How to Connect an Apple TV to Wi-Fi Without a Remote

The Remote app is as good as the Siri Remote (and harder to lose)

What to Know

  • First, connect your Apple TV to your modem or router with an Ethernet cable.
  • Next, use the iOS Remote app or a third-party Android app to sync with your Apple TV.
  • Disconnect the Ethernet cable, and then go to Settings > Network > Wi-Fi and select your network.

This article shows how to get your Apple TV on Wi-Fi if you've misplaced the included remote. Instructions apply to devices running tvOS 9 and later.

How to Connect an Apple TV to Wi-Fi With No Remote

If you've misplaced your Apple TV remote (or Siri Remote), you can still control your streaming box, but you'll need to take some extra steps. Here's how to do it whether you have an iPhone or an Android device.

On an iPhone

  1. Connect your Apple TV to your router with an Ethernet cable using the port on the back of the box.

    The Ethernet port on a 4th-generation Apple TV
  2. Ensure your phone is connected to the Wi-Fi network associated with your router, and then open the Settings app.

  3. Select Control Center.

  4. If Apple TV Remote isn't listed under Included Controls, tap the plus sign next to it under More Controls.

    Settings > Control Center > Apple TV Remote on an iPhone
  5. To access the Remote app, open your Control Center:

    • iOS 12 or later: Swipe down from the upper-right corner of your screen.
    • iOS 11 and earlier: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen.
  6. Select the Apple TV Remote icon.

  7. Choose your Apple TV from the menu at the top.

    The Apple TV Remote icon in the iOS Control Center
  8. A four-digit code will appear on your TV screen. Enter it on your phone, and the Remote app will pair with the Apple TV. You can now control your Apple TV with your phone.

  9. Disconnect the Ethernet cable.

  10. On the Apple TV, select Settings from the Home screen.

    The Settings app on an Apple TV
  11. Go to Network.

    The Network heading in Apple TV settings
  12. Select Wi-Fi.

    The Wi-Fi option in Apple TV network settings
  13. Choose your Wi-Fi network and enter the password, if applicable.

  14. Your Apple TV will connect to the network, and you can continue using your remote app to control it.

On an Android Device

If you're running an Android device, the instructions are similar, but they'll start differently. Because Android doesn't have an Apple-made remote app, you'll need to download a third-party option from the Google Play Store. The process of syncing the app to your Apple TV will be about the same: Make sure your phone is connected to the same network associated with your router, and then you'll receive a code to enter on your phone. Then, start with Step 9 above.

Alternatively, Use Ethernet

If it's convenient, it may be better to skip Wi-Fi altogether and keep your Apple TV connected to your router with a wired connection. An Ethernet cable can provide a faster, more stable connection than wireless, and it's less vulnerable to interference than Wi-Fi. If your router is close to your TV, consider this option. You can still use a remote app to control your Apple TV.

  • How do I connect an Apple TV to hotel Wi-Fi?

    Traveling with an Apple TV and connecting to the hotel's Wi-Fi can be challenging since it doesn't have a built-in web browser. Go to Settings > Network > Wi-Fi and see if it detects a captive network; if so, follow the instructions on your iOS device. Or, the hotel's tech team may be willing to add your Apple TV to the network manually using its MAC address.

  • How do I change Wi-Fi on an Apple TV?

    To change your Apple TV's Wi-Fi network, open Settings, and select Network > Wi-Fi. When nearby networks appear, select a new Wi-Fi network. Enter the new network's password and select Done > OK.

  • How do I forget a Wi-Fi network on an Apple TV?

    To forget a Wi-Fi network on an Apple TV, open Settings and select Network > Wi-Fi. Open the Wi-Fi network you want to forget and select Forget Network. Your Apple TV will no longer automatically connect to that network in the future.

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