How to Completely Hide or Replace Apple TV Channels

In 2007 when the Apple TV was first launched it had less than a dozen channels. However, since that time the number of apps (as some people call them) or channels has increased a lot. Today we see the latest Apple TV with nearly 60 channels, and still counting; depending of course on where you live - and still more coming each and every month.

Of course it's great that we're being given such a choice of channels, but the fact is that most people watch less than five channels, so all the other channels mean that you've now got a lot of clutter on your Apple TV home screen. And having all those extra channels on the home screen means that you must do a lot of clicking to find the one you want.

We're really happy to see that Apple have addressed this, and in a rare move on Apple's part they're now allowing you to customize the interface of your Apple TV, and even hide channels you're not interested in seeing.

How to Replace Apple TV Channels

You can now customize your Apple TV experience and re-arrange channels showing on your home screen. This is great, because now you can put them in the order of your choice. You might choose to move your favorite channels to the top of the screen. Please note that the following channels cannot be moved - Movies, Music, TV shows, iTunes Radio and Computer channels.

Follow this guide if you wish to re-arrange your Apple TV channels:

  • Select the channel you want to move using the Apple TV remote;
  • While you have the channel selected, press and hold the black button in the center of the remote. You'll notice the channel begin wobbling;
  • Move the channel up, down, right or left using the remote's circular D-ring. As you do this you'll see all the other channels shift;
  • Once you have the channel in the position you want, press the black button in the center again to set the channel in place;

Hiding Apple TV Channels

If moving channels is not enough for you and you prefer to clean up the Home Screen on your Apple TV then you may prefer to completely hide the channels you're not interested in. And again, the following channels can't be hidden - Music, TV shows, Movies, iTunes Radio and Computer channels, but all the others are fair game.

Follow this guide if you wish to hide your Apple TV channels:

  • Select the channel you wish to hide using the Apple TV remote;
  • With the channel still selected, press and hold the black button in the center of the remote. You'll see the channel begin wobbling;
  • To call up a sub-menu press the Play/Pause button. There will only be two options on the sub-menu - Hide This Item, or Cancel;
  • Press the black button in the center once to hide the channel, and it will be removed;

Restoring Apple TV Channels

It should be noted that when you hide a channel on your Apple TV it's not the same as deleting an app from your iPhone. Hiding a channel just means that it's removed from your home screen, but it's always there, still hiding below the surface: you can always 'un-hide' it and have it re-appear on your home screen.

  • Select the Settings app on the home screen of your Apple TV by navigating to its icon and pressing the black button in the center of the remote control;
  • Select the 'Main Menu' command on the Settings screen;
  • On the next screen you'll see a list of all the channels on your Apple TV - this list includes both the shown and hidden channels. Now select the channel you wish to un-hide and press the black button in the center of the Apple TV remote. You'll see the status of the channel alter from 'Hide' to 'Show';
  • Now go through all the channels on the list and un-hide any that you wish to see back on the home screen;