Master your new Apple TV with these tricks!
Apple finally added 4K support to the Apple TV.
The new Apple TV 4K looks almost identical to the old one and comes with the same Siri Remote (albeit with a slight tactile difference around one of the physical buttons).
The Siri Remote, which includes a trackpad and voice controls in addition to physical buttons, is almost deceptively simple to use.
It’s so simple it’s easy to miss some of the more hidden tricks Apple has created in interacting with the new Apple TV.
Let’s look at some of the favourite ones we’ve discovered.
Apple TV 4K Tips
1) Manually Activate The Screen Saver
The new Apple TV has beautiful 4K screensavers that make your television look stunning even when it’s not doing anything. By default you can set these screensavers to activate after a set amount of time in Settings > General > Screen Saver > Start After. However, you can also manually activate the screensaver at any time by double-clicking the Menu button on the Siri Remote.
2) Map The Home Button To The Home Screen
The new Apple TV 4K annoyingly mapped the Home button (the button with the TV icon on it) to Apple’s new TV app. While the TV app is very useful, it was better when the Home button was mapped to the Home screen, so pressing it would take you back to the Home screen of the Apple TV where all the channel icons are. Thankfully, you can remap the Home button to, when pressed, taking you to the home screen again and not the TV app. To do this go to Settings > Remotes and Devices > Home Button.
3) Quickly Restart Your Apple TV
You can restart your Apple TV anytime you want by Going into the Settings app, but this is annoying because you need to navigate multiple menus. Or you can use this tip: simply hold down the Home and Menu buttons on the Siri Remote at the same time for six seconds. You Apple TV will then automatically restart.
4) Quickly Sleep Your Apple TV
You can also go into the Settings app to sleep your Apple TV, but again, this is a bit annoying. Instead, just hold the Home button on the Siri Remote for two seconds. You’ll see the Sleep screen appear on your television. Select the Sleep button and your Apple TV will go to bed. Simply tap any button on the remote to wake it.
5) Quickly Switch Between Lowercase And Uppercase Letters On The Keyboard
The Apple TV onscreen keyboard can be a bit annoying. Instead of being laid out in the typical QWERTY format, it’s a long linear line of letters that you scroll through from end to end. Below these letters are the lowercase or uppercase buttons, which change the keyboards caps. Instead of having to select these buttons, you can simply press the Play/Pause button on the Siri Remote when on the onscreen keyboard to switch between lowercase and uppercase letters.
6) Quickly Delete A Letter
Another annoying thing about the onscreen keyboard is the backspace key is all the way at the end of it, meaning you need to scroll a lot just to delete a letter. Or you can use this tip: when you want to delete the most recently typed letter click down on the touchpad of the Siri Remote and wait for the alternate characters popup to appear. There’s you’ll also find a delete key you can quickly select.
7) Activate Dark Mode
This is one of the best features of the new Apple TV. Apple has built in a dark mode feature to it, which gives your Apple TV a more cinematic—and less bright—experience. Simply go to Settings > General > Appearance and change it to “Dark”. Another Cool little trick is if you change this setting to “Automatic” your Apple TV will enable the light mode during the day and the dark mode at night.
8) Find Out What That Magical Elf Just Said
Have you ever been watching a fantasy movie with the creatures speaking in such heavily accented English that you can’t really understand what they are saying? I’m looking at you, Lord of the Rings. What’s cool is the Apple TV has a Siri feature that lets you see what someone just said.
To activate this, simply as your Siri Remote “what did s/he just say?” Doing so will cause the movie or show you are watching to skip back ten seconds for a reply—only this replay will have subtitles enabled for a short time allowing you to read what was just said.