Apple’s 2 factor authentication prompts for 4 digit code on Apple TV - Solved
By: Tom Manning - September 04, 2016

My Apple TV prompted me for a 4 digit verification code instead of a 6 digit code. What?

If you have 2 factor authentication turned on for your Apple ID account, you are familiar with receiving prompts on all of your Apple devices to ALLOW entry into your account. After you choose ALLOW, you receive a 6 digit code. This works very well and is all fairly routine if you live in Apple’s universe.

I was recently spending the evening in a hotel with my Apple TV, and I was trying to watch my purchased content. The Apple TV asked me to login so I entered my email address and password, then my iPhone prompted me to ALLOW my Apple TV into my account. After I clicked ALLOW, I was prompted for a 4 digit verification code even though my iPhone was giving me a 6 digit verification code. What the heck?

Googling the issue only brought up solutions for using Restrictions to purchase content on the Apple TV. After 30 minutes of digging, I finally found the answer.

You have to let the first attempt fail. Click ALLOW, then enter the first 4 digits of the 6 digit code into the 4 digit slot. After it fails, it will ask you to do it again. This time, append the 6 digit code to your password. For example, if your password is “password” (it shouldn’t be), and the 6 digit code is 123 456, enter:


That will allow you to login and watch your purchased content.

I have no idea why this bug exists in the Apple TV, but it does.

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