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Last week, the MLB app was removed from the third-generation Apple TV, with a tipster informing us that the app has been deprecated for the eight-year-old device. The MLB app now requires an Apple TV HD or Apple TV 4K.

mlb-banner.jpg

While the MLB has not provided a reason for the app being removed, the third-generation Apple TV was released in 2012, making it quite old. A few other popular apps are being removed from the third-generation Apple TV as of this month, including YouTube and CBS All Access, the latter of which is being rebranded as Paramount+.

AirPlay remains available for streaming content from an iPhone or iPad to the third-generation Apple TV, although one Twitter user said that AirPlay was not working for the MLB app, so your mileage may vary.

MLB will begin its 2021 season on April 1, with Spring Training underway now.

Article Link: MLB App No Longer Available on Third-Generation Apple TV
 
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Wowfunhappy

macrumors 65816
Mar 12, 2019
1,314
1,559
I don't watch MLB and I don't own an AppleTV—but this really bothers me on principle. The age of the device shouldn't matter in the slightest; all that matters is whether it's capable of streaming video, which it absolutely is. It has been doing it for years.

Now a bunch of older AppleTV's are going to needlessly end up in landfills.
 

icanhazmac

Contributor
Apr 11, 2018
1,325
4,218
Can someone with some dev knowledge explain this? If tvOS is still supported on the older boxes then it seems a simple streaming app shouldn't be such a performance hog that an older box can't handle it. If its not performance is it a code issue, like a no longer supported older dev environment?
 

nutmac

macrumors 603
Mar 30, 2004
5,493
5,590
Now would be a perfect time for new Apple TV.

Apple TV 4K is now 3.5 years old, and the prospect of replacing now-obsolete product with another aging product can be an uneasy decision.

Perhaps Apple has a big thing in store for Apple TV and thus require tvOS 15. But I certainly hope it is coming sooner than later.

Not being able to play YouTube in 4K with 50-60 frames per second or HDR is just embarrassing, as is choppy frame rate on many Apple Arcade games.
 

dannyyankou

macrumors G4
Mar 2, 2012
11,164
22,571
Westchester, NY
I hope they add a iOS 14 widget. I know they have the today widget, but I want it on my homescreen

Edit: Wait I just checked, they removed the today widget with the last update. This makes me optimistic that they’re getting ready to add a homescreen widget before the season starts.
 

Canyda

macrumors 6502a
Sep 7, 2020
700
847
Now would be a perfect time for new Apple TV.
Yeah, no kidding. I was literally moving my Apple TV 4K to our downstairs TV this week so my wife could watch TSN streaming on the ATV4K in order to watch curling on the main floor of our house because our old 3rd Gen ATV doesn't have TSN on it for obvious reasons of having no app store.
 

machpost

macrumors 6502
Jan 28, 2010
385
402
Washington, DC
This is really unfortunate but not unprecedented. The MLB app was dropped from TiVo devices in 2019. They also dropped support for the PS3 and a whole bunch of smart TVs recently.
 

BaltimoreMediaBlog

macrumors 65816
Jul 30, 2015
1,162
2,038
DC / Baltimore / Northeast
Still using my atv3 and waiting for next gen.
8 years old and still better than the standard fire tv stick.
This is why I won't purchase any of these streaming services. The copyright protection hurdles. I only keep Amazon Prime for the free shipping or otherwise, I'd cancel it. Can't play any Amazon Prime Video on my HDTV from my iPhone via an adapter, even Apple's adapter. Obviously it assumes I'm trying record or steal something. I'm tired of being treated as a crook instead of a consumer, so I refuse to buy your services as a result. Consumers simply like things that work, not a technical explanation of why they do not.
 
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jonblatho

macrumors 68020
Jan 20, 2014
2,222
5,533
Oklahoma
It doesn't really though. The app existed, it worked fine.
They may have a backend update planned which would break it, and the number of users on the third-generation Apple TV isn’t sufficient to warrant the engineering effort to keep it working, especially with tight financial constraints due to the pandemic. It’s also possible that Apple has unilaterally decided to no longer distribute updated apps for the third-generation Apple TV given the other apps leaving the platform soon.

Of course, the units should still work via AirPlay for those still using them, so it’s not like they’re totally useless.
 
