apple TV+ section you want to get to in the TV app. Similar to how Apple Music web links can be edited to direct to content right in the Apple Music app, Apple TV+ web links can also be tweaked to launch the TV app — without redirecting you through Safari first. This is done by replacing the “https” part of the content URL with “,” he explains.

With this discovery, Viticci was then able to create a shortcut that lets you go directly to any Apple TV+ page — including the “front page” for Apple TV+ or the individual show pages for shows like The Morning Show, For All Mankind, See, and Dickinson.

Apple TV+’s catalog is a bit larger than that, of course, and will continue to grow. But you can continue to edit the shortcut to meet your needs.

To add something new to the default list of shows, you’ll first have to locate the show in the TV+ app — good luck! You’ll then tap the “Share” button then choose “Copy” to copy the link to your clipboard. In the shortcut, you’ll add a new “Text” item to the action that’s at the beginning of the shortcut, and name it what you like. Finally, you’ll paste in the link you had copied into the “Value” field.

Ta-da! You updated the shortcut!

Or if you just want to use the iOS shortcut as is, so you can get right to Dickinson, you can add it by clicking here.

Viticci tells TechCrunch he expects to keep adding sections as well as links for more shows, as these become available. The shortcut, which is called simply “Apple TV+ Launcher,” will be updated in the MacStories Archive so people can re-download the latest version as needed, he says.

Of course, when people are building a shortcut to work around an app’s poor navigation, there’s a bigger problem that needs to be addressed.

Now, it’s possible that Apple intentionally mixed in Apple TV+ content in such a way to not make it look like it was using its platform power to give its own service a boost, in light of the recent antitrust and anticompetitive investigations into its business practices. But Apple usually doesn’t go so far as to offer a poor user experience — that’s just not in its ethos.

Besides, Apple certainly wasn’t shy about marketing the streaming service in other ways — as with the push notifications or the big Apple TV+ banner at the top of the Apple TV homescreen, for example.

Instead, this just looks like a case of needing to tweak the app’s design.

Until then, we can just use the shortcut to help.

(Image credits: MacStories)



Continue Reading Can’t find the new Apple TV+ shows, like ‘Dickinson?’ This shortcut can help.

How To Open the Apple TV+ Front Page and Individual Shows Directly in the TV App

  • Post category:Apple TV+

Update, November 7: The shortcut has been updated with links to all currently announced Apple TV+ shows. You can find the updated download link below and in the MacStories Shortcuts Archive.

I was listening to the latest episode of Upgrade, and, among several fair points about the shortcomings of Apple’s TV app for iPhone and iPad, Jason Snell mentioned an issue that stood out to me: if you don’t know where to look, it can be hard to tell where exactly the Apple TV+ service lives inside the Apple TV app. This sentiment was echoed earlier today in this article by Benjamin Mayo at 9to5Mac:

Apple has made very few changes to the TV app design and feature set to accommodate the TV+ launch. TV+ is shoehorned in as just another source of content with very little consideration. With other streaming services, if you want to commit to their world and explore everything they have to offer, you can just open the dedicated app and never touch the TV app. With TV+, that’s simply not possible.

There is a channel section of the TV app that is dedicated to TV+ content — but it’s far from perfect. Finding the TV+ section requires a lot of scrolling, meandering past several screens worth of Watch Now recommendations for everything in the iTunes catalog.

I’ve been watching The Morning Show over the weekend (which I surprisingly liked a lot; I’m going to start For All Mankind and See next), and even though I’m used to the TV app’s quirks by now, I recognize that its navigation should be improved. And in particular regarding the new Apple TV+ service, I do believe that it’s somewhat buried in the TV app experience – by default, Apple doesn’t offer a single, easy way to open a “page” with Apple TV+’s complete catalog. So, I had to figure out a solution on my own.

Continue Reading How To Open the Apple TV+ Front Page and Individual Shows Directly in the TV App

Apple Releases Trailer for The Banker Arriving in Theaters December 6th and Streaming on Apple TV+ in January 2020

  • Post category:Apple TV+

Apple has released a trailer for its upcoming movie, The Banker, on its Apple TV YouTube channel. The company describes the film as follows:

Based on a true story, “The Banker” centers on revolutionary businessmen Bernard Garrett (Anthony Mackie) and Joe Morris (Samuel L. Jackson), who devise an audacious and risky plan to take on the racially oppressive establishment of the 1960s by helping other African Americans pursue the American dream. Along with Garrett’s wife Eunice (Nia Long), they train a working class white man, Matt Steiner (Nicholas Hoult), to pose as the rich and privileged face of their burgeoning real estate and banking empire – while Garrett and Morris pose as a janitor and a chauffeur. Their success ultimately draws the attention of the federal government, which threatens everything the four have built.

