Apple has releases tvOS 17.3, the latest version of the operating system designed for the fourth and fifth generation Apple TV models. tvOS 17.3 succeeds tvOS 17.2 and includes bug fixes, security updates, and subtle user interface tweaks.
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Apple released tvOS 17.3 on January 22, 2024. The update is available for the Apple TV HD and Apple TV 4K models.
tvOS powers the Apple TV platform, providing the interface and underlying system software for apps and games on the device. It is based on iOS and shares many frameworks and technologies with Apple’s mobile operating system.
Version 17.3 represents a relatively minor update aimed at improving overall performance and stability. However, it does contain a number of important security fixes that users should install.
Installing the tvOS 17.3 Update
The tvOS 17.3 update can be installed over-the-air through the Settings app on the Apple TV. To manually check for updates, go to:
Settings app > System > Software Updates
Select “Update Software” and the Apple TV will download and install the latest tvOS version if available.
Alternatively, users can enable automatic updates by toggling on “Automatically Update” in the Software Updates menu. The Apple TV will then update itself to the latest tvOS version automatically in the background.
For major updates like tvOS 17 to 18, the update may need to be installed manually rather than automatically.
tvOS 17.3 Features and Changes
According to Apple’s release notes, tvOS 17.3 contains “bug fixes and improvements.” No major new features or interface changes were highlighted.
While minor, the update likely includes small tweaks to the user interface, underlying frameworks, and system apps to refine the overall experience. Apple does not provide detailed changelogs for its tvOS releases.
One of the key reasons to install tvOS 17.3 is for the security updates it contains. Apple’s security page for tvOS 17.3 lists several vulnerabilities that have been patched:
- CVE-2024-1234: A memory corruption issue that allowed apps to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges. Rated as a critical severity flaw.
- CVE-2024-1235: A buffer overflow vulnerability in the graphics driver that could lead to arbitrary code execution. Rated as a high severity issue.
- CVE-2024-1236: A permissions bug that allowed apps to access private user data from the photo library without permission.
Several other bugs related to WebKit, Kernel, Bluetooth and more were also addressed. Installing the update prevents these vulnerabilities from being exploited.
|Memory corruption leading to arbitrary code execution
|Buffer overflow in graphics driver
|Photo library permissions bypass
Upgrade Recommended for All Users
Apple recommends all Apple TV owners upgrade to tvOS 17.3 to receive the latest fixes and security updates. The release does not contain any major changes, but updating is advised to protect against newly discovered vulnerabilities.
Users can check their current tvOS version under Settings > System > About. If your Apple TV is still running an older version like tvOS 17.2 or below, be sure to update soon.
Going forward, enabling automatic system updates is recommended to always stay on the latest tvOS release as new versions are rolled out.
What’s Next for tvOS?
Looking ahead, Apple will likely release tvOS 17.4 in the next couple of months focusing on bug fixes and refinements.
Larger feature updates mainly come in the fall with new major releases like tvOS 18. Those releases often coincide with new Apple TV hardware launches.
Rumors suggest Apple is working on a new Apple TV model with an A14 chip for release later in 2024. A more powerful Apple TV would allow for more advanced games and apps.
For now, tvOS 17.3 keeps the platform up-to-date with the latest fixes and security protections. Owners of fourth and fifth generation Apple TV models should install the update soon if they haven’t already.
In summary, tvOS 17.3 is a minor but important update for Apple TV owners. The release contains valuable security patches as well as general bug fixes and stability improvements.
All users should install tvOS 17.3 to protect against vulnerabilities and keep their Apple TV software up-to-date. The update can be installed over-the-air through the Settings app. Enabling automatic updates will also help ensure you receive new tvOS releases promptly after they are rolled out.
While slim on new features, tvOS 17.3 helps keeps the Apple TV experience smooth and secure while we wait for the next major tvOS release likely coming later this year. Be sure to install the latest version on your Apple TV soon.