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VLC’s app on the new Apple TV will let you play all sorts of video formats

Screen Shot 2015-09-14 at 9.07.09 PM

Hot on the heels of Plex announcing its plans to build an app for the new Apple TV, the developers behind the popular media playback software VLC have announced that they too are planning to support the new Apple TV. While details on the app are sparse at this point, the VLC team announced in a blog post that they have started work on VLCKit for tvOS.

“Some code to build VLCKit for the new tvOS was merged,” the blog post reads. “It’s very early though, but we have video playback.” It’s unclear at this point how VLC will be implemented on the new Apple TV. On iOS, VLC allows for playback of a variety of different file formats. Files can be synced between services like Dropbox, iCloud Drive, iTunes, GDrive, and others. Should VLC on the Apple TV be able to play the same wide variety of file types as its Mac and iOS counterparts can, then it will undoubtedly be one of the most popular apps on the platform.

Last week, it was revealed that popular media streaming app Plex will also be supported on the new Apple TV. The current Apple TV does not support Plex in any official fashion, but rather only if you jailbreak the device. Both VLC and Plex have been cagey when it comes to specific release timeframes and at this point, it seems unlikley that either will be available when the new Apple TV launches in late October.


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  1. discobatman - 8 years ago

    I already hook up my Macbook Pro to my non-Apple TV via HDMI cable and watch movies via VLC that way. Though still, this is cool. But they ought to also do an app for Chromecast. I’m curious to see if you’ll still be able to play Video TS files via VLC, unlike Plex.

    • leifashley - 8 years ago

      Chromecast doesn’t actually have ‘apps’. It’s an app on your phone that broadcasts to chromecast. It’s not nearly as cool as I thought it was.

  2. For me personally, VLC is the killer app that makes Apple TV 4 a must have!

  3. An official KODI app and I’d be interested…

  4. Graham J - 8 years ago

    You don’t need to jailbreak an AppleTV to view Plex media on it, just use PlexConnect on another machine and install a certificate on the device.

  5. Who cares? VLC has a lot of bugs in it that are constantly being mitigated by GPLv3 issues between purests and non-purests, fighting about FFMpeg, etc.

  6. alfon_sico (@alfon_sico) - 8 years ago

    Waiting for Infuse on AppleTV 4. Now running in a Jailbroken ATV 2 and its great

  7. realgadgetblogger - 8 years ago

    VLC on iPad worked great at one time but then because of licensing concerns they no longer support DTS or Dolby Digital. A lot of movies that used to play have no sound now.

  8. But would Apple allow VLC / Plex apps on the Apple TV App Store? Wouldn’t they be a threat to their iTunes store? If they were allowed, there’s no reason Kodi don’t do a legit app too…that would be cool…

  9. Henrik Sundqvist - 7 years ago

    I know it says “any format” but does it play unarchived .rar files?


Avatar for Chance Miller Chance Miller

Chance is an editor for the entire 9to5 network and covers the latest Apple news for 9to5Mac.

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