Apple announced its sixth-generation Apple TV this week, but it turns out one of its defining features is also available on older Apple TV models.
Apple showed off a new colour balancing feature for Apple TV during its Spring Loaded event. This feature corrects the colours of the picture from your Apple TV using the information from a connected iPhone.
Here’s how the feature works and how it can be used on older Apple TVs.
What is Apple TV’s new colour calibration feature?
The colour calibration feature won’t be officially rolled out until sometime next week when tvOS 14.5 is launched. Until then, we can tell you how it will work.
The feature is designed to compensate for some of the less accurate native colour calibrations of certain TVs, which can leave the picture from your Apple TV looking a little off.
To do this your Apple TV will use the light sensor in your iPhone to compare the colour balance to industry standard specifications. This will tailor the video output and contrast to adjust to your television.
How to activate colour balance on Apple TV
Thanks to 9to5 Mac, we have a solid breakdown of how this feature can be activated.
For starters, make sure both your iPhone and Apple TV are running the latest iOS 14.5 and tvOS 14.5 software. Your iPhone will also need to support Face ID.
Then, with your iPhone unlocked and nearby, open the settings menu on Apple TV.
In the Video and Audio menu, you’ll see a Colour Balance option.
Apple has a video guide of what will happen next, but basically you need to hold your iPhone in front of your TV with the front camera facing the television screen. An outline will appear on your TV for you to centre your iPhone. Hold it within this position no less than one inch from the screen.
The colour balance will output multiple colours onto your TV which your iPhone’s sensors will read. Once the process is complete you can compare the results of your new calibration to the old. You can choose which colour option you prefer if you aren’t satisfied with the calibration from Apple TV.
Note that TVs with Dolby Vision won’t need this feature as they already have inbuilt colour calibration.
It’s a small feature but a real godsend for anyone who finds themselves constantly fiddling with their TV settings. Remember, this will work on both the new Apple TV and the previous generation Apple TV 4K and HD models.
If you’re having issues with Disney+ on your TV, we have a guide for that too.