Happy iOS & tvOS 16 week! With these updates, Apple has limited the use of the custom name you give to your devices. Here’s how to get your Channels apps reporting with their correct names again.


  • Apple has removed the ability for apps to use the unique name you give your devices.
  • This causes all of your devices to report as Apple TV or iPhone in Channels.
  • You can edit the display name yourself with the latest versions of Channels and Channels DVR Server.

iOS & tvOS 16 Changes

Starting with iOS and tvOS 16, Apple devices will no longer allow apps to use the custom name you have given your devices. Instead, it will just report the generic model name.

This becomes problemantic for Channels, as it uses this name in a few ways.

Our Play To feature lets you pick what you want to watch with your phone and have Channels play it on TV. Previously, you would recieve a list of all your unique device names to choose from. Now, it will just be a list of model names.

This unique device name is also used when showing you the list of clients in your Channels DVR Server’s web admin, and used when creating Shortcuts.

This certainly doesn’t make for a good experience.

How to fix it

With the latest versions of Channels DVR Server and Channels on the App Store, we’ve added a way to provide a custom name yourself.

Within Channels, you can visit General > Display Name in Settings and enter the unique name you would like Channels on that device be presented as.

In Channels DVR Server, find your device in the list of clients in the Clients section. Select it, and edit the name. For iOS and tvOS versions, this name will propogate down to your apps, just like Server Side Settings.

Be sure your Channels DVR Server is at version 2022.09.14.2324 or higher and your Channels app is version 5.5.0 or higher.

More updates where that came from

Along with this, there were a lot more updates and quality of life improvements in the latest update. Check out the release notes here: Channels for iOS, Channels for Apple TV, and Channels DVR Server.

  • Improved Virtual Channel experience
  • New resume options
  • Options to hide the Timeline while seeking
  • Watch a show in Random mode - It randomly picks an episode and plays back continuously in order.
  • An absolute ton of other bug fixes and improvements