The film, which is rated PG-13, will be released in theaters December 6th and stream Apple TV+ in January 2020 following a similar pattern to The Elephant Queen and Hala which are also Apple Original movies. It’s an interesting approach and one that is likely designed to ensure the films are eligible for awards like the Oscars, while simultaneously creating marketing opportunities and viewer awareness in advance of their debut on TV+.

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Continue Reading Apple Releases Trailer for The Banker Arriving in Theaters December 6th and Streaming on Apple TV+ in January 2020

Apple TV+ Now Available: Here’s Its Full Launch Lineup

  • Post category:Apple TV+

Apple TV+ is now available, a video subscription service that Apple has been working on for over two years now. The new streaming service debuts in over 100 countries, and can be accessed now inside the TV app on iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV devices, and select smart TV manufacturers, as well as from

Apple TV+ costs $4.99 per month, but all users are offered a 7-day free trial; also, anyone who has purchased a new iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, or iPod touch since September 10 will receive a free year of service. Finally, even if you don’t subscribe at all, Apple has made the first two episodes of all of its series available for free viewing in the TV app.

While the cost of entry is low for Apple TV+, what you get for the price is also fairly limited at the moment. Apple has branded TV+ “the first all-original video subscription service,” which means there’s no back catalog of legacy content, only brand new shows and movies that have never been released before. This angle could be spun as a positive thing in some respects, because many streaming consumers these days care most about new content, but it also means you can quickly watch everything TV+ has to offer and be stuck waiting for more content.

Here’s the full lineup of everything Apple TV+ offers today:

Continue Reading Apple TV+ Now Available: Here’s Its Full Launch Lineup

Apple TV+: Awesome student discount, Sony gets TV app, more….

  • Post category:Apple TV+

TV+ premiere

As the November 1 launch date looms large, Apple continues its Apple TV+ marketing blitz with a string of show premieres, a fantastic student subscription deal and the appearance of the TV app on even more third party devices….

All the music and TV for students

Apple has combined both Apple Music and TV+ services in a compelling student deal.

Under this deal a student can subscribe to both services for the reduced price of just $4.99/month.

In other words, for a few dollars, students will be able to access all Apple’s new TV shows and all the world’s music using their Apple device, a Fire or Roku stick, and more.

See image

Apple wants to teach the world to see TV improve

Sony gets the Apple TV habit

Sony announced that it will support AirPlay 2 earlier this year. At that time, only Samsung had committed to also providing an Apple TV app on its TV sets, but this has changed.

Sony is adding the TV app to its smart televisions in the form of a firmware upgrade. Which models are going to get this largesse isn’t clear, but the following Sony sets all currently support AirPlay 2: Sony Z9G Series, Sony A9G Series, Sony X950G Series and the Sony X850G Series.

Watch Apple’s TV+ trailers here.

Amazon and Roku both added Apple’s TV app to their systems in recent weeks. It is already available on Samsung sets and is expected to reach TV’s from LG and Vixio soon.

Apple hasn’t yet announced plans to introduce an Android app for TV+.

Roku Apple TV

Roku gets TV+

What you get?

The TV app doesn’t just let you watch TV+ shows – it also lets you purchase TV and movies from iTunes and access content provided by others using the Apple TV Channels service.

The service will be available on the Apple TV app on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod touch, Mac and other platforms, including online at, for $4.99 per month with a seven-day free trial.

If you purchase any iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod touch or Mac you can get one year of Apple TV+ for free.

One more thing

Apple has engaged in a string of show premiere across the U.S. in recent weeks.

  • October 26: Premiered the Morning Show.
  • October 21: Premiered See.
  • October 17: Premiere for Dickinson.
  • October 15: For All Mankind show premier.

