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What is an Apple TV and Do I Need One?

What is an Apple TV?

Apple TV is a set-top media center for your home TV that allows you to stream video, music, and entertainment content. 

The little black box is an inch-and-a-half tall, less than four inches along its sides and runs on a platform similar to the iPhone and iPad, which means you can download a whole host of apps and games beyond standard streaming video. They have a massive library of streaming services, including Amazon Prime, HBO Now, Hulu, DirecTV Now, and more.

Most importantly, it’s one of the easiest to use media centers on the market thanks to Apple’s straightforward design philosophy.

How Does Apple TV Work?

Apple TV, like all streaming media centers, requires an internet connection to work. You connect the device to your TV through its HDMI port. When you first turn on your Apple TV, the system will automatically walk you through the setup process. You’ll enter your Apple ID, the same one you use on your iPhone or iPad if you have one, which automatically connects the device to your Apple account. If you don’t have one, you’ll make one.

Once you’re set up, it’s time to visit the Apple TV Store to select your favorite streaming services. There are over 100 services to choose from in the store.

Apple TV comes with Siri voice controls. Users can navigate their content by pressing the microphone button on their Apple TV remote and requesting the app or movie they want to see.


What Can Apple TV Do?

In essence, Apple TV turns your television into a “smart” TV. You can rent movies or stream your collection from iTunes, stream movies and TV shows from apps like Netflix and Hulu Plus, stream music through Apple Music and Pandora, listen to podcasts and even use it to replace your traditional cable TV subscription with services like PlayStation Vue and Sling TV.


Apple TV 4K has the same fast processor that powers the iPad Pro, which makes it as powerful as most laptop computers. It also has a very fast graphics processor with enough power to turn it into a game console.

Apple TV is also hooked into the Apple ecosystem, which means it works great alongside your iPhone, iPad and Mac. This allows you to view your iCloud Photo Library on your TV, including those great “Memories” photo album videos the iPad and iPhone create automatically from your photo albums. You can also use AirPlay to ‘throw’ your iPhone or iPad screen to your TV, allowing you to interact with any app on your smartphone or tablet using your big screen television.



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