Apple TV to get a huge free video upgrade for home cinema fans, plus a swathe of new features

Apple tvOS 18 is coming with some great new capabilities

Apple TV 4K
(Image credit: Apple)
Quick Summary

Apple has announced new features that are coming to the Apple TV 4K streaming box.

These include a new 21:9 mode for watching movies in their native aspect ratio through a home cinema projector.

Although there's no sign at a new set-top-box, Apple has announced a swathe of new features coming to its existing Apple TV 4K streaming devices.

Added as part of a tvOS 18 update, new TV tools include InSight, Apple's own version of Amazon's X-Ray feature found on Fire TV Sticks and televisions.

While watching shows or films, you just swipe down on the remote and you'll get to see real-time information on the actors in that scene, along with other details on the content.

Apple is also improving its  enhanced dialogue mode, using machine learning to bring up the volume and clarity of speech without impacting the rest of the audio. This even works when streaming content to the box via an iPhone or iPad, and when you're listening either through a TV, audio system or over Bluetooth using AirPods.

Apple tvOS 18 - Enhanced Dialogue

(Image credit: Apple)

There will be more "convenient subtitles" too, which will pop up naturally when you mute the volume or skip back in a programme.

Perhaps more exciting for home cinema fans is that the Apple TV 4K box will soon also support the 21:9 aspect ratio, for those with projectors capable of playing the cinematic format natively. This will be especially useful for watching Apple's own movies on Apple TV+, such as Napoleon and Killers of the Flower Moon.

Finally, Apple announced that users will be able to customise the rolling screen savers in a much bigger way. That includes the ability to make your own screen savers from portraits in your iCloud photo library, or from favourite Apple TV+ shows  – such as Snoopy.

The Apple TV 4K box is available in two models – one has 64GB of built-in storage and works over Wi-Fi only, the other doubles the storage and can also be wired by Ethernet cabling.

Pricing starts at £149 / $149 and its available from numerous retailers now.

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.