Things might not look amazing even with an Apple TV 4K and a great television. Instead of counting pixels to make sure you’re receiving the best quality stream, you can find streaming statistics behind the developer menu.
It isn’t immediately obvious how to access the developer menu, but we’ve got you covered. You’ll need an Apple TV and Mac, and they need to be on the same Wi-Fi network.
How to Unlock the Developer Menu
Navigate to “Settings” on your Apple TV.
Select “Remotes and Devices” and leave the Apple TV on this screen.
You need Xcode installed on your Mac to enable the developer menu. Download Xcode from the Mac App Store and then open it.
Click “Window,” followed by “Devices and Simulators.”
Click “Pair with Apple TV” when your Apple TV appears on the list.
Enter the verification code that is displayed on your TV and click the “Connect” button. The pairing process will complete.
How to See Detailed Streaming Statistics on the Apple TV
Navigate to “Settings” on your Apple TV and select the “Developer” option.
Toggle “Playback HUD” on. Turn the option off to disable it when you have the information you need.
When you play a movie or TV show, you’ll see information about the stream overlayed on the video. Most of that information is meaningless for our purposes, but the lines of note are:
- Display Resolution—This is the resolution at which your TV is connected to your Apple TV.
- Video Display-size—This is the maximum resolution at which the currently playing video is available from the source.
- Natural-size—This is the resolution at which the video is currently being displayed.
In a perfect world, Natural-size will be the same as Video Display-size. If it isn’t, your network bandwidth might not be high enough to sustain the rates needed for high-quality video. Check that your internet speed is sufficient and make sure your router is set up correctly.
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