How to Adjust Screensaver and Sleep Timers on Apple TV

Shortly after I bought and set up my brand new Apple TV, I realized that it didn’t automatically go to sleep as fast as I would have preferred it to. Setting your Apple TV to go to sleep quicker means you can save on your energy bill. At the same time, if you want to keep it running, you’re free to prolong the device’s running state. Changing the amount of time it takes for your Apple TV to go to sleep is easily done.

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Even the future of television needs sleep | Hadrian / Shutterstock.com

Likewise, while the new aerial motion screensavers are great, you might find that it either takes too long for them to appear on screen or perhaps don’t come on quick enough. Like sleep settings, your screensaver preferences are simple to alter too.

How to Adjust Sleep Settings

To adjust how long it takes your Apple TV to go to sleep after inactivity, visit the Home screen and click the Settings app. Choose General when the app opens.

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From here, swipe down to Sleep After and click it. A menu overlay will appear with your sleep time options: after 15 minutes of inactivity, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 5 hours or 10 hours. You can also choose Never if you never want the Apple TV to go to sleep on its own, though this is not recommended.

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Tip: If you want to put the Apple TV to sleep on your own, press and hold the Home button on your Siri remote and select Sleep on screen. On the other hand, if you notice your Apple TV oddly going to sleep and staying asleep, you might need to troubleshoot and enter recovery mode.

How to Adjust Screensaver Settings

To change your Apple TV screensaver and the amount of time it takes to appear after inactivity, first click the Settings app on the Home screen and choose General once again.

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This time, swipe down to Screensaver. Here you have a few more options to toy around with. You can pick the type of screensavers you want to display. Your choices are aerial (on by default and animated,) some of Apple’s photos, your own photos from iCloud Photo Library or images via Home Sharing.

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In the Screensaver menu, you can also specify whether you want to automatically download new aerial videos daily, weekly, or monthly and if you want screensavers to display during music playback.

Lastly, as with Sleep After for sleep settings, click Start After to choose when you want the screensaver to come on: after 2 minutes, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes or 30 minutes. Once again, you can also select Never.

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Apple’s new aerial screensavers are a great way to liven up your living room when you aren’t actively using the new Apple TV.

Parting Thoughts

Personally, I found that the default Start After setting meant that the screensavers took too long to appear, so I shortened it down to only 5 minutes. I also thought the Apple TV took far too long to sleep, so I dialed that down as well. As always, because the settings are available to you, customize them to your liking.

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