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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > iPhone, iPad & iPod > iPhone Remote with Apple TV: can't control content not on Apple TV?

iPhone Remote with Apple TV: can't control content not on Apple TV?
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BoulderDash
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Jul 14, 2008, 11:14 PM
 
Hey there,
I have a few Apple TVs... so I keep all of my content (iTunes music and movies and iPhoto photos) on a B&W G3 that I use as a server, so that they can all have access to all of the media. None of the Apple TVs actually have any files on them (I bought the 40 GB versions since I knew I'd just be going with streaming), as I just stream music, movies and photos from the B&W G3 server. (All connected via ethernet, so there are no problems with buffering, etc.)

It appears that using the Remote application for iPhone, that one cannot control an Apple TV's streamed content (content that it streams from a server, and does not actually reside on the Apple TV).

Is this how it goes with Apple TVs and streamed content... or am I setting it up incorrectly? I've successfully been able to control iTunes on the B&W G3 server, so I think I know what I'm doing.

Thanks for any insight,
BD
     
BoulderDash  (op)
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Jul 23, 2008, 09:24 AM
 
Has anyone been able to control content that is streamed (not stored) on their Apple TV, with the iPhone Remote?

Thanks,
BD
     
Big-C
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Jul 23, 2008, 10:15 AM
 
Hi,
I have a very similar setup as you (mine's all wireless, otherwise the same). I ran the Remote app when it came out, paired it with my appletv's, and am able to start/stop movies, pick songs & play them, type using the iphone keyboard. So as near as I can tell, it's working properly.

Are you talking about streaming content to your iphone? Not sure that I've been any help, but it is working as expected for me...
     
BoulderDash  (op)
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Jul 24, 2008, 11:26 AM
 
Hi there,
Nope, I'm not talking about streaming media to the iPhone (though, that would be great). I'm simply talking about the fact that iPhone Remote DOES NOT see media on the Apple TV that is not stored directly on the Apple TV.

Since my Apple TV streams everything from my B&W G3, and I store absolutely nothing on my Apple TV, I get:

"No Movies - You can download movies using iTunes"
"No Songs - You can download songs using iTunes"

Is this how iPhone Remote is supposed to work... that you can only see items directly stored on the Apple TV? Lame.
BD
     
Big-C
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Jul 24, 2008, 02:37 PM
 
Just to be clear, I keep nothing but photo's and music on my appletv - no movies or tv shows whatsoever.

Like you, navigating to movies/tv shows, you still see what's on your computer. This is how it works on mine, and it sounds like how it works on yours. Selecting a movie streams it across the network to the TV.

So I'm just confirming that my iphone's Remote application DOES see my movies & tv shows, even though they are on my computer and not directly on the apple tv. I can select them and they play on the tv just fine.

The only "manual" step that I have to perform is to Sync from iTunes when I add a new movie/tv show, since I have automatic syncing off.

While I don't know enough to provide helpful info on how to make it work for you, I can confirm that it does indeed work, so it might be worth pursuing tweaking your setup.
     
BoulderDash  (op)
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Jul 24, 2008, 02:57 PM
 
Let me ask you this: are you navigating your Apple TV, or your server's iTunes with iPhone Remote?

If I use iPhone Remote to choose my "Apple TV (Living Room)" Library... I get nothing (the above "No Movies" message). And that's probably because nothing is stored on my "Apple TV (Living Room)", but using my Apple TV white remote I can still select media to stream (UNLIKE with iPhone Remote, which just reports "No Movies"... so iPhone Remote doesn't even come close to replacing the Apple TV white remote).

I can see all of my media if I use iPhone Remote to view iTunes on my B&W G3... but that only plays the movies in the tiny viewer on my B&W G3, not on my Apple TV.

I guess I imagined that Apple would make Remote smart enough to access everything from the Apple TV that its white remote can (read: files stored elsewhere).

Thanks for the info, though! It simply appears that iPhone Remote cannot access anything on an Apple TV that is not stored directly on it. Back to the white remote.
BD
     
BoulderDash  (op)
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Jul 24, 2008, 03:13 PM
 
I'm curious about this statement that you made:

"Like you, navigating to movies/tv shows, you still see what's on your computer. This is how it works on mine, and it sounds like how it works on yours. Selecting a movie streams it across the network to the TV."

