Skip to main content

Apple releases first tvOS 9.1 beta for new Apple TV


Just a few days after the retail launch of the fourth-generation Apple TV set-top-box, Apple has seeded the first beta of the device’s first software update to developers. The new version, labeled tvOS 9.1, is available for download via the developer center, much like iOS and OS X betas have been seeded. The release notes for tvOS 9.1 indicate improvements coming to WiFi network compatibility, in-app-purchases for App Store apps, and improved scrolling. This update needs to be downloaded to a computer and then installed to the set-top-box via a USB Type-C cable. Apple today also seeded the second betas of iOS 9.2 and OS X 10.11.2 to developers.

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Mac — experts who break news about Apple and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Mac on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel


  1. Dharin Nanavati - 7 years ago

    tvOS 9.1
    watchOS 2.0
    iOS 9.2
    OSX 10.11

    Who is coming up with how to number things over there?

    • Jonny - 7 years ago

      tvOS is meant to align with iOS (which is on iOS 9). This is the first update and therefore is 9.1
      watchOS is on the second major version, 2, I do not thing there have been any major updates to it yet so it is 2.0
      iOS is on version 9, this is the second major update, so 9.2
      OS X is on the 11th version so 10.11.

      Pretty sure it makes sense.

      • Sebastian - 7 years ago

        No, why doesn’t tvOS and watchOS align then? Just stupid, also hopes that they rebrand OS X to macOS soon.

      • standardpull - 7 years ago

        Again, it isn’t stupid at all. iOS and tvOS can be easily compared. They cannot be easily compared to Mac OSX or WatchOS.

        Because tvOS is very close to iOS in feature set and cpu architecture.

        watchOS and MacOS X are quite different in terms of services and architecture.

  2. pretsky - 7 years ago

    downloaded to a computer and then installed to the set-top box via a USB Type-C cable?! WTF?! Worst update ever.

    • Joost - 7 years ago

      It’s a beta. The final version will of course be released OTA.

      • pretsky - 7 years ago

        Got it. That sounds better.

      • calisurfboy - 7 years ago

        Thank you for that info. I was also thinking “Worse Update Ever” since my father has an Apple TV but no computer.

    • Are you referring to tvOS 9.1 being lousy or the update process being lousy?

    • lkrupp215 - 7 years ago

      It’s for developers, not the general public. There is no public beta testing program for tvOS.

  3. lkrupp215 - 7 years ago

    Reading comprehension is not some people’s strong suit it would appear.

  4. Grayson Mixon - 7 years ago

    I think they just need to call it iOS. It doesn’t have to be identical to iOS on iPhone or iPad. The versions of iOS on iPhone and iPad aren’t even identical to each other.

    They said it’s heavily based on iOS, and the first version of tvOS is called 9.0 to align with iOS. They just need to brand it as Apple TV running iOS 9.

    • Great point!

    • loupetron (@loupetron) - 7 years ago

      There’s a problem with just calling it iOS – The primary frameworks are different; the UIKit and Cocoa Touch layers don’t exist in the same way in tvOS as it does on iOS. Under your logic, Mac and iOS shouldn’t be separate either; They share some frameworks, however the UIs are different.

      The reason for the different OS naming conventions is the UI layer and device specific frameworks. The versions of iOS on iPhone and iPad are the same; though there are device speciifc releases of the same version. UIKit is the same. CocoaTouch is the same.

      • If that’s the case then it would’ve been prudent to call it tVOS 1.0. Right now, as much potential as this product has, it seems like a 1.0 product.

      • Grayson Mixon - 7 years ago

        Exactamundo. tvOS 1.0 and iOS 9 both work. tvOS 9 seems odd.

    • Smigit - 7 years ago

      “I think they just need to call it iOS.”

      Why? What problem does it solve?

      If the extent of the issue is some people are wondering why they started at version 9 instead of version 1, then I think there’s really no problem that needs addressing. If Microsoft can go from Windows 8 to Windows 10 then I don’t think people are going to be too far put offside if tvOS starts at version 9.

      I think calling it iOS would be a far worse decision. That implies certain compatibility with Apps and the like that isn’t there, particularly in the consumers eyes. The fact tvOS started at version 9 is far less confusing than marketing it as iOS when it’s not compatible from a UI or application perspective with other iOS devices and software.

      • Grayson Mixon - 7 years ago

        iPhone and iPad both run iOS. They have app compatibility in the iPhone -> iPad direction, but not in the iPad -> iPhone direction. To say that iPad apps should work on Apple TV because they both run iOS is also to say that iPad apps should run on iPhone because they both run iOS. Both are incorrect.

  5. Please add support for Bluetooth keyboard and iOS remote app!!! I want to have complete game on ATV4 32GB – it`s such a poor experience to wait for Asphalt 8 to load… Improve the AppStore. Those are my current headaches with ATV4…

  6. taoprophet420 - 7 years ago

    Wonder if this will have a public beta?
    Curious what changes they made that are not listed.

    Would not be surprised if we end up with: