This is probably the coolest thing I have ever done with a smart phone, setting up the HTC One as a TV remote. This might have something to do with my childhood when I discovered that one of my older brothers’ high school friends had a watch that had the same technology, to tune into any TV via infrared and turn it on or off. Ohh the shopping mall TV’s that we terrorised and switched off.
With the HTC One, you can do more than just turn on and off the TV. You can change channel, execute most of the key features on your remote and even set it up to control your cable TV DVR or other digital set top boxes supported.
These days we have a plethora of devices that we carry on us every day, and on top of that it seems with each new electronic device, set top box or item we get for the household, comes with it’s own remote. Instead figuring out where you left one of these remotes, which almost inevitably always happens, why don’t you just use the smart phone you carry everywhere with you and usually know where it is. Why not use your phone as a universal remote of sorts.
“This is probably the coolest thing I have ever done with a smart phone…”
How to setup the HTC One as a TV Remote
- Unlock the screen of the HTC One and fire up the TV app that comes preinstalled on the device. (If you cannot see it on the home screens, navigate to the applications list.)
- The first screen that appears explains about the TV guide which can be skipped if you don’t intend to use this. Hit Next to continue.
- Next step will request you to select your country from a list, followed by your state. Select accordingly.
- Depending on your selected options from the previous 2 steps, you might have more than 1 TV service provider to choose from. In my case in Australia, I only had “Free View.” Select “Free View”.NB: Setting up Foxtel is possible.
- From the list of channels that appear, select the ones you are keen on watching. I just selected them all for good measure. Select “Next”.
- The next screen prompts you to select any on demand services if available, you can skip this if not relevant or not interested. Select “Next”.
- The next step allows you to tell the HTC One which TV shows you prefer. You can choose not to or to pick a few and to proceed you will need to hit the “Finish” button. You will be prompted to accept an HTC privacy information collection dialogue window.
- An overlay tutorial window will appear that explains some of the interface of the app. Close once you feel you understand the instructions.
- Tap of the remote icon in the top bar of the application, next to the power off icon.
- The fun part begins. The app will explain that in this next part you can now configure the smartphone to controls TV’s, cable boxes and home theatre boxes. For this tutorial we will be only setting up a TV. Select “Start”.
- Next you will be promoted to name the remote you are setting up. As you can set up multiple remote on the HTC for different TV’s, we recommend giving it the name of the brand of TV you are setting up. Otherwise you can choose something you can remember
- Select TV from the 3 options available, TV, Cable box or Home theater. Hit “Next.”
- A list of TV brands will appear, you can either the search bar provided or scroll down to find your television’s brand name. Select it and hit “Next” once found.
- You will be prompted to turn off you TV. Proceed to do so then hit the “Next” button.
- The app will now try a few different TV codes that correspond with you TV so you can control it. Point your HTC One towards the TV and press the “Turn on TV” button.
- After a while the question, “Did the TV turn on?” will appear. Select Yes or No accordingly. If you select No, the HTC One will try a different code even if your TV did turn on and we repeat this and the last step as many times as necessary. If you select Yes, the HTC One will lock that option in as the correct one for your TV.
- Once your TV has turned on and you have selected “Yes,” the next step will test to see if the “Input Toggle” of your TV is responding to the smartphone. If so, hit “Yes” to continue.
- A “setup successfully completed” dialogue window will appear and once dismissed, you can test out your new HTC One remote for your TV.
Setting up programs
Finding the TV Brand settings
How is this even possible?
What no one probably told you is that the HTC One’s power button is also an infrared sensor. In fact if you look at it now, you will probably notice that it is not black in colour but that dark red synonymous with infrared (if you are old enough to remember old infrared capable mobile phones of the past).
This feature on the HTC One that allows you to use the smart phone as a TV remote, is my second favourite feature on the phone. That is because Beats Audio is my favourite feature like I mentioned in our video review of the HTC one. The number 2 position aside, the feature is not just cool but also mighty useful. The only thing I would improve on is the size of the quick access icons placed in the notification bar as they were too small for my fingers to hit accurately. Then again that might just be Android drawback. Now to figure out how to add this TV app as a quick access, lock screen widget and the system will be flawless. Happy tunning!
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