By default, the Apple TV plays full-screen trailers of shows from Apple TV+ and other sources on the home screen. However, you can disable it. Here’s how.
The standard set up for an Apple TV running the latest tvOS 13 software is for the device to feature the Apple TV app as the first app on the home screen. All apps in the top, first, row (Apple calls it the “Top Shelf”) of the Apple TV home screen can show large animated previews of their content.
So, with the default arrangement of apps, the TV app will often seem to take over the Apple TV with trailers of TV shows and movies that Apple is promoting. This can be annoying and potentially be scary for children, if Apple is promoting a horror movie or the latest episode of Servant, for example.
So, how do you make that stop? Well, there are couple of ways to remove or hide the Apple TV home screen trailers.
One option is to simply remove the TV app from the top row. Apps on the second row or beyond do not have the ability to do Top Shelf content previews. So, if you don’t really use the TV app, taking it off the top row is probably the best thing to do. You can move apps on the Apple TV by long-pressing on the trackpad; this will put apps into a jiggle mode just like how the iPhone and iPad works. You can then move the app to a new location.
Set your TV app to show Up Next on the home screen instead.
However, let’s say you do actually want to use the TV app and don’t want to take it off the top row. Thankfully, in tvOS 13.3, Apple has added an option that lets you customize what content the TV app will show in its Top Shelf presentation. The default is the ‘What to Watch’ mode, which means you see the panoramic trailers for movies and TV shows as chosen by Apple’s editorial teams.
The other option is called Up Next. This shows you your personal queue of currently playing and next-to-watch episodes, and you can click on a title to resume where you left off right from the home screen. This is the same Up Next queue as you’d find in the TV app itself, but conveniently elevated to the home screen of the Apple TV. To change this setting:
- Open the Settings app on the Apple TV.
- Select “Apps”.
- Select “TV”.
- Scroll down to the “Home Screen” setting.
- Click the trackpad to toggle between modes. It will be defaulted to What to Watch. Change to Up Next.
And that’s it. No more trailers for things you don’t control popping up on your Apple TV. New to Apple TV? Find this and more tips in our Getting Started guide.