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The Apple TV’s touchpad swipes and misses at being a good remote

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It’s rare to find a button that is almost universally hated, but the infamous touchpad on the Apple TV’s Siri Remote might be the exception. Even over half a decade after its introduction, it stands as one of the most reviled pieces of hardware around.

The failings of the Apple TV remote don’t just stem from a bad touchpad (and don’t get me wrong: it is bad) but from a larger misunderstanding on Apple’s part of what makes a good remote and the fundamental purpose of those devices.

The typical TV remote is big and ugly, but it’s also extremely easy to find and navigate thanks to differing patterns of buttons that make it clear what you’re touching even without checking. Generally speaking, no one has ever been too confused about how to...

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