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Want to watch Live TV on your Apple TV? If yes, then you are in the right place to know how to do so.

If you want to watch live TV on your Apple TV either by using cable or antenna, it’s pretty much easier to set up.

Some people prefer watching the channels on the Apple TV. These channels are basically apps you install on Apple TV in order to watch anything you want.

And the good thing about streaming set-top boxes like Apple TV is that nearly everything you need for watching shows, movies and series are available, with the exception of live television. Most of these set-top boxes don’t have the traditional live television channel. 

Of course, you can easily download a network’s individual app in order to watch a livestream of their channel; however, in order to do so, you will need cable subscriptions which completely nullify the whole point of cutting the cord at the first place.

Fortunately, Apple TV has made it a lot easier with an app known as Channels. With it you can watch Live TV, get a complete cable-esque guide exactly in the same interface for your streaming apps.

What You’ll Need

In order to watch Live TV on your Apple TV, you’ll need some important things. Firstly, you’ll need an HDHomerun box along with a TV antenna which provides free over-the-air TV from networks like NBC, ABC, CBS, etc. Or your cable box which will provide many more interesting channels like ESPN, TBS, and so on.

For sure, you can watch live TV without the use of HDHomerun. You can just use your antenna or cable provider; however, you’ll have to be always switching between inputs on your TV whenever you want to watch television. So if you want to make things easier for you and hook it into the Apple TV, you’ll need the HDHomerun.

What is HDHomerun?

The HDHomerun is basically an external TV tuner that connects to your home network. Then from there, you can easily watch live television from any device in your house, provided that it’s connected to the network and the device has an app installed that can pick up live TV from a tuner.

There are three versions of the HDHomerun and they are Connect model ($110), Extend model ($180) and Prime model ($135). The Prime HDHomerun model has supports for only cable boxes, while the other two supports over-the-air TV antennae.

The Connect and Extend are very similar, but still has some little differences. The Connect model needs an 802.11ac router in order to watch live TV, while the Extend model only needs an 802.11n router in order to watch Live TV. 

Most of the newer routers we are using now have 802.11ac anyway, so you are free to select the Connect model if your router supports 802.11ac. Another good thing is, it’s actually cheaper compared to the Extend, even though the Extend comes with a newer, neat design.

So here’s how to watch live TV on Apple TV

Step 1: How to Set up Your HDHomerun

The first step to take is to set up the HDHomerun. So to install the HDHomerun, you’ll need the device, its power cord, an ethernet cable (included), and a TV antenna or cable box. 

Additionally, if you have cable, then you’ll without doubt need to contact your cable provider and let them install a CableCARD in your HDHomerun, given that the huge majority of cable channels are usually encrypted.

Once everything you need is ready, then you are good to go. Simply plug the HDHomerun into the power sockets. Then connect the TV antenna or cable box to the device’s coaxial jack.

Now use the ethernet cable to connect the HDHomerun to an empty ethernet port on your router. Then after that, the device will boot up automatically.

Step 2: Install the Channels App

The next thing to do now is to install the Channels app on your Apple TV. Also, you can download it on your iPhone or iPad. The Channels App isn’t free; you’ll need to pay some few dollars to download it. The Apple TV version costs $25 while the iOS version cost $15. This makes it one of the most expensive apps in the App Store, but considering the features of the app, the cost definitely worth it. 

Once you’ve downloaded and installed the app on your Apple TV, open the app. Then the app will automatically recognize your HDHomerun on your network. So ensure your HDHomerun is on the same network as your Apple TV. You can also verify this by clicking “Settings” at the top.

Then after that, your HDHomerun menu will appear on the screen, along with a list of channels that your antenna has grabbed.

Step 3: How to Use the Channels App

From that HDHomerun menu, you’ll be able to control and set HDHomerun settings. 

The use of the Channels app is very easy; all you need to do is to get the basics. You can either click “On Now” or “Guide” located at the top of the screen. The “On Now” tab will show you what’s playing on television currently and display it with large thumbnails.
While “Guide” will display a familiar interface where you easily can browse what’s showing on TV now, and see what’s going to be aired later on.

You’ll be taken to that channel immediately when you select anything you feel like watching. You’ll also be able to see a scrub bar at the bottom of the screen, which tells you what the TV show is, and what’s airing later at the right side of the screen.

With the Channels app, you can pause and rewind live television, and it even has a DVR feature that lets you record whatever you want so that you can watch it later. However, the DVR feature is at present still in beta, and costs $8 per month.

The HDHomerun works with any device, provided that you install the app that lets you watch live TV through a tuner. So this means you can use it with not just Channels app on Apple TV, but on VLC, on Kodi, and even the native HDHomerun’s app you can download for Windows or Mac.

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