tvOS 9.2 is here: Dictation, folders, Live Photos, wireless keyboards, iCloud Photo Library & more

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 21, 2016

tvOS 9.2, a new update for the operating system which powers the fourth-generation Apple TV, is now available for public consumption. The new firmware, released alongside iOS 9.3, OS X El Capitan 10.11.4 and watchOS 2.2, is a very interesting update for the cool new features it brings to the table.

tvOS 9.2 enables several features missing from the initial tvOS release, including long-awaited support for wireless keyboards, dictation, Siri support for App Store searches, app folders on the Home screen, a revamped app switcher, Siri Remote improvements, support for Live Photos and iCloud Photo Library and more. Read More

 

Tips for using your Apple TV Siri Remote like a pro

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 8, 2016

The Siri Remote is capable of so much more than help you move around the Apple TV’s Home screen.

Its physical buttons, built-in sensors, mic and Bluetooth networking, along with programmable features accessible through the Settings app, let you control media playback with precision, converse with Siri, restart your set-top box, adjust your TV volume, launch and force-quit apps and much more.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn not only the basics of using the Siri Remote to navigate apps and settings on your Apple TV, but also the secrets to unlocking its full potential and use it in not-so-obvious ways. Read More

 

How to update Siri Remote firmware

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 1, 2016

Apple has built a hidden feature into the tvOS operating system which allows them, or the user, to update the firmware software of the Siri Remote separately of the Apple TV’s firmware.

Though a tvOS update may include a new firmware for the Siri Remote to fix bugs, improve reliability and add new features, occasionally performing a manual check for new remote firmwares still makes sense.

For instance, if you’re an Apple TV developer or a regular user who wants to troubleshoot their device. Or, maybe you’re just curious to try out the latest beta of tvOS and play with new features for the Siri Remote before they’re available to everyone.

In this post, you will learn how to see if there is an updated firmware available for your Siri Remote and, if one is available, how to install it. Read More

 

Apple’s all-new Remote app for Apple TV 4 will do Siri, gestures and work in games

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 15, 2016

Apple is working on a brand new Remote app for the fourth-generation Apple TV that will be a full replacement for the functions provided by the included Siri Remote, said Eddy Cue, Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services, who was joined on The Talk Show podcast with Daring Fireball’s John Gruber by Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering.

The upcoming software will be a new app, not an update to the existing Remote application for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad which in December 2015 gained keyboard and basic navigation support for the new Apple TV. Read More

 

How to control your Apple TV and iTunes content with Remote app

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 9, 2015

As of yesterday, Apple’s Remote app supports the latest, fourth-generation Apple TV. Better yet, Apple has confirmed that an all-new remote software is in the works—the full replacement for the Siri Remote’s functionality. But until it arrives, owners of the new Apple TV will have to make do with the good ol’ Remote app.

In this tutorial, we’ll explain how to make Remote work with your Apple TV like a charm. We’ll detail controlling the set-top box—and desktop iTunes— with Remote, explain how to peck with the iPhone’s virtual keyboard instead of Apple TV’s ridiculous two-line keyboard and teach you a few other tricks worth knowing. Read More

 

Apple: much-improved Remote app with full Siri Remote functionality in the works

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 9, 2015

Apple’s fours-generation Apple TV is getting a proper remote app described as a viable replacement for the bundled Siri Remote, John Paczkowski, Managing Editor with BuzzFeed News, wrote this morning.

In an interview with Eddy Cue, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services, Paczkowski learned that a much-improved remote app for the Apple TV 4 is currently in the works. Read More

 

At last, Remote app now works with Apple TV 4

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 8, 2015

Apple today released tvOS 9.1 for the fourth-generation Apple TV, the second software update for the set-top box since its October 2015 debut, and the question that has been on the Internet’s collective mind since is, does it now support Apple’s own Remote app?

