How to ‘turn off’ your Apple TV

For cord-cutters, the Apple TV has proven a miraculous device. With Apple TV apps, you can access almost anything you’d get through a cable or satellite subscription—although in some cases, you may need to “borrow” a friend or family member’s cable credentials. Using it is easy and intuitive, for the most part, although its uber-minimal remote control can leave some questions unanswered, like… How do I turn off Apple TV?

How to turn off Apple TV

It’s a tricky question. Neither the device or the accompanying Siri remote have a power button. Technically, you can’t turn off an Apple TV. You can put it to sleep, though.

To do this, press and hold the display icon button (the button you use to wake the device) for five seconds. Then, an onscreen message will pop up asking “Sleep now?” You can choose “Sleep” or “Cancel.” If you want the device to go to sleep, select the former.

If you really want to turn off Apple TV (and not just put it to sleep), you’ll have unplug the device. That’s not a very practical solution, but hey, it works.

How to ‘turn off’ your Apple TV

If you own an older Apple TV—3rd generation or earlier—the action is similar. On the aluminum or white Apple Remote, tap and hold the Pause/Play button for five seconds. Alternatively, you can head into the device’s settings and select “Sleep Now” to put it to sleep.

To wake up the Apple TV after it’s been put to sleep, simply tap any button on the remote or the Touch surface at the top. From there, you can resume watching Netflix, movies, playing games, or whatever else you want to use your set-top box for.

While it may seem weird that you can’t turn off Apple TV, typically, turning off the device isn’t something you need to worry about. Your Apple TV will turn off on its own after a period of inactivity. (You can customize this length of time in Settings, General, and then tap Sleep After.)