Apple TV has evolved into a 4th generation console with different storage tiers to meet the needs of the users. The new Apple TV includes an App Store and downloading capacity. You can even download games! So now that you can do so much more with Apple TV, how many gigabytes of storage will you need? This tutorial will provide you information on the different storage allotments for Apple TV, along with the differences in price and performance, so that you can decide which storage option is best for you.

The New Apple TV

The new Apple TV, or Apple TV 4K is the latest in third party video streaming from Apple. The new model allows you to view movies in 4K HDR and listen with the high end, 3D Dolby Atmos. Apple TV has accumulated so many apps to choose from, to include Netflix, Starz, HBO, ESPN, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. On top of that, you can download apps and games from the App Store. With so much to do, having enough storage is an important part of making the most of your Apple TV experience.

Apple TV has storage to allow the user to download content at no more than 200MB at a time to install and run the apps. When the user closes an app, Apple TV caches the data back to the Cloud in order to free up that space. Apple TV will also dissect the apps and download only what the user needs (the demand resources) to install and use the app. The remaining parts are also stored in the Cloud.

How Much Storage Should I Get for my Apple TV?

Apple TV subscriptions are only $9.99 per month with a 7-day free trial. (Premium channels are an additional charge.) You can purchase 32GB of storage for the new Apple TV 4K base model at around $179 which amounts to $5.59 per gigabyte. Or, you can purchase 64GB of storage for around $199 which amounts to $3.11 per gigabyte. Users can download more than 100 apps easily with the 64GB plan. Also, the larger storage plan is obviously more economical. For a difference of $20, you can double your storage. The more space you have, the more apps you can download on your Apple TV.

However, if you don’t plan on using your Apple TV so much and won’t be downloading much media, you may not need the additional storage. Or, if $199 is not in your budget, you may want to avoid any excessive charges.

  • Bandwidth v. Cache

You should also consider the amount of bandwidth you have when planning around your Apple TV usage. If your bandwidth is low, Apple TV caches your content on a flash storage. When the amount of storage increases, the amount of cache increases. This allows you to re-download and re-stream to manipulate your content. If you plan to stream most of the content with limited downloads, 32GB should be enough storage. However, if you hoard apps or you want to keep your content local on your device, 64GB is the best option for you.

  • Most HD movies and most song files are about 2 to 3 GB each in size. This type of content alone will not make the difference between needing 32GB or 64Gb for your Apple TV.

Apple TV Storage For Games

The gaming feature on Apple TV brought a new dimension to how the device is used and the amount of space a user will typically need. Apple TV allows you to download games from the App Store. Avid gamers will want to store many game apps on the console. If you want to play a complete a game series, you must have enough storage space on your console for the next game level or you will have to delete one. (If you reach your storage limit and want to download more apps, you will have to delete some applications to make room for the new ones.)

The addition of 4K to Apple TV means that the games you download will become larger and larger. Some games use far more space on your device than others. For gamers, the 64GB option is probably what is best for storage. However, if the extra $20 for the 64GB storage plan is not in your budget, you can delete the oldest games in the series to make room for the new ones.

iCloud Music Library and iCloud Photo Library for Photos and Music

Understanding how Apple TV caches content is very important to making the best decision about your storage needs. On-demand for Apple TV for photos and music is now available through Apple Music + iCloud Photo Library + iCloud Music Library. Your most recent content is cached so that it can be accessed very quickly. Content that has not been used for a while is stored in the Cloud and can be re-streamed to be used again. Accessing your photos and music by their apps provides the same cache service as other media downloads. The cache saves your storage space and may allow you to use Apple TV at only 32GB of storage.

How Much Storage Have You Used?

You can easily check the amount of storage you have used on your Apple TV:

1. Go to Settings > General > Usage > Manage Storage. Here, you can also manage your storage space by deleting some of the apps you are not using:

2. Select Trash next to the app you want to delete.

You can also access your music and photo content in the Cloud with your Apple TV.

Check Your Storage on Other Devices

Check your other devices to see if you have used up a substantial amount of storage for games, photos, and music. If you have hardly used your Mac, your iPhone or iPad for these types of content, you probably won’t use much on your Apple TV. However, if you have used up all of the space on your device and are now using the Cloud or an external hard drive to store your content, it’s likely that you will need the 64GB plan for your Apple TV.

Apple will add new features to your Apply TV in the near future. These new features will demand even more space than what you require now. Consider this when you decide on a storage size for your device.

How Many Other People Will Use Your Apple TV?

The 32GB and 64GB options for Apple Tv is modest considering how the device will be used. The number of people who will use your Apple TV is important. Those family members and friends who are authorized to download and install apps on your device will account for even more storage needs beyond your own. If more than one person can download on your Apple TV and play games, the 64GB plan will ensure that everyone can enjoy it without worrying about having enough space.

Check the Apple Forums

A great way to decide on how much storage you should get for your Apple TV is to visit the Apple forums where other users share their experiences with the same products. These forums will give you more insight as to your own personal experience with streaming content and the amount of storage space you really need. Some of the forums allow you to ask questions about your product.

Contact Apple Support

If you have further questions about your Apple TV, the Apple TV comes with its own free technical support by phone for the first 90 days from your purchase date. The Genius Bar at the Apple Store will also provide you with assistance beyond the warranty date for your device.