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How to unlock detailed streaming statistics on Apple TV



  Apple TV logo with remote control
Peter Kotoff / Shutterstock

Things may not look great even with an Apple TV 4K and a great TV. Instead of counting pixels to ensure you receive the best quality stream, you can find flow statistics behind the developer menu.

It is not immediately obvious how to access the developer menu, but we have you covered. You need an Apple TV and Mac, and they must be on the same Wi-Fi network.

How to Unlock the Developer Menu

Navigate to “Settings” on Apple TV.

 Open Settings

Select “Remote Controls and Devices” and leave Apple TV on this screen.

 Select remote controls and devices

You need Xcode installed on your Mac to activate the Developer menu. Download Xcode from the Mac App Store and open it.

Click "Window", followed by "Devices and Simulators."

 Click Window. Click Devices and Simulators

Click "Pair with Apple TV" when Apple TV appears in the list.

 Click pair with Apple TV

Enter the confirmation code that appears on the TV and click the "Connect" button. The mating process will be completed.

 Enter the code and click connect

To see detailed streaming statistics on Apple TV

Navigate to "Settings" on Apple TV and select the "Developer" option.

 Select the developer option

Turn on “Playback HUD”. Turn off the option to disable it when you have the information you need.

 Google HUD to position

When playing a movie or TV show, you will see information about the stream posted to the video. Most of this information is meaningless for our purposes, but the note lines are:

  • Display Resolution —This is the resolution at which your TV is connected to Apple TV.
  • Video Display Size —This is the maximum resolution that the currently playing video is available from the source.
  • Natural-size —This is the resolution at which the video is currently displayed.

  Screenshot showing active HUD viewing video statistics

In a perfect world, Natural size will be the same as Video Display size. If not, your network bandwidth may not be high enough to maintain the speeds needed for high-quality video. Make sure your internet speed is adequate and make sure your router is configured properly.



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