How to Get Your Instagram Photos on Apple TV

BY George Tinari

Published 16 Feb 2017

Unfortunately, Instagram has yet to release an official app for the Apple TV. But that doesn’t mean third-party options haven’t swept in to save the day. One such app is Tangent for Instagram, an exclusive for the Apple TV that puts your photos on the big screen.

While it doesn’t duplicate the entire experience of the Instagram app, it does let you browse your photos and videos on your television. You can also see certain forms of activity including likes, comments, hashtags, and other users’ profiles to a degree.

Download Tangent for Instagram

Tangent is free, so download it from the App Store on your Apple TV. Once you open it, you’ll have to visit the website provided to authorize access from Instagram. Type in the address on your computer or iPhone, then punch in the code on your TV screen when prompted.

That’s all it takes to log in with Tangent.

Bear in mind the app is only available for Apple TV, not for iOS. You can even just say “Tangent” into your Siri remote to find it.

Using Tangent

Once you log in you’re immediately taken to your own Instagram profile. Here you can browse all of your photos and videos. Tangent goes pretty far back and will load photos and videos as you scroll, but generally doesn’t have very much lag at all.

If you select a photo or video, it enlarges to fill the left side of the screen leaving the right for likes and comments. You can also see a list of tagged people here if there are any.

Over in the settings, the final main feature is the ability to switch between multiple accounts with ease. Just hit Switch Account to choose a different one or log in with a new one for the list.

A Tangent About Tangent

That about wraps up the functionality of this app. Tangent is meant mostly as a viewer for all of your own Instagram photos, so you can’t expect much else. If the intent is to showcase images, I do at least which the images expanded to full screen instead of always showing the social stuff. You can’t even contribute to it anyway.

You can’t like or comment from Tangent, you’ll have to do that on your iPhone. It seems fair to ditch the comment feature for a TV app, but it’d be pretty easy to throw in the ability to like photos from here.

You also can’t view anything in your Home feed, activity, or even really much of other people’s profiles. You can click users in like or comment lists to see their profiles, but it was very hit or miss. Sometimes the profiles loaded and other times they didn’t.

Still a Great App for Viewing Your Photos

Overall Tangent is the best app I know of for getting your own Instagram photos onto your Apple TV, but it has tremendous potential to be a full-fledged Instagram app. I hope the developers recognize that soon and start implementing more features. Even a simple search bar would go a long way.

That said, if all you want is your own photos, ignore all my criticisms. Tangent works beautifully for that.

Download Tangent for Apple TV:

Tangent for Instagram in the App Store (free)