I have two third gen Apple TVs and a Macbook Pro running 10.8. I use the remote app on my iPhone and iPad all the time, but it seems silly that I have to reach for them when my Macbook is right on my lap.

I'm not looking for a remote iTunes solution or home sharing, I want to actually be able to navigate the Apple TV menus from my Mac and do things like launch Hulu+ and Netflix.

I've searched around a little and can't find anything that claims to do this. Is it possible?


I managed to control Apple TV from Mac with 1Keyboard application (http://www.eyalw.com/1keyboard) that turns Mac OS X into a bluetooth keyboard. Another app that does this is Type2Phone, probably there are even more of them.


I don't think there's any way to do that since iOS apps don't run well off an iOS device.

On a recent model Apple TV and software 5.2.1 for it, you now have three methods for controlling an TV:

  • Infrared Remote
  • iOS Remote App
  • Bluetooth Keyboard

So, unless you have software on the Mac that can control hardware that will send infrared signals to the TV you might be bound to the above control options.

  • Why do you think that apple wouldn't want me to do it? I could accept "No, there's no app for that" as an answer, but "they don't want you to" is a bold statement. To me, it just seems like an oversight given the different management paths that OS X and iOS have had until very recently with the departure of Scott Forstall. Do you have any actual facts to back up your claim that they actively do not want people to be able to do this? – MDMarra Feb 22 '13 at 18:09
  • The Apple TV is an accessory; Apple does not generally want to provide users with ways to control accessories from a computer. They do it from iOS devices. This is the same as, say, not being able to control an iPod - even in a dock - from a computer. Also, the Apple TV's main interface is a TV set, not a computer, so adding an additional layer of abstraction - giving access from a computer, where you wouldn't be playing the content - makes no sense. – Kirk McElhearn Feb 23 '13 at 7:58
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    Folks - this is actually the root of a decent answer (and potentially correct one). 1) the opinion about what "Apple" wants "you" to do is unsourced, so I removed that. I'd say add it in again if it could be clarified, or sourced or plain old just attempts to explain. 2) I think the brevity made it look more negative than @KirkMcElhearn probably intended. – bmike Apr 9 '13 at 12:45

find software that lets you use your computer as a wireless keyboard/mouse. then hook that software into the apple tv instead of a computer device. BAM, you can control your apple tv with your laptop

  • Sorry, but this answer is garbage. – MDMarra Jun 17 '13 at 11:27
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    Actually he's right... that's exactly what 1Keyboard for Mac does: eyalw.com/1keyboard – eyalw May 9 '14 at 8:53
  • As they say, that's a lot of down votes for a correct answer. Some people don't like it when you answer different... seems this user didn't bother to come back after the great reception he got for this correct answer. First and only answer. – Prof. Falken contract breached Dec 4 '14 at 17:22
  • Seriously, this is the same answer (albeit not as high-quality) as the accepted one! – gerwitz Aug 18 '16 at 7:15
  • This is the first correct answer. WHY OH WHY does it have only one point!? – iconoclast Jul 11 '17 at 20:52

I can advice to try CiderTV app from Mac AppStore. It's a remote to control 2nd and 3rd generation Apple TV from your Mac.

The app works as a bluetooth keyboard and provides simple navigation between Apple TV menus. Quite easy to pair

With CiderTV for Mac you can manage without the native remote at all (detailed quick-step manual is given on the web page and in FAQ). Besides that, the OS X version lets you to pair other remotes (ex, CiderTV for iOS or Android) with your Apple TV. For more details go for AppStore or see the web page cidertv.com

Gotta try!

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