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Swiss Fiber TV Service 'Salt' Launches Alternative Apple TV 4K Remote Control for Frustrated Customers


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Swiss telco Salt, which includes an Apple TV 4K in its domestic broadband TV bundle, has today launched an "alternative" bespoke Apple TV remote control for users of its 250+ channel television service.

Costing just under 20 Swiss francs, the optional remote was reportedly developed in close collaboration with Apple, after a sizable section of Salt TV's customer base apparently complained about the poor usability of the Apple Remote that comes with every Apple TV 4K.

Thanks to Apple's input, the alternative remote doesn't require any pairing with Apple TV and works out of the box. It includes directional arrows in place of the Siri Remote's glass Touch surface, a power button in addition to a Menu button, along with separate volume and channel rockers and traditional media playback buttons.

There's no microphone button in evidence, presumably because Siri on Apple TV isn't officially available in Switzerland, and there's no numerical channel buttons because tvOS doesn't support the function. Otherwise, it resembles a standard TV remote that should be more amenable to Salt TV's users, who can also look forward to an updated Salt TV app interface on Apple TV.

It's unclear if this is a one-off Apple TV hardware collaboration between Apple and a regional third-party, although having said that, Apple recently made Microsoft and Sony controllers compatible with tvOS and iOS, so maybe this indicates a new trend.

Either way, Apple has obviously listened to feedback and decided its Siri Remote isn't the most optimal design for enjoying multi-channel TV navigation after all. The alternative remote control for Salt TV can be set up to work with almost all standard TV sets, and is available to order on the Salt online store.

Article Link: Swiss Fiber TV Service 'Salt' Launches Alternative Apple TV 4K Remote Control for Frustrated Customers
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macrumors member
Sep 26, 2018
I dislike the current ATV remote quite a bit. Too small, the multifunction glass touch pad is a PITA. The entire remote needs backlit buttons. At least with the last update they changed how the ATV turns on. The default now is that you have to press the menu button. Before I was always turning on the TV inadvertently just by picking up the remote.


macrumors 603
Jul 13, 2008
I don't get the hate for the apple remote. With normal buttons you don't get that more movement playfulness you get with a touch screen. Icons don't just move left right they kind of have a bounce. So animation on a dedicated button won't have this. It will just plop to the next icon without animation like on an devices with a button keypad.
I like using my phone for the controller anyway you don't really have to look at it with the layout they have, even hitting the buttons I don't have to look at my phone.
The touch pad on the normal apple remote is decent id like them to make a touch screen haptic touchpad like they do the Macs trackpad. I mean they sell a separate trackpad that feels exactly like the MacBook's trackpad so they could. The control on that is much better and the clicks would feel much better than the hard click on the appletv remote.
I still prefer the apple remote over any shield remote or fire stick I've played with that's for sure.


Mar 10, 2009
I find the stock remote a pain. I use it, but I find it so slippery and I seem to lose grip on it with it ending up in the cushion crevice of my chair. Also, whenever I pick it up, I usually end up picking the wrong end as it doesn’t really have an indication by feel alone.


macrumors member
Jun 22, 2006

Return Zero

macrumors 6502a
Oct 2, 2013
Ever since I put those silicone cases on my remotes, I have zero issues with them. I get the white cases so they are easier to see. Other than being slick and easy to lose, I don't understand the hatred of the remote. It is incredibly slick and versatile. If you want single tap arrow buttons, the touch pad allows you to operate it that way. You never have to readjust your grip because it's the perfect size. The battery lasts ages and gives you warnings when it is low. I'll admit it takes a little getting used to, but I love it now and would never want to go back to a traditional remote like this.

Compile 'em all

macrumors 601
Apr 6, 2005
I agree the standard remote isn’t awesome, but how much do you really need to use it? Once you start watching, the remote use is pretty limited.

I just use the remote on my iPhone anyway.

This is why the average joe shouldn't be allowed anywhere near the design and development of hardware or software. Did you really just suggest that finding your iPhone, Swiping on it, Tapping on the remote app/widget, is easier than a dedicated dumb piece of hardware that is always next to the couch?

Macrumors never seizes to amaze me :D


macrumors 6502
May 13, 2019
I like my Apple TV remote, it’s way more functional and very easy to learn. I think these people either don’t want to learn or don’t have access to Siri to help them. But hey, nothing wrong with giving consumers the option.


macrumors regular
Apr 30, 2010
Based on the interest mentioned in above comments, I guess I should just buy a ton of their remotes and re-sell them to people living outside of Switzerland for a 30% markup :p
You will make money. Do it before this remote is offered outside of Switzerland.


macrumors 68020
Jun 18, 2009
I'll take four please.

The ATV touch remote is the single worst remote among all of my OTT devices of any generation. Adding the ring around the Menu button did help slightly.

I still use the aluminum ATV remote with the ATV in our house and normally keep my iPad / iPhone handy and use the remote app with my three ATVs that I use for work (testing, demos).


macrumors 68040
Feb 7, 2011
Hmm, I don't have a problem with the standard ATV remote but when my Mom visited me she just could not get the hang of the touch pad part. Might be handy for guests and come to think of it some functions don't work very well on the touch part.
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macrumors 6502
Nov 29, 2005
Regina, SK, Canada
Instant buy if they ship to Canada, and if it’s Bluetooth.

The Apple remote is good for swiping through content when reviewing the previous episode, for example. Other than that, it’s basically trash. One of those remote covers from Amazon keeps it from sliding into the couch. But I paired an old cable box remote to get actual buttons.


macrumors G3
Sep 12, 2017
Sunnyvale, CA
Based on the interest mentioned in above comments, I guess I should just buy a ton of their remotes and re-sell them to people living outside of Switzerland for a 30% markup :p
30% ?? Hell you could probably charge $40 + shipping and only lose a couple sales. Sure there might be a few who actually even like it (rather than just tolerate it) but even some of us rabid Apple fans hate that damn remote lol.
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Chaka Jon

macrumors regular
Sep 10, 2014
Palm Springs
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