Almost two years after it hit Android, the Google TV app is finally coming to iOS for iPhone and iPad users.

The revamped Google TV app replaces the Google Play Movies & TV app on iOS, just like it did on Android. The new experience will be delivered via an update in the App Store which starts rolling out today.

What’s new in the Google TV app?

So, what’s new? Like in the existing Play Movies & TV app, the Google TV app on iOS allows you to view your purchased movies and TV shows from Google or the ones that are synced over from iTunes, Amazon, and other digital sellers via the Movies Anywhere service. But, like many other digital content apps on iOS, you can’t purchase movies and TV shows directly through the Google TV app. You have to do so either through the web or an Android device.

But now there’s a whole lot more that the app can do. For one, there’s the ability to create a central watchlist that consists of content from a variety of streaming services. Just search for the movie or show you want, add it to the watchlist, and you’ll be able to find it, regardless of where it moves.

google tv app ios iphone

There’s now also support for controlling any Android TV OS device with the Google TV app for iOS. Whether it’s a Chromecast with Google TV, TCL Google TV, or any other Android TV OS device running Android 8.0 or higher, you’ll be able to control it using this app. Previously, this functionality was handled by a dedicated “Android TV Remote” app, but that was discontinued last year, and the digital remote was then moved to the Google Home app. On Android, the Google TV app has the in-app remote for TVs as does Google Home.

Google TV is rolling out on iOS starting today via the App Store.

The death of Play Movies looms near

This change also signals that the Google Play Movies & TV brand is nearing its inevitable end.

Google TV, the smart TV platform, natively integrates content from what was Play Movies, and the company has been phasing out the brand across other platforms as well. Roku lost its Play Movies & TV app last June, as did smart TVs from Samsung, Vizio, and LG. Those platforms were instead pushed to stream purchased movies through the YouTube app, which syncs all movie and TV show purchases.

With the iOS app going away and Google having removed purchases from the Play Store on Android, the company is effectively cleaning up the last remnants of Play Movies & TV. One of the last places where the branding remains at this point is on the legacy Android TV experience, where it would be a bit confusing to implement “Google TV” branding as an app.

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Ben Schoon

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