How to update the Apple TV: Get the latest software on 4K and older models

Make sure you're running the latest version of tvOS

How to update the Apple TV
The Ambient is reader-powered. If you click through using links on the site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

The Apple TV is one of our top streaming boxes, due to its intuitive UI and support for a broad range of standards.

The latest version of tvOS brings some big additional features: multi-user support, Apple Arcade, game controller compatibility, and more.

Read this: How to pair a PS4 or Xbox One controller with Apple TV

But to make sure you're getting all the latest features, you'll need to keep your Apple TV up to date. You can do this manually, or choose to have the TV update itself when a new software refresh rolls out.

Below, we'll walk you through the process for both, and break it down for the different Apple TV models.

How to update Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD

If you're using one of the latest Apple TV devices, here's how to update it.

1. Boot up the Apple TV and open the Settings app.
2. Go to System.
3. Select Software Updates.
4. Select Update Software.
5. If it discovers there's an available update, select Download and Install. (Alternatively, you can select Update Later).
6. Let it download the update and allow the Apple TV to restart, before the update is installed. Don't unplug it while it's doing it.

To check the current software version running, go to Settings > General > About. You'll also see the current version displayed on the left side of the screen in the Software Updates section.

How to update the Apple TV

How to turn on automatic updates on Apple TV

Both the Apple TV 4K and HD models allow for automatic updates. You might wonder why this isn't the default, and there are various reasons. For example, Apple has been known to roll out buggy software updates, and so you might want to maintain a position where you can avoid those.

1. Open the Settings app.
2. Select System.
3. Select Software Updates.
4. Select Automatically Update.

How to update Apple TV 3rd Generation

For the older model, here's what you need to do:

1. Open Settings.
2. Go to General.
3. Go to Software Updates.
4. Select Update Software.
5. If an update is available, select it and wait for the Apple TV to download and install.

More handy Apple TV how-tos

TAGGED    apple    televisions

Related stories

televisions Best Roku compared: Choose the right Roku plus tips and tricks
apple The best Siri commands for controlling HomeKit and the Apple HomePod
apple The best Apple TV apps: Games, entertainment and 4K essentials
apple 101 of the best Siri Easter eggs: Funny things to ask Apple's assistant
televisions Google Assistant TV guide: Which models to pick from and what you can control
smart home Logitech Harmony Express remote is dead... long live the free Elite replacement