The Apple TV remote isn’t much to look at, in fact, compared to most of your remotes, it is rather simple. At first glance you don’t see a lot of remote control features. You have the large round directional button, the select button, a play/pause button and a menu button — not much really there.
8 Apple TV Remote Control Features
It may be simple to look at, but there is a lot that you can do with the Apple TV remote control.
1. Skipping Chapters
You’re watching a movie and you want to skip the opening sequence, or jump ahead to the next scene, it is actually pretty simple with the Apple TV remote. Simply press the Down button on the directional control while the video is playing and then press Left or Right to skip chapters in the appropriate direction.
If the show you are watching doesn’t have chapters then the Apple TV will skip in 30 second increments or 1/20th of the show length (whichever is longer)
2. Jump to a Different Chapter
If you want to jump to where you left off in the movie then you will need the chapter menu. You can find it by pressing Select while watching your show. Then press the Left and Right buttons to navigate to the chapter you want to view.
3. Quick Return to the Main Menu
Sometimes you end up deep inside layers of menus and it can be a hassle to back out of all of them. No matter where you are or what you are watching you can quickly return to the main menu by pressing and holding the Menu button for a few seconds.
4. Put Apple TV into Sleep Mode
This doesn’t shut the system down, but allows you to put it in sleep mode and save some power while you do something else with your entertainment system. Hold down the Play/Pause button until your Apple TV goes to sleep.
5. Mark iTunes Shows as Watched or Unwatched
In your iTunes list, select the show you’d like to mark as watched or unwatched and press the Select button until you see the status change. This only works with iTunes shows.
6. Change the Order of you Apple Channels
Everyone has one or two favorite channels they watch all the time and it is annoying when they are all the way at the bottom of the list. You can move your favorites to the top of the list by selecting the channel you’d like to move and holding the Select button until you see the channel jumping a bit, then using the Left and Right buttons move the show up or down on your list. Press Select when you have it in the correct place to drop it.
You can use this same approach to rearrange the icons on your main menu. Chose the icon you want to move, then press and hold the Select button until you see the icon jumping. Now use your Left and Right buttons to move the icon where you want it, then hit Select to drop it in place.
7. Hiding Channels
Just like there are channels that you will always watch, there are also channels that you will never watch. You can get rid of these by hiding them. Select the icon you want to get rid of then press and hold the Select button until the icon starts jumping. Press the Play/Pause button and select Hide this Item from the pop-up menu.
8. Closed Captioning
Closed captioning can be a wonderful feature for the hard of hearing, or if you are like me it is also entertaining. I use it on dubbed Animes because I love seeing how things are translated differently, sometimes the difference is well worth a laugh. To get captioning on your present show hold the Up button to get the info bar and then the Select button.
Apple Remote App
As functional as the remote can be, it can still be pretty inconvenient when you need to scroll through a long list. If you own an iOS device you can download the Apple Remote app that will let you control navigation and playback on your Apple TV. Using your iPhone or iPad is also a lot easier when you need to spell something out. It gives you all the remote control features on something that you are not as likely to lose.