New in OS X: Get MacRumors Push Notifications on your Mac

Resubscribe Now Close

New Apple TV: Tips, Tricks, Siri Remote Shortcuts and Useful Settings

The new Apple TV launched on Friday in several countries around the world, giving early adopters a chance to try out the fourth-generation device for a few days now. The consensus opinion is that the new Apple TV is a worthwhile upgrade, particularly because of new features such as the App Store, Siri, and tvOS user interface, with lots of potential to get even better in the months and years ahead.

Apple-TV-App-Switcher
Press the Home button twice to bring up the new Apple TV's app switcher

To complement our coverage of the new Apple TV, which includes a trio of hands-on videos, an Apple TV apps roundup, several tidbits, and a reviews roundup, we have created the following list of tips, tricks, and shortcuts for the new streaming device, some of which are outlined in the Apple TV user guide. The tips are centered upon useful Siri Remote shortcuts and Apple TV settings.

Siri Remote shortcuts


Siri-Remote-LabeledTouch Surface
- To rearrange an app, hover over it and hold down the touch surface until the icon starts to jiggle. Then, swipe left, right, up or down to move the app, and press the touch surface once to finish.
- The touch surface has accelerated swiping, meaning that a faster swipe results in faster on-screen scrolling.
- Hover over any letter on the keyboard and hold down the touch surface to bring up a contextual menu, which includes uppercase letters, accents and a backspace key.
- Hover over a song and hold down the touch surface to bring up a contextual menu, which includes various Apple Music options.

Menu Button
- Press the Menu button once to go back.
- Press the Menu button twice quickly from the Home screen to start the screensaver.
- Press and hold the Menu and Home buttons simultaneously to restart the Apple TV.

Home Button
- Press the Home button once to return to the Home screen from anywhere.
- Press the Home button twice quickly to bring up the App Switcher, which displays all apps open. Swipe up on the Siri Remote's touch surface to force close an app.
- Press the Home button three times quickly to access VoiceOver.
- Hold down the Home button to place the Apple TV in Sleep mode.

Siri Button
- Hold down the Siri button to use Siri.
- Press the Siri button once and wait to view a list of commands you can ask Siri.

Play/Pause Button
- Press the Play/Pause button once to change the keyboard between uppercase and lowercase.
- Press the Play/Pause button once to delete an app in wiggle mode, which requires hovering over an app and holding down the touch surface until the icon starts to jiggle.
- Hold down the Play/Pause button for 5-7 seconds to return to the Apple Music app.

apple-tv-4th-gen

Apple TV settings


General
- Apple TV can be renamed in Settings under AirPlay > Apple TV Name.
- Apple TV network strength is displayed in Settings under General > About.
- Universal remotes can learn the new Apple TV in Settings under Remotes and Devices > Learn Remote. Follow the on-screen instructions.

Siri Remote
- The sensitivity of the Siri Remote's touch surface can be adjusted in the Settings app under Remotes and Devices > Touch Surface Tracking.
- The triple-press Home button accessibility shortcut can be changed in the Settings app under General > Accessibility > Accessibility Shortcut.
- The Siri Remote's battery level is listed in Settings > Remotes and Devices > Bluetooth.
- The Siri Remote can power on/off or adjust the volume of your TV and speakers over HDMI-CEC or IR. In some cases, this pairing process is automatic after setup, or manually configurable in Settings > Remotes and Devices > Home Theater Control under the "Turn On Your TV with Your Remote" and "Volume Control" menus.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 10
Tag: Siri Remote
Buyer's Guide: Apple TV (Caution)


Top Rated Comments

(View all)

12 months ago

I suppose it's just better to BUY one and learn to use it for yourself, instead of reading a list of bullet points ;)

As I read this article, I asked myself how anyone could possibly complain about an article that nicely summarizes the buttons and the various ways to use them, most of which aren't intuitive, and is very helpful to me, and I have the atv 4.

Then I remembered some of the people who post here, and my fantasy evaporated. And sure enough, the first poster found a way to complain about the article. Part of me wants really express myself which will get me kicked off this board. So I'll just stop here. Very sad, but completely expected.
Rating: 24 Votes
12 months ago
Please make a tutorial of:

"How to type faster using the Siri remote with a horizontal line of alphabets"


:(
Rating: 16 Votes
12 months ago
Over all I'd say I'm underwhelmed. The lack of Siri search for local or Apple music and the fact that the Remote app hasn't been updated to work with the ATV 4 at launch are baffling.
Rating: 10 Votes
12 months ago
This is great! Learnt some really cool time saving features from this article!! Makes me love my new Apple TV that little bit more :) All it needs now is the Plex app and I’m all set
Rating: 9 Votes
12 months ago
I picked mine up on Friday at launch, and I really like it. It certainly has a more complex layout that the earlier versions.

My main gripe is that I can constantly picking up the remote upside down. It's too symmetrical and the flat/gloss differentiation doesn't really tell the functionality apart.
Rating: 8 Votes
12 months ago
Thank you author, for putting this together. Really helps! I love my new Apple TV
Rating: 8 Votes
12 months ago

I suppose it's just better to BUY one and learn to use it for yourself, instead of reading a list of bullet points ;)

Not so much. Got mine on Friday and learned a couple things from this list.
Rating: 7 Votes
12 months ago

That's the home button?! I thought it was AirPlay. What's wrong with using a home icon?

Is it just me, or is the usability of the ATV really bad? So many hidden buttons/menus.


And yet everyone in my home learned how to handle all 4 buttons in about five minutes (and no, I'm not counting the volume as a legitimate button anyone under the age of 80 needs an explanation to use). Also, that is NOT and AirPlay icon, it's a television. It's not that hard. Just return yours, since this one's too much to handle.
Rating: 6 Votes
12 months ago

Apple TV settings

General
- Apple TV can be renamed in Settings under General > Name.


This is inaccurate.

To rename it, you must go to Settings->AirPlay
Rating: 6 Votes
12 months ago
What they don't tell you about Siri is that you cannot search your home movies with it. Even if you label them all "movies," Siri will not find and play a movie you've added unless it's already on the screen. So if you have a huge collection of DVD's, you must scroll through them all in order to play any of them... or re-purchase your movies from Apple. I think I'll be returning mine and buying a Roku, thank you very much.
Rating: 6 Votes

[ Read All Comments ]