How to Use Your iPhone or Android Phone as a Remote Control for …
If you can’t find the remote for your Android TV or Google TV, don’t like using its voice control feature, are tired of using the directional pad to type, or can’t get it to work at all, use your smartphone instead. Using your iPhone or Android phone as a virtual remote control can be more convenient, easier to use and more useful than the original remote control, so it’s definitely worth a try.
Google launched Google TV in 2010 as its first shot at a smart TV platform. When it failed to take off for various reasons, Google switched to Android TV in 2014, which saw more success on smart TVs and set-top boxes.
Now the Google TV brand has new life as a revamped interface for Android TV. It also serves as the new name for Google Play Movies & TV, the app that served as the player for movies and TV shows purchased through Google Play, but now reflects the functionality of the smart TV interface. This is the app that will turn your iPhone or Android phone into a virtual remote control.
The rebranding of Google Play Movies and TV to Google TV resulted in the bundling of the remote control functionality into the media app. Install or update it from the links below. Note that the previous standalone app, Android TV Remote Service, is still listed on Google Play, but is no longer compatible with any devices.
When you open the app for the first time, you’ll need to go through a few setup steps. If you’re on iPhone or using Android 13, you’ll need to decide if you want to receive notifications from the app. Then you will need to connect your Google account. Once you’ve done that, tap “Continue” to continue.
Next, you have the option to choose which streaming services you want the app to bundle. You can skip it for later, but the app serves as a hub for browsing content and launching it in the appropriate app, so you might as well choose your subscriptions now.
Finally, you will be asked to give the program permission to search for a nearby TV by typing “Allow” in the dialog box. It will be crucial to use the app as a remote control.
You will find a dialog box explaining the new remote. Tap “Got it” to close it, then tap the “TV Remote” button in any of the tabs. If you don’t see it, tap your profile picture, select “Google TV Settings” and make sure “Use phone as remote control” is enabled.
Now you will need to connect it to your Android TV or Google TV device. Once the app has discovered your television, tap its name to select it. Finally, enter the code that appears on your TV and tap “Connect.”
Now you are ready to use your smartphone as a remote control. Android devices also get an extra bit of convenience, as a shortcut to the remote can be accessed through the Quick Settings panel.
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