Making the most of AirPlay and your Apple TV

Making the most of AirPlay and your Apple TV

​Many of our clients are enjoying an Apple TV in their entertainment system.  It is an incredibly useful piece of equipment that allows people to do almost anything they’d need, entertainment-wise.  Users can rent and purchase movies and TV shows using their iTunes account.  They can buy music too.  In addition to the paid Apple services, there’s also access to YouTube, Vimeo, Vevo and Netflix.  These features have become so popular with home entertainment that nearly every single project that we do has at least one Apple TV included.

But perhaps the most underrated feature of the Apple TV is AirPlay.  All of the above ‘Apps’ and features previously discussed are all items on the main menu of the Apple TV.  You use your remote, highlight the item, then select what you want to enjoy.  AirPlay doesn’t work like that.  

AirPlay is a service that allows almost any Apple device on your home network to see your Apple TV, and share its content with the Apple TV. This feature is amazingly simple, yet gets unused because people often forget it exists. AirPlay originally started as an audio-only service that allowed users to send their music to the Apple TV, but then expanded to include pictures and videos and now it can even mirror the entire screen of your iDevice onto your television.

So, how do you use it?  Easy!  Grab your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch and start playing whatever it is you want to listen to or watch.  Once your content is playing on your device, swipe up from the bottom of your device screen to pop up the grey Options menu.  You’ll see an AirPlay icon near the middle of the Options, press it.  A new list will appear showing you all of the options for where your content will play from.  By default, your device will be selected.  Select the Apple TV option.  (If you have more than one Apple TV, you’ll see more options in the list).  Give your system a moment to catch-up, and VOILA! Your music (or pictures and videos) is now magically playing through your Apple TV! 

See these pictures for step-by step instructions:

Step 1: Begin playing what you want to listen to or watch
Step 1: Begin playing what you want to listen to or watch

 

Step 2: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to open up the Options menu
Step 2: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to open up the Options menu

 

 

Step 3: Press the AirPlay button
Step 3: Press the AirPlay button

 

 

Step 4: Select AppleTV from the list

Step 4: Select AppleTV from the list