Apple TV has continued to increase in popularity over the last few years. Even though it has been increasing in use in the United States, it still trails other streaming boxes like Roku by a significant distance.
For the time being, anyways. There are new things being added to Apple TV which may prove to be the difference in them becoming a household staple, or getting left on shelves for cheaper streaming options out there.
Whilst it’s easy to see that Apple TV is doing well in the US, it’s not that common for folks in the UK to have one of these boxes. Most people are still using Sky, Virgin Media or some other form of consuming digital TV media.
So, is Apple TV worth it if you’re living in the UK? Or are there other services which will prove to be a better choice overall? That’s what we’re going to be taking a look at today.
Is Apple TV worth it in the UK?
The overall verdict is that the Apple TV+ subscription isn’t worth it… yet, though it might be in a few years. The lack of shows is concerning, with no collaboration with other platforms. The Apple TV 4k top box is pretty neat, though.
That’s just a brief overview about Apple TV. As a relatively new streaming service, there’s a good amount of competition out there, like Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, Hulu and many more. You’ll also want to find out what our verdict on the the best 40 inch TV to watch it on is, too.
But back to the TV streaming service at hand. Most people get confused about what exactly Apple TV is, so let’s start by explaining that.
Apple TV vs Apple TV+ – Explained
The first thing that I need to mention are the difference between the types of Apple TV you can get. If you’re brand new to it, then it can be a little bit confusing about what these terms actually mean.
Apple TV Plus
The main thing people are referring to when they mention Apple TV is probably going to be the streaming service – this is referred to as Apple TV+, or Apple TV Plus.
You can watch this on any of your Apple devices – you don’t necessarily need an Apple TV Box to watch it. That means that you can watch it on your Macbook, iPad or your tablet too.
In terms of pricing, the Apple TV app or subscription service is £4.99 per month for people in the UK. However, Apple are offering a full year for free to anyone purchasing a new Apple device. You can also take advantage of the free 7-day trial to find out if it’s worth it for you.
And if we’re being honest, the range of shows that Apple TV Plus has at the moment doesn’t compare to pretty much any other streaming service out there. This is still early days for their streaming platform, but there is light at the end of the horizon.
2021 will see TV+ invest a lot of money into their different TV shows and films. One example is the highly anticipated Killers of the Flower Moon, directed by Scorcese and starring De Niro and Di Caprio – that can’t have been cheap.
But for now, the shows and films that are on Apple TV Plus aren’t amazing, and it’ll only really work as a supplement to others like Netflix and Amazon Prime, which have a much deeper back catalogue.
It is worth downloading the Apple TV app if you haven’t already, just to check it out. They do offer a seven day free trial of the app, so it’s probably checking out what shows and movies you can find on the platform.
Good Shows on Apple TV Plus
Although the amount of content on Apple TV Plus is very limited, the quality of their shows is actually pretty good. There’s a few different ones that you might want to check out, which includes;
- The Elephant Queen – Documentary
- Dads – Documentary
- Ghostwriter – Series
- Mythic Quest – Series
- Little America -Series
- Morning Show – Series
These are just a few of the shows that you can watch on Apple TV Plus, though there isn’t much more than this in total (23 at the time of writing).
Apple TV 4k, HD
Now, as well as Apple TV+, there’s also Apple TV 4k and Apple TV HD as well. These are both different forms of digital box to watch Apple TV+ and other apps on, including all of your favourite apps that you’ll want to watch in the UK.
It’s more closely compared to other alternatives like Amazon’s Firestick, a Roku stick and the Now TV set top box. You can’t get your Freeview channels on an Apple TV box, so it can’t completely replace all of your other TV boxes.
For folks thinking about getting an Apple TV box, they’re not cheap. The 4k model starts at £179, with the HD model being £149. Honestly, you might as well go for the 4k out of these two, as in a few years time, most people will being buying 4k TVs as standard.
If you have the Apple TV box, then you’ll still need to buy a subscription to Apple’s TV+ service. However, they do give you a free year subscription if you decide to opt for the 4K box.
Something else that’s worth noting is that when people are referring to buying an Apple TV, they’re just talking about the Apple TV box. There’s not an actual television or monitor for sale in the UK, which is a common misconception I’ve seen online.
What apps are on Apple TV 4K/HD?
There are tons of different apps that you can choose to download if you’re going to go with an Apple TV. This includes many that you’re already going to be familiar with.
For UK based folks, you can download all of your standard catch up services like BBC iPlayer and ITV Hub on your device very easily and watch them through your Apple TV.
As well as these UK apps, you can also access most of your other favourites and subscriptions services as well. This includes established ones like Amazon Prime, as well as newer apps like Disney+ as well.
Can you get Netflix on Apple TV?
Many people think that you can only watch a certain few apps with your Apple TV. This isn’t the truth at all, and there’s a bunch of apps that you can download and watch through Apple TV. This includes all of your favourites, including Netflix too.
Other Apps worth considering
Whilst these are the main apps that you can get, there are many other apps that are compatible with Apple TV as well (that probably won’t be compatible with a regular smart TV. This includes apps like;
Main Reasons to Get Apple TV
There are some reasons why Apple TV might be the right option for you to add into your household. It really depends on your current setup, and what you’re actually looking for when it comes to home entertainment.
In conclusion, in my opinion it’s only really worth getting Apple TV if you’re using all Apple products throughout your life. It’s great with your iPhone, iPad and whatever else Apple products that you’re using. But if you have an Android phone or you use Spotify, then you’re not going to be able to take full advantage of Apple TV.
With Virgin and Sky having a good grasp on the TV market in the UK for the most part, it’s unlikely that Apple TV will be anywhere near as popular as it is in the US in the near future.
However with companies like Apple, Amazon and Google growing even bigger, there’s no telling where Apple TV will be in a few years. And with the company offering a free trial, there’s no reason not to try their streaming service out.