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Display Video Information
While playing a video with Netflix, Hulu Plus or most other content channels, pressing the top select button twice will display information about the video. Typically, it will show the summary and “box cover” image for the video. This works when the video is playing or paused.
Display Video Options and Turn on Subtitles
You can activate subtitles, play an alternate audio track, or select playback speakers when displaying video options. While playing a video, simply hold down the center Select button until the options screen appears. This works in most content channels, such as Netflix and Hulu Plus. The speakers option will allow you to play the audio track on any AirPlay enabled speakers.
Change TV Resolution Settings for Slow Connection
If your Internet connection is slow during peak hours, there’s an effective workaround. Go to Settings > Audio & Video > TV Resolution and change the resolution. Setting a lower screen resolution will decrease bandwidth demands, which should make it possible to stream video with a slow Internet connection. If you are watching Netflix, you can go to their website and adjust picture quality.
Improve Apple TV WiFi Reception
You can improve your Apple TV’s WiFi reception by making sure it is not obscured by any device or furniture. Put it on top of a table or bookshelf, as high up as possible. Make sure that there aren’t any electronics that may interfere with WiFi. For the most part, Apple TV works well with other electronics. My Apple TV is located in an entertainment center with other electronics, and I get perfect reception.
You can also relocate your WiFi router to an elevated location, such as the top of a bookshelf. Some WiFi routers are just not very good. I replaced my Cisco WRT-54 (a very popular router) with an Apple AirPort Extreme. Apple’s WiFi router is much more expensive, but it’s the best WiFi router I have used. The reception is amazingly good and it plays well with Apple products. In fact, I can get WiFi reception on my iPhone when I’m standing outside my building, about 500 feet away from the router, through several thick walls. The AirPort Extreme may seem expensive, but without a good WiFi router, your wireless devices can be frustrating to use.
Use Restrictions to Prevent Purchases and Access to Mature Content
By default, Apple TV allows anyone to purchase and access any content using the remote. This may be fine in your home, but if you have small children or roommates that you don’t trust, consider setting up Restrictions. For more information on Apple TV Restrictions, please read this article.
Connect Apple TV to Ethernet
Your Apple TV may be located in a WiFi dead zone. This can make it difficult to stream video. You can check Apple TV’s WiFi reception by going to Settings > General > Network. If you don’t have at least three bars, consider hooking your device up to Ethernet. A direct, wired connection to your router or broadband modem will provide faster speeds and improve video streaming. (continue…)