Apple's new set top box is here—and so are third-party controllers, wrist straps, and more.
Picking up a new Apple TV? If you plan on doing any sort of gaming, chances are you'll want to pick up an additional accessory or two. And no, that doesn't mean buying a bunch of Siri remotes: You can only pair one remote per Apple TV, so if you want multiplayer action, you're going to need a Made for iPhone (MFi)-compatible controller.
Here are all the accessories I'd consider picking up, whether you plan to use your TV for apps and movies, gaming, or a bit of everything.
1. For TV Safety: Remote Loop
Yes, this $12.99 accessory is truly an accessory: Unlike the Wii, Apple doesn't expect the vast majority of its users to fling Siri remotes into their TV while enjoying an Apple TV game or two.
That said, if you want the comfort and safety a wrist strap provides, you'll want to pick this up. It's pretty simple: a soft plastic strap that plugs into the remote's Lightning port on one end, and provides an adjustable loop for your wrist on the other.
This probably goes without saying, but the strap is only compatible with the fourth-generation Apple TV remote—aluminum remotes of yore need not apply.
2. For the Gamers: SteelSeries Nimbus Wireless Gaming Controller
The Siri remote is a huge step forward in interaction with the Apple TV, but experienced gamers may find it a bit, well... lacking. You can, of course, use your iOS device as a gaming tablet if the game in question supports it, but if you prefer an old-school controller, SteelSeries has a solution for you: The Nimbus Wireless Gaming Controller.
The $49.95 device uses Bluetooth 4.1 to connect to your Apple TV, and recharges via Lightning Connector, just like the Siri remote; it even offers 40 hours of playtime with a quick charge.
The controller itself offers pressure-sensitive action buttons, left and right analog triggers, left and right control toggles, and a standard D-pad. Lights in the top center indicate multiplayer connectivity, and the center Menu button lets you control your Apple TV outside of gaming, as well.
The controller works out of the box for Apple TV, but like all MFi accessories, it also works to control games on any iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, as well.
3. For charging: Twelve South HiRise
You won't need to buy any batteries for your Siri remote—it's all Lightning port charging in this fourth-generation Apple TV future. But if you don't relish the idea of running your remote to your computer for a quick charge, you may want to consider some sort of docking option.
There are plenty of docks that look great with the new Apple TV remote, including Apple's own Lightning Dock but we're partial to Twelve South's black HiRise: The black-anodized metal stand looks extra slick when paired with the remote, and it hides the pesky white charging cable, to boot.
4. For rocking out: Guitar Hero Live
Plastic instruments are (almost) back: This $99.95 guitar doesn't have an official release date quite yet, but you'll soon be able to use it on your Apple TV, iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to rock out with Guitar Hero Live, Activision's newest entry into the Guitar Hero franchise.
Like previous plastic guitars, the Guitar Hero Live entry will still require a pair of AA batteries—no lithium-ion Lightning charging here. It does, however, connect to devices via Bluetooth, so you're not limited to the Apple TV for your rockin' round the clock.
5. For couch-cushion haters: Apple TV Remote Stand
The new Siri remote is bigger than its predecessor, but it's still small enough to disappear into the couch cushions. Since Apple has yet to make "Find My Remote" a possibility, the folks at Studio Neat decided to make things just a little bit less complicated with their Apple TV Remote Stand.
This little milled walnut stand can sit just about anywhere, using a micro-suction pad to temporarily stick to most flat surfaces. This keeps both stand and remote from sliding when you reach for it.
6. Kanex ATV Pro HDMI to VGA Adapter with Audio Support
Plan to use your new Apple TV for presentations? If you're working somewhere without HDMI support, Kanex has you covered with a HDMI to VGA adapter.
The adapter requires no additional power, and translates the TV's HDMI signals to VGA and 3.5mm audio out. This gives you both audio and video control over your presentation—so feel free to play the latest Star Wars trailer in your next meeting. We won't judge.
7. For the clumsy or absentminded: Spare remotes
If you're worried that you might misplace your remote or accidentally break it, have no fear: Apple has you covered.
The simplest backup solution is the $19 IR-based Apple Remote: It works with the fourth-generation Apple TV, and while it doesn't support Siri or touch input, it's not a bad substitute until you can find or replace your Siri remote.
If replacement is the name of the game, Apple offers extra Siri remotes on its website for $79. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, these are only for replacing your primary Siri remote—you can't have multiple Siri remotes paired to your Apple TV.
8. Find more accessories on Apple.com
Have your eye on something else for your Apple TV? Check out Apple's full list of accessories on Apple.com. And if you're looking for a device neither we nor Apple have mentioned, mention it in the comments and we'll try to help you find it.