When the fourth-generation Apple TV was introduced this past September, Apple CEO Tim Cook declared the media player “the foundation of the future of TV.” Although Apple’s highly-anticipated subscription television service has been put on hold, Cook’s statements may still ring true.
The device’s App store is, simply put, booming. It’s been just over a month since the tvOS App Store officially launched, and there are already over 2,500 apps available to Apple TV users, and that number is growing rapidly.
tvOS app growth chart published early in the month of December, 2015
A report published yesterday by AppFigures states that there are currently 2,624 apps currently available on the tvOS App Store. By their estimates, the App Store may hit the 10,000 number in early 2016. Apps are being added at an average of almost 500 per week. Cook’s prediction that “the future of television is apps” may have been right on the money.
Gaming is, not surprisingly, the largest category available in the App Store, making up roughly 38% of the total, with 1,002 apps. Games are followed by entertainment, taking up 15% with 417 apps available, with entertainment and lifestyle apps taking distant third and fourth-place spots.
One interesting note, however, is that although gaming apps represent the largest category, entertainment apps tend to be the most downloaded – users are still using their Apple TV to, well, watch TV.
With the tvOS App Store gaining more and more traction, Apple is still slowly adding features to make the experience more user friendly. According to 9to5Mac, Apple is testing out a feature that would allow users viewing an app in the iOS App Store to see if the app has an Apple TV-compatible version.
At the moment, apps featuring compatibility with iOS and tvOS are marked with a “SF.UniversalAppleTV” identifier. The feature is still slowly rolling out, and the identifier will likely change to a simple “Apple TV” identifier when complete.
The fourth-generation Apple TV is currently available at the Apple Store for $149 for the 32GB model and $199 for the 64GB model. A fifth-generation Apple TV is rumored to be in the works, possibly available in early 2016.