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Apple TV+ Review Roundup: Apple’s Originals Met with Mixed Reception

  • Post category:Apple TV+

Apple’s streaming video service, Apple TV+, launches this Friday, November 1st. Ahead of its launch, today the first reviews dropped for the service’s tentpole originals: The Morning Show, See, For All Mankind, and Dickinson. Overall the critical takes are extremely mixed: though I haven’t seen any reviews that are outright negative, and there are a few which are very positive, the majority of reviews seem to lie somewhere in-between those two extremes.

For All Mankind appears the best-received Apple series, with Dickinson perhaps the second most-praised; however, that may be due to the added pressure placed on The Morning Show and See as Apple’s top two draws. Though many reviewers found things to praise about each show, such as Jennifer Aniston’s strong performance in The Morning Show, and the incredible visuals of See, the majority of their critical emphasis was on the ways these series fail to live up to high expectations.

One common note struck by reviewers is that with most Apple TV+ shows, only three episodes per series were provided for review, which made it difficult to adequately evaluate each first season. Perhaps tellingly, For All Mankind had the most episodes screened for critics, and it’s the most-praised show.

Below is a roundup of excerpts from various reviews that help provide a good overview of what to expect from Apple’s first original series.

Continue Reading Apple TV+ Review Roundup: Apple’s Originals Met with Mixed Reception

Apple TV+ set for low-key Russian launch

  • Post category:Apple TV+

Apple TV+ will make its debut in Russia on November 1 without local language dubbing.

Quoting a source close to Apple, Kommersant reports that it will instead use local language subtitles.

It adds that as Russian audiences are accustomed to dubbing, local competitors believe the service, like Netflix, expect to secure a large number of subscribers in its initial stage.

It will also probably be regarded as very niche product.

In Russia, Apple TV+ will be available as an app for free for a year on new Apple devices, or otherwise R199 (€ 2.81) a month.

By comparison, two of Russia’s leading OTT services ivi and Okko charge R399 and from R99 to R599 a month respectively.


Continue Reading Apple TV+ set for low-key Russian launch

Disney and Apple are pushing us into the era of the $25 million TV episode

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the mandalorian disney

The age of the $15-million-per-episode TV series has already come and gone. We’re now entering the era of the $25 million show.

Some of the Marvel TV series on Disney’s forthcoming streaming service, Disney+, will cost as much as $25 million an episode to make, according to the Hollywood Reporter. That would be the most expensive scripted television ever made—by a lot. Here’s how that stacks up to the reported budgets for some other popular TV series throughout the years:

TV seriesNetworkYears on airEstimated cost per episode
Upcoming Marvel showsDisney+2020-$25 million
SeeApple TV+2019-$15-17 million
The Morning ShowApple TV+2019-$15 million
The MandalorianDisney+2019-$15 million
Game of ThronesHBO2011-2019$15 million
The CrownNetflix2016-$13 million
WestworldHBO2016-$10 million
FriendsNBC1994-2004$10 million
Jack RyanAmazon2018-$8 million
American GodsStarz2017-$8 million
Stranger ThingsNetflix2016-$8 million
American Crime StoryFX2016-$6 million
The SimpsonsFox1989-$5 million
House of CardsNetflix2013-2018$4.5 million
Orange is the New BlackNetflix2013-2019$4 million
LostABC2004-2010$4 million
The Walking DeadAMC2010-$3.5 million
Breaking BadAMC2008-2013$3 million
The West WingNBC1999-2006$3 million
Mad MenAMC2007-2015$2.5 million
Friday Night LightsNBC2006-2011$2 million
The SopranosHBO1999-2008$2 million
SeinfeldNBC1989-1998$2 million
Downton AbbeyPBS2010-2015$1.5 million

Until a few months ago, HBO’s Game of Thrones was the priciest scripted TV show ever, at about $15 million per episode toward the end of its eight-season run. Costs were already ballooning throughout the industry due to several factors, including the competition for top talent, the entrance of new deep-pocketed players like Netflix and Amazon, and the desire to make shows that with high production values that stand out amid the deluge of content. The shift to on-demand viewing also gives shows longer shelf lives, affording networks more time to collect returns on their big investments.

But that was before two of the richest companies in the world announced they were making their own original TV shows. When Apple launches its streaming service, Apple TV+, on Nov. 1, it will feature two shows with budgets in Game of Thrones territory: See, a far-future dystopian drama (rumored to cost up to $17 million an hour, Variety reported) and The Morning Show, a dramedy starring Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, and Steve Carell. The tech giant is paying those stars more than $1 million per episode, the Hollywood Reporter said.