While I haven’t had a chance to install and test tvOS 9.1 yet, web reports claim that tvOS 9.1 indeed includes compatibility with the Remote app, as well as Siri search support for Apple Music, a feature that was present in tvOS betas.

But it gets even better: if you own an Apple Watch, you can use its built-in Remote app to navigate the entirety of the tvOS interface right from your wrist. Read More

 

How to bring back old password-entry grid on fourth-generation Apple TV

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 23, 2015

To me, the new software keyboard in tvOS is absolutely the biggest pain point and a major step back from the old password-entry grid on previous Apple TV models.

As ridiculous as it sounds, Apple has opted to put all the characters in a single line, two-row layout. This isn’t just odd from a user experience standpoint, the new keyboard design in tvOS is a lot slower and clunkier to maneuver than the previous grid-style one.

And with the amount of passwords needing entering in third-party video apps, it’s especially annoying and cumbersome. But as it turns out, there’s a way to bring back the old password-entry grid to speed up typing those passwords. Read More

 

This flexible mounting system attaches Apple TV and Siri Remote to the back of your telly

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 23, 2015

A United States company called Innovelis today announced that its brand new flexible mounting system for the fourth-generation Apple TV set-top box and Siri Remote is available for purchase exclusively via Apple’s retail and online stores around the world.

Retailing for just $29.95, this useful accessory is especially convenient for Apple TV fans with a wall-mounted TV.

Dubbed the TotalMount Pro, it attaches your Apple TV directly to the back of a television set, helping eliminate both the clutter and the need to tunnel the HDMI cable through the wall from your TV area. Read More

 

How to program a universal infrared remote to control your Apple TV

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 4, 2015

Your universal infrared remote which used to control your old Apple TV should work just fine with the fourth-generation Apple TV right out of the box. In some cases, however, your legacy remote might need configuring in order to learn the signals that the Siri Remote generates.

In this post, we’re going to show you how you can program a universal infrared remote that came with your TV, cable box or DVD/Blu-ray player in order to navigate the entirety of tvOS, or use it with a prior Apple TV model. Read More

 

How to control your TV or receiver volume using the Apple TV remote

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 3, 2015

In addition to using your Siri Remote to navigate the tvOS user interface and play games on the fourth-generation Apple TV, you can program it to control power and adjust volume levels of your television set or home theater receiver.

That’s because your Apple TV and the Siri Remote that came with it are compatible with HDMI-CEC and outfitted with a built-in infrared receiver and blaster.

This means owners of the new Apple TV can adjust the volume of their TVs and home theater receivers via the HDMI cable or line of sight, using just their Siri Remote.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to program your Siri Remote and configure it to work with your home entertainment equipment. Read More

 

How to check battery level of Siri Remote and game controllers on Apple TV

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 2, 2015

The primary input method for the fourth-generation Apple TV is the included Siri Remote though compatible ‘Made for iOS’ (MFi) Bluetooth controllers can be optionally used to navigate across tvOS.

Input method notwithstanding, you’ll want to occasionally check out the battery level of the connected remote or gamepad, especially if it stops working.

As tvOS lacks an iOS-style status bar, seeing the battery level of the Siri Remote and other Bluetooth devices requires paying a quick visit to Settings.

In this tutorial, you’re going to learn how to check out the battery level of your Siri Remote or a Bluetooth gamepad paired with an Apple TV. Read More

 

How to force-quit apps on Apple TV

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2015

Although Apple’s fourth-generation Apple TV was designed to just work, there are always going to be instances when a misbehaving app will need to be purged from the memory. And with the device’s ability to download third-party apps and games, more things can now go wrong than ever before.

Just like your iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Mac, your Apple TV also lets you easily close a running app in order to free up system resources. In this tutorial, we’re going to show you how you can force-quit any app on the Apple TV 4 using your Siri Remote. Read More

 

How to adjust Siri Remote’s Touch surface sensitivity

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2015

The new Apple TV ships with Apple’s dramatically enhanced Siri Remote with a dedicated trackpad-like area, officially referred to as the Touch surface. In addition to making a clicking sound when pressed to highlight an item, you can swipe left, right, up or down on the Touch surface to navigate the interface, and much more.

