Apple TV 4: Using the Siri Remote

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Menu and Home buttons are placed directly below the active area of the touchpad. It looks like they are part of the touchpad, however, the surface adjacent to these buttons is inactive. The Menu button is used to go back, show the main menu and display the screen saver. The Home button can also return the user to the main menu or launch the App Switcher interface.

The Siri button is located below the Menu button. This button launches Siri, which receives voice input using two small microphones located at the top of the remote. The play/pause button is underneath the Siri button. It can be used to play, pause, and start videos directly from most thumbnails. Volume controls are situated to the right of the Siri and play/pause buttons. This multi-function button controls the volume on your television.

Basic Use of the Siri Remote

The Siri remote operates in a uniform way across Apple TV, with a few exceptions. App developers are able to override the functionality of most buttons. For example, the play/pause button may serve as acceleration for a car racing game. Apart from these exceptions, the buttons tend to serve the same function across tvOS. Let’s take a look at basic operations of the remote within tvOS.

Touchpad: Use the touchpad’s touch surface to change the focus of selection between objects on the screen. Move your finger up, down, left and right to put the focus on an item. Click the touchpad to select an item. Rotate your finger slowly over the center of the touchpad to “wiggle” an item. This is useful if you’re not sure which item is selected. It also provides some “eye candy” by manipulating the 3D parallax effect.

Apple TV 4 Siri Remote Touchpad

Menu: Press the Menu button once to move back to the previous screen. For example, if you are in Settings > General > Screensaver, pressing the menu button once will take you back to Settings > General. Press and hold the Menu button to return to the home screen. On the home screen, press the menu button once to go to the top icon. Press it again to manually launch the screen saver.

Apple TV 4 Siri Remote Menu Button

Home: The Home button resembles a television set. Press the button once to go back to the home screen, no matter how deep you are nested in an app or menu. Double tap the Home button to launch the App Switcher. We’ll take a closer look at the App Switcher in a later section. Be careful with the Home button, as pressing it within most video games will exit the game and take you back to the home screen.

Apple TV 4 Siri Remote Home Button

Siri: Hold down the Siri button, wait for the multi-colored line to appear, and speak your command while continuing to hold down the button. The TV volume is automatically lowered when initiating a Siri request. The screen is also dimmed. To dismiss Siri, press the Menu button. This will also clear the screen of any information that Siri presents. Check out the section about Siri commands later in this article for more information. (continue…)

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