Give Apple TV the Finger With Updated iPhone Remote App

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Apple (s AAPL) released updates for the Apple TV and iPhone Remote app yesterday that replaces traditional controls with finger gesture controls, letting you run everything on the set-top box from your iPhone or iPod touch. The Apple Blog has the full story, but here are a few of the additions:

Video Playback

  • Flick or drag and hold to move the on-screen selection. Tap to select.
  • Tap to Play or Pause.
  • Flick left or right, or drag and hold to rewind or fast-forward.
  • Flick down to show chapter markers, then flick left or right to skip.
  • Drag two fingers left for replay.

The Apple Blog wonders whether these updates may be signs of new life for the Apple TV, which has been a bit of a red-headed stepchild in Cupertino, where it is repeatedly called a “hobby.”

Taking advantage of the iPhone’s touch capabilities as a remote is part of an overall television industry trend towards gesture controls instead of traditional buttons.

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