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Winners and losers: Apple launches key Windows apps as Samsung ditches Google Assistant across TVs

It’s Sunday again, meaning it’s time for us to recap our winner and loser in the world of technology.

This week marked one of the biggest launches in Apple history, as the Apple Vision Pro made its way into stores in the US. Here at Trusted Reviews, our initial opinions on the Vision Pro have been mixed to say the least. However, it seems far too early to deem Apple’s first AR/VR headset our winner or loser. 

In other news, Shark announced its new cordless FlexBreeze Fan, while Xiaomi and Honor have teased major mobile launches on the horizon. However, our winner and loser titles this week go to Apple and Samsung, respectively. 

Scroll down to learn more. 

Apple Music Windows

Winners: Apple 

Our winner this week is Apple after three long-awaited Apple apps and services finally made their way to the Microsoft Store

Microsoft principal lead architect, Rudy Huyn, announced the launch of Apple TV, Apple Music and Apple Devices for Windows PCs on Wednesday. 

The Apple TV app allows users to access all of their Apple movie and TV purchases on their PC, as well as stream content from Apple TV+ with a subscription. The same goes for Apple Music for those who subscribe to the popular music streaming service. 

Apple Devices, meanwhile, makes it possible to manage all of your iOS devices from your Windows PC with a wired connection. This means you can back up and restore your iPhone without signing up for iCloud storage. 

Up until now, Windows users have been forced to rely on the iTunes app to handle all of the above functions on their PC. These new additions to the Microsoft Store should make managing an iPhone on a Windows laptop a bit more streamlined with a cleaner, more modern interface. 

They could also go a long way to ensure iPhone and iPad users don’t feel the need to invest in a Mac computer to complete the ecosystem. Apple TV, Apple Music and Apple Devices are available to download from the Microsoft Store now. 

Apple TV+

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Samsung Frame 4K TV new bezel

Losers: Samsung 

Our loser this week is Samsung, as the company announced plans to remove Google Assistant from its smart TVs

This includes all 2022 smart TV models, 2021 smart TV models, 2020 8K and 4K QLED TVs, 2020 Crystal UHD TVs and 2020 Lifestyle TVs, including the Frame, Serif, Terrace and Sero. 

The news comes via an update to Samsung’s support page, in which Samsung blames recent changes to Google’s policy. It was only last month that Google announced it would be removing more than a dozen Google Assistant features it claims have been underutilised by users. 

“Due to a change in Google’s policy, Google Assistant will no longer be available on Samsung TVs beginning March 1st, 2024. Check out other options for voice assistants on Samsung TVs,” wrote Samsung in the update. 

It isn’t clear which change is responsible for Samsung’s decision to drop support for Google Assistant, but the good news is that users can continue to send voice commands through Amazon Alexa and Samsung’s own Bixby voice assistant. 

The biggest loss here is for people who already rely on Google Assistant to control the rest of their devices, as this will no doubt complicate their smart home setup. 

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