Not to be one-upped, Disney’s budget for its Star Wars series The Mandalorian, launching with Disney+ on Nov. 12, is also a reported $15 million an episode. Three of the company’s planned Marvel offerings—The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (2020), WandaVision (2021), and Hawkeye (2021)—could cost nearly double that. While the budgets of these shows pale in comparison to those of Marvel’s theatrical releases (many are in the $200 million range), they still need to be high enough to simulate the production values of a blockbuster film and all the pricy special effects and exotic locales that come along with them.

Before Silicon Valley got into the TV business, the average American cable drama cost anywhere from $3-to-$6 million per episode. Broadcast network shows were even cheaper: NBC’s Friday Night Lights, for instance, was budgeted at about $2 million per episode. ABC’s Lost, considered one of the most expensive shows of its time, cost roughly $4 million per episode. (Though its pilot episode remains one of the priciest ever, at $14 million.)

Now that Apple and Disney are in the mix, these prices are only going to increase. Together with Netflix and Amazon, the streaming services and their seemingly limitless funds could crowd some of the smaller networks out of the market entirely. AT&T, which now owns HBO, is hoping to fight back by increasing the prestigious pay-cable channel’s budget and launching a streaming service of its own, HBO Max, which will include HBO shows as well as content from across all of WarnerMedia’s brands.

Amazon, meanwhile, is trying to stay relevant by producing a Lord of the Rings TV series, for which Jeff Bezos and company paid $250 million for the rights alone. In total, the show could run up a tab as high as $1 billion.


Continue Reading Disney and Apple are pushing us into the era of the $25 million TV episode

Eir and Virgin in dispute over Apple TV services

  • Post category:Apple TV+

Eir and Virgin Media could be heading for the courts over Eir’s new Apple TV-based TV service.

Last week, Eir announced it would offer customers a new Apple TV 4K set-top, preloaded with its own app and those of Ireland’s top free-to-air channels.

But on Tuesday, Virgin began proceedings in the High Court in Dublin, claiming its channels had been included without prior permission.

Eir says it wanted to base its future around on demand content.

However, there is disagreement over whether the inclusion of Virgin’s channels count under the same regulation as is used for distribution over satellite and cable networks.

In a statement, Virgin Media told Broadband TV News: “Eir’s insistence to include Virgin Media Television channels on their new Apple TV service, without prior approval, has left us with no other option but to issue legal proceedings to protect our rights and the rights of our content providers.”

BTN has approached Eir for comment.


Continue Reading Eir and Virgin in dispute over Apple TV services

Apple TV app comes to Amazon Fire TV

  • Post category:Apple TV+

You can watch Apple on Amazon

Want to watch Apple TV+ but don’t yet have an Apple TV streaming box?

Amazon’s got you covered and has made the Apple TV app available on its Fire TV products, meaning you can watch all your iTunes purchases using Amazon’s stick.

Repeating on all channels

The direction of travel is crystal clear:

Just as you can watch Amazon’s shows on your Apple TV/TV app, you can now watch Apple’s on Amazon.

You can also watch Apple TV apps media on Roku sticks, Samsung televisions and (soon) TVs from other manufacturers LG, Sony and Vizio.

Amazon has made Apple TV available on Fire TV devices across 60 countries.

This means that when Apple launches its Apple TV+ service on November 1 most people who are already watching streaming services will be able to at least sample some of the company’s new home-made TV shows.

Apple will be offering a huge quantity of original content for just $4.99/month, including several shows that may turn out to be highly successful, such as ‘See’. ‘The Morning Show’ or ‘For All Mankind’.

How it works

In a small touch of irony you will be able to use Alexa to control your Apple TV+ shows on your Fire stick, Amazon has said.

The Apple TV app is available today for Fire TV Stick (2nd Gen) and Fire TV Stick 4K, in the U.S., Canada, UK, Germany, France, Spain, India and Italy.

Fire TV Basic Edition customers in over 50 countries (including Australia, Austria, New Zealand, Brazil, Ireland, and Mexico ) will be able to start using the app today.

You can purchase Amazon Fire sticks using the following affiliate link.

c/o Variety.

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