Just to reinforce, I do not see what is on my computer (B&W G3) when I navigate my Apple TV... I get the "No Movies" message. So, that's not quite spot-on. Again, I see nothing when I navigate my Apple TV.

Are you then saying that by navigating iTunes on your server with iPhone Remote (in my case, the B&W G3), that you're able to push playback to an Apple TV, and not to the host machine? Mine only plays it back on the B&W G3.

iPhone Remote and Apple TVs... meh.
BD
     
BRussell
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Jul 24, 2008, 04:05 PM
 
I have a mix of content stored on my AppleTV and streamed from iTunes on my Mac. I can definitely see and play all of it with the iPhone Remote, even what's not on AppleTV's hard drive.

Just out of curiosity, I unpaired the iPhone Remote from the iTunes on my Mac. It still sees everything that the AppleTV sees, whether streamed from the Mac or stored on the AppleTV's hard drive.

But I have heard other people say it doesn't work for them. I don't know why it works for some people and not for others. Could it have something to do with turning off all syncing with AppleTV?
     
BoulderDash  (op)
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Jul 24, 2008, 04:55 PM
 
Okay,
Here's how I got my iPhone Remote to see content that wasn't stored on my Apple TV: it all came down to how I'd originally connected my Apple TV to the server running iTunes. First, from Apple:

Apple TV: Differences between pairing and sharing (software version 2.x)

Since I'd always NOT wanted to sync any media to my Apple TV, I'd chosen the "Sharing" method for my Apple TV (under "Computers" selecting "Add Shared iTunes Library") for the last year or so. Using this method of connection for my Apple TV resulted in iPhone Remote NOT being able to see and shared media.

So, I disconnected my Apple TV from it's "Shared iTunes Library" and connected it using the "Pairing" method instead (under "Computers" selecting "Connect to iTunes"). This enabled my iPhone Remote to now see all of the media on my Apple TV that was shared/streamed to it, but not stored on it.

Since I wanted to continue to NOT store anything on my Apple TV, I then selected "Custom Sync" and unchecked every single Sync option.

All of the above resulted in my iPhone Remote being able to see media NOT stored on it, but "PAIRED" to it (NOT "SHARED" to it). Again, see the above Apple page for differences between the two, knowing that you need to "pair" not "share" to see media not stored on the Apple TV.

Good luck,
BD
     
Atheist
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Jul 24, 2008, 07:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by BoulderDash View Post
So, I disconnected my Apple TV from it's "Shared iTunes Library" and connected it using the "Pairing" method instead (under "Computers" selecting "Connect to iTunes"). This enabled my iPhone Remote to now see all of the media on my Apple TV that was shared/streamed to it, but not stored on it.

Since I wanted to continue to NOT store anything on my Apple TV, I then selected "Custom Sync" and unchecked every single Sync option.
Classic Apple BS. Sometimes they really like to make things amazingly convoluted.
     
Big-C
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Jul 25, 2008, 12:15 PM
 
BD,

Thanks for the recap. I wasn't sure how this was going to play out, but it's nice that you were able to figure it out, and then have the good form to share with us!! Nice.

The only caveat I have noticed with pairing mode is that when I add a move to my Movies or TV Shows folder, I have to manually initiate a sync from my computer in order to see those new items on the Apple TV (like you, I have custom sync activated). I really like my apple tv, but wish I didn't have to manually deal with it when adding shows.

On another note, how many people here organize their movies by making them TV shows? I found a script called "Set Video Kind of Selected." Using this, I keep movies I've seen (but don't want to delete) in a separate "Movies" TV Show, and just leave the new releases, or shows I haven't seen in the Movies folder.
( Last edited by Big-C; Jul 26, 2008 at 01:06 PM. )
     
AKcrab
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Mar 11, 2009, 11:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by BoulderDash View Post
Okay,
So, I disconnected my Apple TV from it's "Shared iTunes Library" and connected it using the "Pairing" method instead (under "Computers" selecting "Connect to iTunes"). This enabled my iPhone Remote to now see all of the media on my Apple TV that was shared/streamed to it, but not stored on it.

Since I wanted to continue to NOT store anything on my Apple TV, I then selected "Custom Sync" and unchecked every single Sync option.
My big gripe about this: You can't see your whole photo library, *only* what's synced. (Unless they've changed it recently.)

I really like the way remote works, maybe it's worth it to me to go ahead and sync my whole photo library since I don't store anything else on it.
     
   
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