Users report bricked Apple TVs after updating to 5.1 firmware

by tomek on November 21, 2012

AppleInsider discoverd a growing thread at the Apple Support Communities website where users report issues after updating their Apple TVs (2nd and 3rd generation) to the latest Apple TV 5.1 software. It looks like many Apple TVs are getting bricked after running the update:

After running the software update option on the Apple TV, a number of users indicated that the hardware simply displayed a blinking light, while nothing but a black screen is shown on their HDTV. Others found that their Apple TV could no longer connect to their network after updating, rendering the streaming-centric device useless.

According to AppleInsider, manually downgrading the Apple TV software to version 5.0.2 has been discovered to work as a possible fix:

The process requires installing an IPSW restore file from Apple, plugging the Apple TV into a Mac or PC with a micro USB cable, and force restoring the software through iTunes.

Remember that if you’ve previously saved your Apple TV’s firmware signatures (SHSH blobs) using TinyUmbrella or aTV Flash (black), you can downgrade Apple TV 2 software using Seas0nPass.

Here are the IPSW restore files:

Apple TV 2:,1_5.0.2_9B830 _Restore.ipsw

Apple TV 3:,1_5.0.2_9B830 _Restore.ipsw

Apple TV software update 5.1 has been released on September 24, 2012. The biggest changes included support for Shared Photo Streams, the ability to switch between iTunes accounts and to send audio content from Apple TV to AirPlay-enabled speakers and devices

  • JRA

    Not really “bricked” if there’s a fix though? A little bit sensationalist.

  • PoorKitty

    Lets hope someone skilled enough will find a way to downgrade even lower on AT3 and maybe maybe then be able to hack it. I for sure would be one of those who would pay go get my AT3 jailbroken.

  • Prof. Peabody

    Not sensationalist, it’s bricked and doesn’t work any more because of the update. That’s pretty much the definition.

    Also, the only way to fix it, is to connect to a computer using a cable that most people won’t have. The update was released on a Friday during the work day also so a lot of folks came home, updated, and now are completely screwed for watching TV until Saturday when they can go to the mall to get the weird little cable that they need, (that’s not actually included with the Apple TV).

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