Get help playing or streaming content on your Apple TV

If you need help with video quality or can't play a game, listen to music, or stream content, learn what to do.

Test your Internet speed

To stream content, we recommend a broadband Internet connection and these connection speeds:

  • 8 Mbit/s or faster for 1080p HD (high definition) content
  • 6 Mbit/s or faster for 720p content
  • 2.5 Mbit/s or faster for SD (standard definition) content

To check your Internet speed, ask your Internet service provider (ISP) or use an online bandwidth test on a device that's on the same network as your Apple TV. Internet connection speeds vary depending on your ISP and other factors.

If you meet the recommended speed and still need help, try the steps below.

Check your Internet connection

If you use Wi-Fi:

  1. Make sure that your Wi-Fi router is 802.11a/g/n/ac compatible. 
  2. Move your Apple TV closer to your base station and check for interference
  3. Check the signal strength on your Apple TV:
    • Apple TV (4th generation): Go to Settings > Network.
    • Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation): Go to Settings > General > About.

On Apple TV (4th generation), we recommend connecting to a 5GHz Wi-Fi network instead of 2.4GHz.

If you still need help, connect your Apple TV to your Wi-Fi router using an Ethernet cable. If you already use an Ethernet connection, make sure your cables are firmly connected and not frayed or cut. You might need to update your Wi-Fi router or check its settings. Contact the router's manufacturer or your ISP for help.

Force close the app or restart your Apple TV

If you have an Apple TV (4th generation), double press the Home button and swipe left or right on the Touch surface to find the app with the issue. Swipe up on the app to close it and press Menu to return to the Home screen. Then reopen the app.

If you still need help or if you have an Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation), restart your Apple TV.

Update the software on your Apple TV

  • Apple TV (4th generation): Go to Settings > System > Software Updates > Update Software.
  • Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation): Go to Settings > General > Update Software.

Switch to Standard Definition

If you tried the above steps and still can't play movies or TV shows from iTunes, switch from High Definition (HD) to Standard Definition (SD):

  • Apple TV (4th generation): Go to Settings > Apps > iTunes Movies and TV Shows > Video Resolution and select Standard Definition. 
  • Apple TV (2nd and 3rd generation): Go to Settings > iTunes Store and select Standard Definition. 

Your iTunes Store purchases and rentals will now be in SD. You might be able to switch between HD and SD content in third-party apps. Check the settings within the app or contact the developer for help.

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