It’s usually our goal to hide our electronics as much as possible.  This is especially true for all of the things that are hooked up to our TVs.  It’s so much nicer to be able to focus on the screen rather than all of the “boxes” and wires that go with it.

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So, this leads us to the Apple TV in the family room.  For the longest time, we left it sitting on top of the TV stand, which, honestly wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t great either.  The Apple TV itself was small enough to not be a huge visual distraction, but all of the wires coming out of the back were clunky and it was a pain to dust around.  The other issue we had with it (which might not have been a problem for everyone) was getting it to recognize button pushes on the remote while laying on the floor to watch TV.  I think we must have the MOST uncomfortable couch in that room, so we spend quite a bit of time watching TV from the floor and it was just annoying to have to hold the remote way up high to get the Apple TV to recognize it.

So, today I wanted to share the super simple solution that fixed all of this for us – 3M picture hanging strips.  We applied the picture hanging strips to the bottom of the Apple TV and used them to stick it onto the back of the TV.  Unconventional, but it works great.  It’s completely out of site and (here’s the best part) the remote control still works!!

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When Chad first suggested this, I was skeptical, figuring that the remote would never work with the Apple TV stuck to the back of the TV, but we figured we didn’t have much to lose since we could easily remove the strips if it turned out be a failure.  And I’m so glad we gave it a shot.  The signal from the remote must bounce off of the ceiling/walls/windows because it still finds the Apple TV just fine.  We find we sometimes need to point the remote up a little – like more toward the top of the TV than the center of the screen – but it’s really something that’s hardly noticeable.  It’s one of those things that just works – most of the time we completely forget that the Apple TV isn’t in the TV stand along with everything else.

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And, as for “everything else”, that mostly refers to our media center PC that we use as a DVR.  Unlike the Apple TV, it is located behind the solid wood doors of the TV stand and it actually receives signals from the remote control through a dongle.

The dongle.  (source)

The dongle. (source)

Similar to the Apple TV, we used to leave the dongle laying on the TV stand and it was very unobtrusive.  It did, however, have the same “dusting issue” as the Apple TV.  I was forever dropping it behind the TV stand or knocking it out of alignment when I dusted so that it would have to be re-adjusted for the remote control to work the next time we wanted to watch TV.  (Do most people have this many issues with dusting?  Maybe this isn’t a normal problem to have.)  Regardless, after the picture hanging strips worked so well with the Apple TV, I decided to try attaching the dongle to the TV as well.  I just used one of the extra 3M adhesive strips to stick it straight to the TV (no clips or anything) right behind the glass bezel.  And, same as the Apple TV, it is working out great for us!

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The remote functions perfectly, it’s basically out of site, and I’m free to dust with abandon.  Ha!

Anyway, I know this post must read like a 3M commercial – sorry about that.  This isn’t sponsored in any way (they have no clue who I am, I promise).  I just wanted to share a super simple tip that is working so well to hide some of our TV-related “clutter”.  I’d totally encourage you to give it a try!

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