Featured Image Credit: Photo by Ash Edmonds
The Apple TV Remote Is a “Nightmare Horror-show”
Over at Ars Technica, Steve Brykman writes about how he loves the Apple TV, but hates its remote. If you do too, you might get a laugh out of his self-described rant that eviscerates the Apple TV Remote, accusing it of emphasizing form over functionality. He’s absolutely right (see “Wrangling the Siri Remote,” 14 April 2016), and it’s surprising that Apple allowed such a poor industrial design out the door initially and then failed to fix it for the Apple TV 4K (which merely puts a white ring around the Menu button).
As someone who has owned multiple Apple TVs over the years, I can emphatically agree with Steve Brykman’s “rant”, for all the reasons he lists. It doesn’t appear that anyone at Apple with authority to make changes uses the Apple TV much.
Blame Jony Ive and his love of form over function!
The only real issue I’ve had is the symmetry issue which I solved by adding a leash via the Lightning port <https://www.apple.com/shop/product/MR662AM/A/remote-loop>. For many providers, I can stream via Apple TV, Roku, or TiVo. I find it easiest to use Apple TV and have less difficulty controlling the stream (replay, rewind, FF, etc. ) with the Apple TV remote than remotes associated with the others.
Completely agree. The ATV 2 remote sucked, the ATV 4 remote sucks even more. It has a real problem with overshoot. I switched to a NEEO universal pretty soon afterwards; the ATV remote is sitting idle, still on its first charge from a year ago. And for both of them, I had to get a no slip cover so the stupid things wouldn’t go squirting out of my hand.
I do have a case on ours, mainly because I’ve an issue with glass reaching the edge of a product. Given that one of life’s certainties is that I will drop everything.
But the case does ‘orient’ the remote correctly, the rubber covering the bottom half and a hand loop helps too. The case has magnets in it so I have it slapped on the side of the radiator in the room
All in all, I rather like the Siri Remote. I like using Siri for a start so maybe that puts me in a minority. I like that it takes over my TV power and volume buttons. I like the extreme speeds I can whizz across or down to select what I want.
My one issue is the replacement cost… 79 bucks. That’ll have a case on it in an instant, slippage or no.
The solution to using an Apple TV Remote is to just put it in the emergency storage drawer as we did when we first got ours, and then just get a Logitech Harmony Remote and just program it if you don’t have one already.
You’ll be smiling for sure!!
I like the Siri remote fine. My only problem with it is the symmetry issue, which I solved with a silicone wrap that also protects it from breaking (not that I’ve broken one) and makes it easier to spot from across the room.
While I think some physical redesign in called for, I love the button layout and gestures. I wish my cable box was this much fun to use. I’m constantly hitting the wrong centred circle button in the upper third of it… yes, there’s more than one!
I don’t usually use my AppleTV Remote except to use Siri to turn off music. Every few times we turn on our system with a Harmony remote, the Apple TV will be playing some music no one asked for. Then we tell Siri to “Turn off the music”. My wife swears it was caused by having a HomePod for a week.
But one thing I just found yesterday when watching a streaming service (Crunchyroll) is that the ATR is great at fast forwarding and reversing streaming services. So much smoother and faster than using buttons on my Harmony Remote. It does that very well.
We programmed the AppleTV to recognise the buttons from our Panasonic plasma. We use that too. It’s handy.
Lately, I found using the Apple TV Remote function built into iOS and accessed through Control Center really convenient as I usually have my iPad or iPhone nearby. If I need to enter text, a keyboard pops up, and if it’s a password, I can just yank it out of 1Password.
The AppleTV remote works OK for me (I am NOT saying it shouldn’t be improved). But I’m very much a special case: I watch from one chair, beside which is a coffee table with a standard place to put the remote down. Since the remote is Wi-Fi, not infrared, the remote need not be picked up for most actions, and can be picked up from its place correctly every time.
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