apple tv video scrubber - time remaining howto

Did you know that your Apple TV can estimate what time you will finish viewing the current movie or TV show, barring any interruptions? The video scrubber that pops up along with other controls doesn’t just let you see the time remaining until the current show ends, but can optionally estimate what time you will finish viewing the video without having to pause.

Lightly tap (without clicking) on the smooth glass area of your Siri Remote once.

Doing so will bring up the standard scrubber that you’re familiar with, with the progress bar indicating how far along you currently are, plus the total length in hours and minutes.

Apple TV Scrubber - estimated time remaining

Tap your Siri Remote’s glass surface to see the time remaining…

To get an estimate of when you’ll complete the viewing of the current video, tap the touch surface of your Siri Remote a second time. You’ll notice that the labels on the scrubber have changed to show the current time of day along with an estimated time of completion.

Apple TV Scrubber - estimated time remaining

…then tap again to get an estimate for when viewing will complete if uninterrupted

Your Apple TV must be connected to the Internet and have Location Services enabled if the option to update the time through servers has been enabled in Settings → General → Set Automatically underneath the Date and Time heading.

I’m loving this tip a lot!

With older Apple TV models you just press the Down button on the aluminum remote to open your audio settings and then cancel to see the time remaining for whatever show you’re watching once the panel has closed.

That was great because you could see the time remaining without interrupting your session. I’m glad that owners of newer Apple TV models the run the tvOS software can also get an estimate for an exact time they will finish viewing the current video without pausing.

Pausing is annoying and ruins the flow of whatever you happen to be watching.

Note that if you’re using a Harmony remote, you can show the controls at any time by pressing the Up button or hide them by pressing the Down button.

Keep in mind that this tip works on the fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV in all video apps that display standard playback controls by taking advantage of Apple’s APIs built in the tvOS software. But, if an app uses a proprietary video delivery method and a custom video scrubber, like YouTube for tvOS does for example, the tip won’t work.

Estimated time remaining in the Apple TV Remote app

Tap Details to show the time remaining in the Apple TV Remote app on iPhone

Neither the official iTunes Remote app nor the Apple TV Remote app shows estimates for when the user will finish viewing the current show when tapping the Details option.

The same goes for the Apple TV widget available in Control Center on iOS 12 and later.

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