Apple TV How to force quit an app

Why would I want to force quite an App?

This article explains how to close, force quit and restart an app on your Apple TV. This is sometimes necessary if the app becomes unresponsive or develops some other type of bug. Also, while Apple would probably disagree, I find forcing apps to close, so that they are not all sitting in the background, helps with performance.

How to force quite an app on the Apple TV

To do this you need to bring up the Active App Switcher carousel. This works in a similar way to how it works on an iPhone and iPad but instead of being accessed via the touchscreen is instead accessed via the Apple TV Remote control, with a quick double click.

In this example, I am in the ITV Hub App, but it’s the same for all apps.

ITV Hub App, running on an Apple TV
An example Apple TVOS App running on Apple TV
Apple TV Remote, showing the home button, which needs to be double clicked.

Double click the button which has a little TV icon on it. This will then display theActive App Switcher carousel.

Apple TV Active App Selection
The Apple TV (TVOS) active apps switcher.

You can scroll forward and backwards through this list

Apple TV Remote with the touch pad area highlighted.

When you see the app you want to close, just swipe up using the touchpad. This will close the app. In my example above the ITV Hub application is at the front, so a swipe up will close it. If I do a swipe right it would bring the Disney app to the front. Swipe left would then take me back again.

How do I switch to an active App?

Bring the app to the front using the App Switcher shown above, swiping left or right until it is at the front. Then just press once on the touch pad.

Apple TV Remote with the touch pad highlighted and instruction to do a single click to run the app.
This is incredibly useful. It allows you to park or pause a programme, switch to another app and then use the app switcher later to go straight back to where you paused the programme or app. Many people don’t know this key feature exists and always switch between apps using the main menu.

How to restart an App

So we’ve now done a forced close of the app, but how do we restart it? Well, it’s as simple as finding it again on the menu and selecting it. To get to the menu, just press the TV button or Menu.

Apple TV Remote, how to access the main menu.
Apple TV, Main Menu, showing lots of apps, and the ITV Hub being the selected app.
Apple TV Menu Screen

Use the touchpad to select the app you want to start. As you move over each app, the icon gets a little larger, in the above example, I have the ITV Hub app selected. With the App selected just do a single click on the touchpad.

Apple TV Remote - single click on touch pad to run the selected app.

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