Should you find that default touch sensitivity isn’t working for you, worry not for tvOS lets you customize the sensitivity of the Siri Remote to match your particular control style.

In this tutorial, we’ll detail personalizing the Siri Remote to your liking by adjusting the sensitivity of its Touch surface. Read More

 

How to restart or put your Apple TV into sleep or standby mode

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 31, 2015

By now, you have learned how to use the new Apple TV’s task switcher, rearrange and delete apps on the set-top box, take screenshots, disable password prompts for free and paid downloads and more.

Our coverage of the device continues with this tutorial which will teach you how to restart your Apple TV or put it into sleep or standby mode using either its remote or by selecting an option in the Settings menu. Read More

 

Review: CiderTV doubles as gesture-rich Apple TV remote and volume control for your television

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 1, 2015

I was researching software remotes for the Apple TV the other day and stumbled upon CiderTV by Aivee Apps. But wait, doesn’t Apple’s own Remote app for the iPhone and iPad get the job done?

Er, not quite. It’s buggy, slow and just a pain in the you-know-what. I want a solution that goes beyond Remote’s basic functionality, with features like richer gestures and DLNA volume control for compatible TV sets.

That way, I wouldn’t have to constantly juggle between the tiny Apple TV remote and another one for my TV. CiderTV does just that—and then some more—and is available at no charge. Read More

 

Somewhat unbelievably, the wrist strap for Siri Remote is an accessory sold separately

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 11, 2015

At long last, the new Apple TV will allow users to download apps from a dedicated App Store and—yes—games! But the Apple TV’s sleek new Siri Remote has the Wiimote problem: it can smash your TV.

So what do you do if you’re afraid of accidentally flinging the Siri Remote into your big screen TV when playing games like Beat Sports, which requires you to swing the remote? Get Apple’s Remote Loop which, somewhat unbelievably, isn’t bundled with the new set-top box—it’s an accessory sold separately. Read More

 

Siri Remote for the new Apple TV will be available in just eight countries

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 9, 2015

One of the best features of the new Apple TV, in my personal opinion, is its redesigned remote with Bluetooth 4.0 and built-in dual microphones for Siri functionality. Too bad not all buyers will be allowed to enjoy the new Siri Remote, as Apple is calling it.

According to the company’s official documentation for developers, the new Siri Remote is available in just eight key markets like the United States, United Kingdom and Germany, to name a few. Apple TVs in all other countries will be packaged with the standard remote. Read More

 

Report: Apple TV lacks 4K video streaming, 8/16GB prototypes tested and more

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 2, 2015

The allegedly upcoming Apple TV refresh will file as the most detailed overhaul of the device’s hardware, but it doesn’t seem that the new box will support 4K streaming, as per 9to5Mac’s sources.

The publication reported today that even though the fourth-generation Apple TV will be powered by Apple’s sped-up A8 processor (likely overclocked, as there will be no battery bottlenecks), it purportedly won’t support video streaming and AirPlay in 4K.

This is something of a surprise considering that the A8 processor inside the iPhone 6 was found capable of rendering 4K 3,840-by-2,160 pixel footage without a hiccup. Read More

 

Apple working on TV remote with built-in fingerprint sensor

By Cody Lee on Jul 23, 2015

The US Patent and Trademark Office on Thursday published three patent applications from Apple relating to biometric input devices. As noted by AppleInsider, all the filings mention a device with a built-in fingerprint sensor that could be used in a future TV remote.

It’s not hard to imagine the biometric possibilities of a remote control for a TV or set-top box. The device would be able to identify users—paving the way for custom profiles, settings and parental controls—and could support multi-finger shortcuts and simple gestures. Read More

 
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