Apple Arcade on TV: Seven months later, still not much progress


It’s been over a year since Apple Arcade was first announced and more than eight months since the subscription video game service was released. One of its big pitches is the ability to play its library of games not only on your iPhone, iPad or MacBook, but also on your couch at home with the Apple TV. I last looked at Arcade for Apple TV in October, paying special attention to how it plays on the big screen. Now, with quarantine leaving everyone hungry for new home entertainment, I decided to give it another spin to see how the platform has grown.

I played a host of Arcade titles over the last few weeks on an Apple TV 4K and a 65-inch 4K TV, primarily using the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 controllers as well as the Apple TV remote. In short, Apple’s $5-per-month service has gotten a little better and is now at over 100 titles, but it still has a very long way to go to offer a real alternative to Xbox, PlayStation or Nintendo Switch.

I let my Arcade subscription lapse a couple of months ago. While there are plenty of games, very few are of interest to our family. I think the comparison to consoles may be a little unfair but I’m not a console player so I don’t/can’t compare the experiences. On their own merits, the Apple Arcade games just aren’t compelling enough for us.