It seems that the most recent Apple TV software update has rendered a lot of second and third-generation Apple TVs virtually unusable, with the set-top box device’s Home screen displaying only the Computers, Music and Settings apps with no other channel options available.
According to a thread on Reddit, an Apple representative has confirmed that a fix for the bug will be included in a future software update for the Apple TV. Users can manually check if any new firmware update is available at any time through the Settings app.
Fourth-generation Apple TVs exhibit no issues.
According to various reports, the second and third-generation Apple TVs would kick people out of Netflix, HBO and other video apps randomly, after which all apps go missing except for Music, Computers and Settings. People have tried restarting their boxes, unplugging and plugging them again and even resetting routers, to no avail.
“I was watching my Apple TV just fine at around 10am yesterday,” one poster wrote. “When I came back later, the Apple TV displayed nothing but Settings and Computers”. The person says Apple’s support people are receiving “a ton of calls” about the issue.
Another affected user wrote on MacRumors forums:
All of a sudden last night the interface on my AppleTV blinked for a second and then all my menu options were gone except for Settings and Computers. I reset it, unplugged the cables, changed from wifi to ethernet and back, etc. The network test runs fine.
The MacRumors poster added that doing a full restore only fixed the issue temporarily. As soon as the person turned on iTunes Match, everything disappeared again.
Here’s one more account from another disgruntled user:
All I see is a computer and settings option. In the settings option I have access to everything except the main menu setting. There’s absolutely nothing in there as an option. I’ve restarted my Apple TV as well as my AirPort Extreme.
I’ve reset the Apple TV and I inserted all the info back in like my iCloud account etc. it obviously is logging onto the Internet since I was able to connect my iCloud account. One other strange thing is that my iTunes won’t recognize the Apple TV when I plug it in directly to my Mac mini via a USB cable. It just doesn’t show up.
Other people claim that even though Netflix appears to crash the device, the Apple TV usually recovers on its own. The third-generation Apple TV and older normally displays Computers and Settings if there’s no Internet connection.
Some folks have partially fixed the bug by changing DNS settings but this apparently doesn’t work for all users and the problem seems to be fairly widespread.
As we told you recently, the third-generation Apple TV was removed from sale via Apple.com. The Cupertino company told its employees and education partners that it had phased out the device to double down on the fourth-generation Apple TV with Siri Remote, an App Store with downloadable apps and games, A8X chip and more.
Image via MacRumors forum member Gabbison.