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Turn Off Send Data to Apple
By default, Apple TV is set to transmit diagnostic information to Apple. For many users, this won’t be a problem. Their Internet speeds are fast enough to support streaming and sending data to Apple. If you are having problems with Hulu Plus, try turning off “Send Data to Apple”. Go to Settings > General > Send Data to Apple to turn this setting off.
Restart Apple TV
Sometimes Apple TV can get bogged down. Perhaps a content channel, which is really an app, has gone awry. Restarting your Apple TV can release any corrupted memory. This may work, but I haven’t needed to restart my Apple TV in several months. Apple TV is very stable and mature these days. To restart your Apple TV, go to Settings > General > Restart. You can also hold the down and menu button for 6 seconds, until the light starts to flash rapidly. This is also useful in the unlikely event that your Apple TV freezes.
Update Apple TV
You may have Apple TV set to do manual updates, which is a good idea. Apple TV will usually remind you of an update, however, you may have dismissed it and forgot. Apart from the very bad 6.0 update, Apple TV updates have been pretty stable. Every upgrade offers better performance and more stability. That said, it never hurts to do a quick search on Google to find out if the latest Apple TV update is safe. This site (Appledystopia) usually has an article about each Apple TV update. You can upgrade Apple TV by going to Settings > General > Update Software. Keep in mind that some updates can take up to an hour to run.
Restore Apple TV to Factory Settings
This option is a desperate measure, but it may work. You can reset Apple TV to factory settings by going to Settings > General > Reset, then click Restore. This process will also install the latest update. This is a bit painful, as you will have to reconfigure the device. You will need to re-enter all those passwords and set up your remote, WiFi, AirPlay, etc. Consider this option if you notice problems with other channels on Apple TV, not just Hulu Plus.
Subtitles or Audio Track Out of Sync?
Rarely, when I am watching Hulu Plus, I notice that the subtitles or audio track are out of sync. This problem will sometimes resolve itself. If the problem persists, simply press the menu button on the remote to go back, and then press the pause/play button to resume the show. This always solves the issue for me.
This seems to happen when my ISP is having problems. It is not a defect with Hulu Plus or Apple TV. It can happen when there is a sudden decrease in network bandwidth. Subtitles add to network bandwidth requirements. This can actually be a significant strain.
If you are repeatedly seeing “An Error Occurred Loading This Content” on the screen, try turning off subtitles. You can do this by holding down the center select button until you see the subtitle options. This has to be done when the video is playing or paused. You can also navigate to Settings > Audio & Video > Subtitle Language to turn off subtitles. I have found that once these are turned off, I no longer get the “An Error Occurred Loading This Content” message. When my ISP gets back up to speed, subtitles work without a problem.
Watch Hulu Plus Late at Night
If your ISP or Hulu are too busy, you can always watch your favorite program later at night. I sometimes intend to watch Hulu Plus, but there’s too many pauses. I end up watching something else and come back to it later at night. It’s always good to have Netflix and Hulu Plus. If one is having problems, usually the other one works. If bandwidth is an issue, it’s possible to get Netflix to work with slower Internet speeds. There’s also loads of free content on Apple TV. The new PBS channel is a treasure trove of quality programming. My rule is that if I have three problems with a streaming service, I move on to something else and come back to it later in the evening. After 10pm, people start going to sleep and Internet bandwidth improves.
Hulu Plus for Apple TV is a great content channel. It’s definitely worth subscribing to the service. These tips should help you cope with most problems. If you have any other tips, please leave a comment below. If it’s a good recommendation, I’ll add it to this article.