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Apple updates Apple TV with iTunes Radio

The over-the-air update includes Apple's new radio service as a feature. The update comes days after Apple rolled out iOS 7, the company's biggest overhaul to its mobile operating system.

Joan E. Solsman Former Senior Reporter
Joan E. Solsman was CNET's senior media reporter, covering the intersection of entertainment and technology. She's reported from locations spanning from Disneyland to Serbian refugee camps, and she previously wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. She bikes to get almost everywhere and has been doored only once.
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Joan E. Solsman
2 min read
Jason Cipriani/CNET

Apple released a software update for its Apple TV box Friday, adding iTunes Radio as well as features like playing content from iTunes in the cloud instead of your Airplay device.

The over-the-air update comes two days after the rollout of iOS 7, the computer maker's most comprehensive change to its mobile operating system since it was introduced six years ago. That added iTunes Radio to Apple devices like iPads and iPhones as well.

The new software for Apple TV also adds the iTunes Music Store to purchase music directly on the television and AirPlay from iCloud, which lets Apple TV play content from iTunes in the Cloud instead of your AirPlay device when possible, along with other updates.

Ahead of an event last week that unveiled the new iPhone 5C and 5S, reports first raised anticipation that Apple had a new set-top box on deck after long neglecting the device from any significant refresh. But later, the company's TV plans for the event were said to be limited to a simple software update that might, among other things, let one person's Apple-purchased content stream on another person's Apple TV.

But no news on Apple's TV ambitions came out of the unveiling.

The $99 streaming box itself has been low on the company's totem pole since Chief Executive Tim Cook took over as chief two years ago. Recently, Apple TV's incremental improvements have been limited to bulking up with desirable channels, adding Vevo, Disney, Hulu Plus, HBO Go, Watch ESPN, and Sky News.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Updated, 11:33 a.m. PT: with details of additions with software upgrade.