Siri has at all times been one of many Apple TV’s greatest options. On a fourth-generation Apple TV or Apple TV 4K, the voice assistant can shortly launch movies, tune to stay TV channels, and supply search outcomes for particular genres.
But till lately, Apple didn’t supply a hands-free approach to make use of Siri on an Apple TV, like Amazon provides with Fire TV and Alexa, or like Google provides with Chromecast, Android TV, and Google Assistant. If you needed to manage the Apple TV, you needed to attain for the distant.
That modified with iOS 12.2, which helps you to use hands-free Siri voice instructions by means of an iPhone or iPad. Once it’s all arrange, you may say issues like “Hey Siri, tune to ESPN on Apple TV,” or “Hey Siri, watch Game of Thrones season eight, episode 4 on the living-room TV,” and Apple will deal with the remainder.
Here’s a whole information to getting located with hands-free Siri voice instructions:
Step 1: Enable “Hey Siri” in iOS
By enabling hands-free Siri in your iPhone or iPad, you can begin watching issues on Apple TV with simply voice instructions, even when your system is locked.
To set this up, head to Settings in your iOS system, choose “Siri & Search,” after which toggle on “Listen for ‘Hey Siri.’” You’ll have to learn a number of pattern instructions to show Siri your voice. Once you’ve carried out that, be certain that “Allow Siri When Locked” is enabled as nicely.
Repeat this step for every other iPhones or iPads you wish to use with the Apple TV.
Step 2: Sign into iCloud on iOS and Apple TV
On your iPhone or iPad, head to Settings and search for a “Sign in” choice on the prime of the display, after which signal into your iCloud account. If you solely see your identify as a substitute of a sign-in choice, you’re already good to go.
You’ll additionally should signal into the identical iCloud account on the Apple TV. Head to Settings > Accounts > iCloud, after which choose “Sign in.” (We’ll cowl how you can allow Apple TV voice instructions for different customers with separate iCloud accounts shortly.)
Step 3: Enable AirPlay 2 on Apple TV
To obtain instructions from an iOS system, your Apple TV should have AirPlay 2 enabled. On the Apple TV, head to Settings > AirPlay and ensure it says “On.” Then, scroll down and choose “Room” from the identical menu.
You’ll now see a “Start Using AirPlay 2” immediate on the TV. As instructed, unlock your iOS system, activate Bluetooth, and maintain it near the Apple TV, after which hit “Connect” when prompted in your iOS system to finish the pairing. (If this immediate doesn’t seem, attempt locking and unlocking your system once more.) Finally, choose the room wherein your Apple TV resides. Later, you’ll be capable of consult with this room by identify in your voice instructions.
Step 4: Install suitable apps
As of this writing, greater than 80 Apple TV apps help common search with Siri, and most of them can launch movies instantly in response to voice instructions. Just be certain that the app you wish to use seems on the Apple TV search support list, and that you simply’ve already signed into the app. (We’ll cowl particular voice instructions within the subsequent part.)
If you’re subscribed to PlayStation Vue, FuboTV, or DirecTV Now, you should utilize voice instructions to observe any stay TV channel included with these companies.
If a suitable video app is put in in your iPhone or iPad, however not on Apple TV, the video will as a substitute launch utilizing Apple’s AirPlay protocol. This, nonetheless, requires you to unlock your iOS system, and it precludes you from utilizing different apps that require video or sound. You’re higher off putting in the TV app as a substitute.
Step 5: Enable HDMI-CEC
With HDMI-CEC enabled on each the Apple TV and your tv, Siri will be capable of activate the TV earlier than taking part in a video. On Apple TV, head to Settings > Remotes and Devices, and ensure “Control TVs and Receivers” is about to “On.”
Then, in your TV’s settings, search for a “CEC” choice and allow it. As Apple points out, the precise identify of this selection can differ for some TVs, so search for a setting with “Link” or “Sync” within the identify, resembling Aquos Link or Bravia Sync, if a CEC choice isn’t displayed particularly.
Optional: Invite others to make use of voice instructions
If you will have different customers at dwelling with separate iCloud accounts, you may invite them to manage the Apple TV from their very own iPhones or iPads. Open the Home app in your iOS system, press the house icon within the top-left nook, after which choose “Invite…” beneath the People part. Finally, enter the e-mail handle related to the iCloud account of whoever you want to invite.
The different particular person will then get an invitation message on their iOS system. Once they’ve accepted, they’ll be capable of management Apple TV with their very own iPhones and iPads.
Step 5: Check out some voice instructions
Finally, you’re prepared to manage your Apple TV hands-free. Here are some voice instructions to take a look at:
- ”Hey Siri, play Brooklyn Nine-Nine on Apple TV”
- ”Hey Siri, watch Red Oaks on the lounge TV.”
- ”Hey Siri, watch Game of Thrones season eight, episode 4 on the living-room TV.”
- ”Hey Siri, rewind one minute on Apple TV.”
- ”Hey Siri, quick ahead 5 minutes on Apple TV.”
- ”Hey Siri, activate closed captions on Apple TV.”
Limitations and workarounds
While hands-free Siri controls are good to have on Apple TV, they’re removed from good. Here are a few of the points you would possibly run into:
Most notably, Netflix doesn’t allow you to instantly launch a video with voice instructions. To full the method, you’ll have to seize a distant—or open the digital Apple TV distant in Control Center on iOS—and hit choose to start playback.
An identical frustration can emerge if the Apple TV tries steering you into the mistaken app for given program. After signing up for HBO by means of Apple TV Channels, for example, Apple would possibly immediate you to put in HBO Go as a substitute of launching exhibits instantly. If this occurs, seize the distant and scroll down whereas viewing the data web page for any present till you see the “How to Watch” part. Select your most popular supply, and Apple TV ought to keep in mind it sooner or later.
It’s doable that even after following the setup directions above, you would possibly nonetheless run into points getting voice instructions to work, together with an error wherein Siri says, “I couldn’t find any TVs nearby. Make sure you’re on the same Wi-Fi.” If this occurs, attempt disabling iCloud and AirPlay 2 help, after which operating by means of setup once more. In the worst-case state of affairs, you would possibly have to carry out a manufacturing facility reset on the Apple TV (Settings > System > Reset) to get issues working correctly.
In common, Siri is best at responding to “Play” than “Watch” once you’re attempting to begin a selected present. (With the latter, the assistant tends to listen to “What’s” as a substitute of “Watch,” leading to a failed search try.)
When asking taking part in a selected present or channel, Siri ought to mechanically choose the suitable streaming service, resembling Hulu or PlayStation Vue; if it doesn’t, you may embrace the service identify in your voice command.