Apple Releases tvOS 12; Bringing Dolby Atmos, Password Autofill and Zero Sign-On to the Fourth and Fifth Generation Apple TV

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

Apple has today released tvOS 12. In this post we highlight some of the new changes and features that this update will bring to the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV.

. It is perhaps unsurprising that the platform which received the least attention during Apple's WWDC keynote earlier this year, is also the one which sees the fewest new features and significant changes in the pending round of OS releases.

For AppleInsider, the biggest new feature in tvOS 12 is support for Dolby Atmos which “will make the Apple TV the only set top box to support both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos”. As it did previously with 4K content, Apple will be upgrading eligible content to support Dolby Atmos for free.

One of AppleInsider's favorite new features in tvOS is password autofill:

Whenever a user goes to sign into an app, the QuickType keyboard will automatically appear on their iPhone or iPad. But thanks to tvOS 12 and iOS 12, it will now include access to saved passwords. This makes it measurably easier to sign-in to apps and services on the device. What's more, there is now support for guests. When going to sign-in, if an unknown iOS device is within a foot or so from the Siri remote, it will automatically get presented with a pairing code prompt before they are able to then use their own stored passwords to sign-in. It works delightfully well.

An improved user experience is also promised by the single sign-on successor that's new in tvOS 12, zero sign-on, which uses your location and local network to automatically authenticate you against your cable service and sign you into all of the apps you receive as part of your subscription.

For a more complete list of what’s new in tvOS 12, MacRumors offers a good overview.

And What About Accessibility?

We will not be able to test tvOS 12 ahead of its public release, so have not yet been able to explore its new features or check for any changes which will affect blind or low vision users. We will update this post with anything that we learn. To help with this, please add a comment below to let us know of any changes, improvements or regressions that you find during your own use of tvOS 12.

How to Update to tvOS 12

To install tvOS 12 on a fourth or fifth generation Apple TV, go to the Settings channel, then look for the System section near the bottom. From here, look for Software Updates under Maintenance, then select Update Software and Download and Install.

More information on how to update the software on your Apple TV is available on this Apple Support page.

As always, we look forward to hearing your thoughts on this update.

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