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Misplaced distant? No drawback: Easy methods to use your iPhone as a TV distant management

Close-up of person sitting in bed holding smart phone with remote onscreen while television is on in background.

Picture: Grace Cary through Getty Pictures – Illustration: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

Each time the Roku, Hearth TV or common tv distant will get misplaced in between the sofa cushions or tossed someplace by a toddler, I am on the lookout for the person producer’s app to regulate the TV. However, if you happen to’ve bought a appropriate sensible TV, like a Roku or Hearth TV, or an Apple TV 4K, you possibly can ditch additional apps and easily use your iPhone as your new distant.

Earlier than getting began, ensure your tv is on and related to the identical community as your iPhone.

Whenever you use your iPhone as a distant management, observe that not all televisions will characteristic all of the controls. Relying on the tv, chances are you’ll not have the ability to flip it on or off, or have entry to quantity. 

Additionally: This accent permits you to add an AirTag to your Apple TV distant

Easy methods to use your iPhone as a TV distant management

Now we have a 2.four GHz community at our residence for all our sensible units, together with all sensible TVs and streaming units like our Roku TV sticks and Hearth TV sticks. Every time we wish to use AirPlay or management the TVs by way of our telephone, it solely takes us a handful of seconds to change networks.

iPhone with network settings on the screen.

Ensure your iPhone is related to the identical community because the sensible TV you wish to management.

Picture: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

You will discover your iPhone’s Management Heart by swiping down from the highest proper of your display screen.

iPhone Control Center.

Entry the Management Heart by swiping down from the highest proper of the display screen.

Picture: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

Additionally: iOS 16: Easy methods to get essentially the most out of your iPhone’s new lock display screen

The distant management button could also be in your management heart, if you cannot discover it, simply faucet on the AirPlay icon (circles with a triangle on the backside) on the high proper.

AirPlay icon and the Remote Control button on iPhone.

Choose the AirPlay icon or the Distant Management button.

Picture: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

The out there televisions will probably be in your identical community and appropriate with AirPlay. Choose the tv you wish to management.

Should you tapped on the AirPlay icon, your display screen will look one thing like the primary picture beneath. Choose which tv to regulate. 

Whenever you faucet the distant management button from the management heart, it will go straight into the distant management choices, just like the second picture beneath. Choose the tv you wish to management.

Remote control icon on iPhone.

As soon as you choose the tv you wish to management, you possibly can faucet on the little distant management on the left to entry the TV controls.

Picture: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

TV selection options on iPhone.

Picture: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

Additionally: The case for retaining your outdated iPhone

Your iPhone is now additionally a distant management to your tv or streaming gadget. 

iPhone remote control feature.

That is what the iPhone’s distant management appears to be like like. 

Picture: Maria Diaz / ZDNET

I have been attempting to make “distant boats” a factor ever since that All people Loves Raymond episode the place Frank will get one, and I do not perceive why nobody in my home desires to make it occur. It might have one thing to do with the truth that me and my husband are outnumbered by toddlers and preschoolers. However utilizing our iPhones as distant controls has nearly rendered our distant boats pointless. Although the iPhone’s distant management has restricted choices, I can lastly cease retaining monitor of all of the totally different little remotes from our streaming units that appear to be the proper dimension and form to slide in between the sofa cushions. 


Can I take advantage of my iPhone as a distant for a non-smart TV?

You possibly can if you happen to add an Apple TV 4K. In any other case, you’d need to obtain a separate app to make use of your iPhone as a distant, like a common distant app or the Hearth TV or Roku TV. Although the newer Hearth TV sensible televisions help AirPlay, the Hearth TV sticks and dice will not be appropriate with AirPlay.

Why cannot I see the distant management button on the Management Heart?

If you cannot see the distant management choice on the Management Heart and want to add it, you possibly can go to Settings, then choose Management Heart, then add the shortcuts you wish to add, together with the distant management choice.

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