How to Turn Your iPhone into a TV remote

How to Turn Your iPhone into a TV remote
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After a long day of work it is time to relax. On a typical day you might reach for the remote to turn on some much needed television. More often than not, the remote is missing. Where could it be? In the couch, under the television stand, maybe you accidentally took it upstairs. Ugh! The last thing you want to do is walk all the way upstairs to go look for the remote, even worse, discover it wasn’t up there.

Since the beginning of the millennium, we have seen technology becoming an ever changing, pleasure seeking, ride-of-a-lifetime. It seems like every week new technology can make our lives easier than ever before. In 2015, we don’t even need to know where the television remote is. We can have all the features of a traditional remote control, plus more, right there on the iPhone nestled in your pocket.

Many TV streaming devices are capable of using the iPhone as a remote. These devices include the Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and AT&T U-Verse. Some of these free TV remote applications work better than others, but no matter which device you own, their remote apps are definitely worth a try. You have nothing to lose (besides your traditional remote).

Apple TV Remote 6a0120a5580826970c01b7c77539f1970b

With the Remote app by Apple you can be in control of all your music and video from anywhere in your house. Remote is designed to be in perfect sync with iTunes. With Remote you can shuffle music, create playlists, and search your entire iTunes library. The Remote application is more importantly capable of controlling your Apple TV. The app can also enhance your TV searching experience by providing a virtual keyboard. Remote will save you time, as typing on a keyboard is twice as fast as punching in each letter one-by-one. Remote is free, get it here.

AT&T U-Verse Easy Remote screenshot_024

If you subscribe to U-Verse you’ll definitely want to try this app. It’s easy to use and robust with accessibility features like voice control and one touch access to closed-captioning. The size of the app’s font can be adjusted to accommodate people with less-than-perfect eyesight. Its major downfall is that it lacks a volume control, but reviewers seem to continue to use the beneficial app despite it. To download U-Verse Easy Remote, simply search “easy remote” in the App Store or get it here.

Roku Remote Roku-3-with-Headphones-1024x597

The Roku remote application is one of the better remote apps out there. If you have a Roku device, you will surely see value in this application. This remote app will allow you to control your Roku Player or Roku TV Stick right from your iPhone. Even better yet, this particular app is chock full of features. Use this app to see which movies are coming soon and type faster with the built-in keyboard. You can even push your iPhone’s photos, music, and videos to your television for public viewing via the Roku app. Get the remote application for your Roku device here.

Amazon Fire TV Remote AmazonFireTV_0

The Amazon Fire TV isn’t one of the most popular television streaming devices out there, yet, however it has enough of a following that the device is worth a mention. Interestingly, its lack of popularity hasn’t stopped Amazing from producing one of the best remote applications available for the iPhone to date. Rated nearly 5 stars on the App Store, its obvious that people love their new Amazon Fire TV and its virtual remote. Users say its exceptionally easy to use and the voice recognition software works well. This application is also backwards compatible with the Amazon Fire TV Stick! Get the Amazon Fire TV and download the remote application here.

Other Devices

The iPhone is undoubtedly a powerful and useful phone. Even though it can act as a remote for many streaming devices, it won’t work with your actual TV set, Dish, or DirecTV boxes. The iPhone lacks an infrared blaster, and relies on your Wi-Fi connection to transmit the signals to your set top box, which most older devices aren’t capable of.


If you wish to control your actual television set and all of the other devices in your home entertainment center, there are inexpensive IR blaster kits available on Amazon. HiRemote plugs into any iPhone headphone jack. The cute dongle interacts with the HiRemote app on your iPhone for full control over all of your electronics. There is a setup process required; however the effort should be well worth the results.

Forget about your traditional TV remote that’s been missing for days. Sit down and relax; because when it comes to watching television, “there’s an app for that.”

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