Android TVs get the Apple TV app with Apple TV+

Mike Wheatley

Android TV devices can now download the Apple TV app, and with that they can access the Apple TV+ streaming service as well as movies and shows purchased through iTunes.


The familiar will know that Android TV is already one of the most comprehensive TV platforms around in terms of content and streaming services, with the likes of Netflix, Disney+ and HBO among its selection of built-in apps. But Apple TV has notably not been available on the platform up until now.

The announcement actually came from Nvidia, which said in a blog post this week that its Android-based Shield TV boxes now support both the Apple TV app and Apple TV+. Philips later issued a press release saying that all of its Android TVs, including its latest OLED models, have gotten the Apple TV app too, giving users access to Apple TV+ and various other Apple TV channels that come with it. It said that the app will come pre-installd on all new TVs, while those with older models can download it from Google Play.

“I’m delighted that we are now able to add Apple TV+ — one of the very best TV streaming services — to our Android platform," said Martijn Smelt, CMO Europe at TP Vision, which operates the Philips TV brand in Europe.

9to5Google reported later that Google had confirmed the Apple TV app is now available for the entire Android TV ecosystem, which would mean TVs sold by brands such as Sony and TCL too, as well as streaming devices like the Chromecast.

Apple TV+ may not be such an essential requirement as a service like Netflix, as its catalogue of content is much more limited. But it does have some decent original shows, including Ted Lasso, For All Mankind and Mythic Quest. The Apple TV app also provides a way to access channels such as Paramout Plus, Starz and AMC Plus which are difficult to find elsewhere. And of course, there are literally thousands of titles to buy or rent on iTunes, which the app provides access to.

In its blog post, Nvidia said that Shield TV owners at least will be able to benefit from some software tweaks such as its AI upscaler that can boost HD content to 4K resolution. The Apple TV app on the Nvidia Shield and on Philips' TVs supports streaming in up to 4K Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, though the availability of these features on other TVs and platforms will likely vary. Google Assistant also works with Apple TV on the Shield, Nvidia said.

Google said the Apple TV app can be downloaded via the Google Play Store now. However, the app is not available on Android phones and it remains unclear if it ever will be.