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bsbeamer

macrumors 601
Sep 19, 2012
4,223
2,341
The same MLB Advanced Media run much of NHL and NBA streaming video, so expect those changes in the near future. MLB.TV works on a new $25 ROKU stick and they've abandoned older ROKU models in the past, just like with Apple TV 3rd Generation. This has more to do with the added functionality for compatibility with the additional audio streams/simulcast and in-app functionality.
 
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Deliro

macrumors 65816
Sep 20, 2011
1,114
1,282
I don't watch MLB and I don't own an AppleTV—but this really bothers me on principle. The age of the device shouldn't matter in the slightest; all that matters is whether it's capable of streaming video, which it absolutely is. It has been doing it for years.

Now a bunch of older AppleTV's are going to needlessly end up in landfills.

I have an ATV3, and it shows its age. It's painfully slow sometimes. Also, from a developer standpoint old versions of OS doesn't provide an optimal experience based on the SDK limitations.

Believe me, it behooves a content provider to have the largest install base as possible. Maintaining separate branches of code and adhering to a certain standard on the app across platforms becomes more difficult that it's worth eventually.

So, Apple not allowing the ATV3 to update to their latest OS is the biggest reason here, not the app developer. But again, running the latest AppleTVOS would likely be a compromised and crap experience on an ATV3.
 

Deliro

macrumors 65816
Sep 20, 2011
1,114
1,282
Does this also mean that older smart TVs have been dropped as well? :rolleyes:
Likely, if the Smart TV manufacturer discontinued updating that TV to their latest OS for whatever reason. Again as I said in my other reply developing several code branches becomes more work than it's worth. Developers also have to weigh the quality of the experience and how much it's compromised on an older version of a OS and hardware.

Apple provides updated SDKs to developers on OS updates, and certain functions of these SDKs are not supported by Apple on older operating systems as well as devices. For app devs to take advantage of these features they need to weigh the user experience vs install base. Devs maintain separate code branches to somewhat support legacy software and hardware, but how and when does that dramatically impact the UX?

It's not just a "hey let's ditch a % of our installed user base". I work in game development, and these are the questions we ask constantly.
 
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turbineseaplane

macrumors G4
Mar 19, 2008
10,842
19,363
Frustrating game of "better keep up to date if you want to watch" world we've entered.

Unfortunate they won't offer some type of stripped down experience for older devices, particularly as the core feature of "streaming a video" certainly still works fine.

(yes I'm aware of costs of supporting multiple platforms - please don't spend time typing a reply in that vein)
 

Suckfest 9001

Suspended
May 31, 2015
1,748
2,482
Canada
Can someone with some dev knowledge explain this? If tvOS is still supported on the older boxes then it seems a simple streaming app shouldn't be such a performance hog that an older box can't handle it. If its not performance is it a code issue, like a no longer supported older dev environment?
It’s possible that the MLB stream had to change video/audio format or something. Not sure what the process is for MLB app updates to happen, but I’m guessing Apple writes that software, and they’re probably not super interested in updating an 8 year old device.

It sucks that we truly can’t just buy stuff and have it last for decades like we used to but that’s what happens when you have a market built on corporate capitalism. It’s financially in their best interests to piss off a few thousand people because a bunch of them will upgrade to the newer Apple TV, even though technically absolutely nothing stops apple from updating the app.
 
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sjsharksfan12

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2020
734
669
San Jose, CA
Now would be a perfect time for new Apple TV.

Apple TV 4K is now 3.5 years old, and the prospect of replacing now-obsolete product with another aging product can be an uneasy decision.

Perhaps Apple has a big thing in store for Apple TV and thus require tvOS 15. But I certainly hope it is coming sooner than later.

Not being able to play YouTube in 4K with 50-60 frames per second or HDR is just embarrassing, as is choppy frame rate on many Apple Arcade games.

I bought the Apple TV 4K last year when I bought the new TV and it's nice. I just wish they would simplify the OS though. It just kinda feels boring, and I think I have enough apps on it already.

In terms of the MLB App, I am still waiting for sports to be filmed in 4K on a regular basis. I bought the TV getting really excited to watch Hockey in 4K and was disappointed that no game is done that way. I'm worried the Pandemic might have also delayed the technology even more.
 
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Spock

macrumors 68030
Jan 6, 2002
2,825
4,887
Vulcan
They are about to become almost as useless as the 1st generation, at least it still has Airplay.
 
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