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Six Colors

by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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By Jason Snell

And all for the want of an Apple TV remote

This is the story of how the new Apple TV remote cost me hundreds of dollars, but in a good way.

We were happy earlier this month to take delivery of a new Apple TV 4K, to replace one that I had given to my daughter when she returned to college last fall. (I thought a new model might have been imminent—oops.) And along with that new Apple TV box came a new remote, which has earned a lot of praise for not being the old Apple TV Siri Remote.

It was a single button on that remote that started it all: the new Power button. While the Apple TV has been able to control external devices for a while now, the Power button is so much more explicit: You should be able to use this button to turn your TV on and off.

Which is great, except that I have a complicated setup that includes a home-theater receiver and a TiVo, neither of which can be controlled via HDMI-CEC1, the protocol that Apple TV uses to control other devices.…

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