- ADVERTISEMENT -

How to control TV with Amazon Echo & Alexa {2021}

- ADVERTISEMENT -

As nice as it would be for any TV to include a simple local area access feature, most TVs still rely on good old infrared (IR) to get commands. This isn’t the best news for anyone looking to convert their living room to Smart Home 2.0, but there are a few tools available that make it a little easier to manage than you think.

If you have a new and smart TV, you may be able to enable an Alexa Skill to control your device, while if your TV is a little older or doesn’t support any Alexa Skills, there may be some hardware solutions available. We will show you three tricks we have tried to allow you to control your TV with Amazon Echo and & Alexa.

- ADVERTISEMENT -

Setting Up:

  • When the prompt comes from the device to “take your Alexa Voice Remote & press the Play button.”
  • Then you should choose the language & Wi-Fi network to your according.
  • You have to input the password.
  • Thereafter you should select “Connect.”
  • Check which Amazon account you would like to connect to.
  • Let Amazon know if you want it to keep the Wi-Fi password & if you would like to enable parental control.
  • Now, go to “Choose Apps” & check which application you want to get.
  • When you are prepared, hit the “Play” tab on the remote & wait to complete the process.

Connect Fire TV with Echo or Similar Devices

You need to connect Fire TV with similar devices, follow the steps mentioned below.

  • Get started by launching the Alexa application on your device.
  • Then you should tap on the hamburger icon in the upper left-hand side of the screen.
  • You should select “Music, Video & Books.”
  • Choose “Fire TV.”
  • Thereafter go with the instructions of set up.
  • Now, select “Link Devices.”

SONY:

  • Navigate to the Sony TV’s home screen & open the “TV Control Setup with the Amazon Alexa application.
  • Then you should select or make a Google account.
  • You have to rename the TV name to recognize it.
  • Turn on “Sony’s Alexa skill.”
  • Now, go with the other instructions to connect the TV with the Echo.

ROKU:

  • To get started, downloading the “Quick Remote for Alexa & Roku” application on the tablet or phone.
  • Then you have to sign in to the Amazon account.

 If the TV & Alexa require to be linked to the same Wi-Fi connection

  • To begin with, launch the “Alexa” application on your phone.
  • Navigate to the application menu.
  • Then you should select “Skills & Games.”
  • Go to the search bar & input the “Quick Remote” into it.
  • Hit on entering, then tap on “Enable ti Use.”

LG:

  • Navigate to the LG TV’s home screen, begin the “Set-Up TV for Amazon Alexa” application.
  • This needs you to make an LG account if you don’t have one already.
  • Give a name for the TV to quickly identify.
  • Continue to the mobile set up screen, while also opening the “Alexa” phone application.
  • Turn on the “LG SmarTthinQ skill.”.
  • Connect with Amazon & TV accounts.
  • Now, go with the rest of the setup instructions that the TV will show.

How to control smart TV via Alexa Skills

VIZIO:

  • First & foremost, begin the Vizio TV’s “SmartCast” on your home screen.
  • Then you should tap on the “Up” button on your remote.
  • Navigate to the “Extras.”
  • Select “Voice Settings.”
  • Now, choose “Pair Display.”
  • Visit the following link on the phone & sign in to MyVizio.
  • Input the PIN. You will be allowed to view it on the TV screen.
  • Now, launch the “Alexa” application once more to turn on Alexa-related skills & link accounts.

This solution works best with the latest TVs enabled with smart features. For the purposes of this example, I chose to highlight the Vizio SmartCast Alexa Skill, as I have a Vizio smart TV (plus, it’s super easy to set up!).

  1. Open your Amazon Alexa app on your smartphone.
  2. Tap the ‘ icon in the menu (three horizontal lines in the upper left corner).
  3. Tap on Skills and Games.
  4. Search for Vizio SmartCast.
  5. Select the red icon that appears.
  6. Enable Vizio SmartCast Skill.
  7. Log in to Vizio from the Alexa app.

Now that your Vizio smart TV is connected to your Amazon Echo device, you can ask Alexa things like “Alexa, turn on TV”, “Alexa, turn down the volume by 5”, or even “Alexa, switch input to HDMI 1. on Living TV. While skills like these won’t completely eliminate the need for remote control for all viewing functions, they are a useful tool to help you enjoy hands-free TV.

- ADVERTISEMENT -

How to control TV with Amazon Fire TV Blaster

This solution is best for those with older TVs that may not have smart features. Amazon Fire TV Blaster is an infrared (IR) controller that allows the Amazon Echo to communicate with non-smart TVs and multimedia devices. It doesn’t have Alexa or built-in microphones or speakers, so you need Amazon Echo to work.

  1. Plug in the Fire TV Blaster and place it in a direct line of sight on your devices (TV and Echo).
    • Note that the Blaster should be no more than a meter away from the TV and echo, and the LED should be facing where you usually sit.
  2. Download the latest version of the Fire TV app for your mobile device.
  3. Select New devices in the app.
  4. Select the Fire TV Blaster and follow the onscreen instructions in the app to calibrate your device with the Fire TV app.
  5. The Fire TV app will walk you through how to set up your devices.

After setting up all the programs with TV, Echo, Fire TV Blaster, and any other device paired with Blaster, you can now ask Alexa questions or give commands such as “Alexa, turn on the TV” “Alexa, increase the volume on the receiver” and even ”Alexa, tune to RAI 1 on cable/satellite. It’s a pretty cool and inexpensive way to add some smarts to your previous setup!

Control TV with Amazon Echo via Logitech Harmony Hub

This solution works well on older or newer TVs. By itself, the Harmony Hub can give you the ability to control pretty much everything connected to your Wi-Fi network, as well as everything you can IR control in one app. It’s also possible to create small scripts within Harmony, so a single press of the button turns the TV on, sets the input you want it to be, and can even be triggered on a schedule. It’s an impressive setup, made even more impressive when you add an Amazon Echo.

- ADVERTISEMENT -

Starting the smart living room conversion is quite easy. Install Harmony Hub anywhere that allows you to mount the IR sensor pointed at the TV. It doesn’t have to be close, but if you want to set up Harmony with your entertainment center, you can. Once it’s set up and connected to your network, you can add Harmony to Alexa like any other skill.

  1. Open your Amazon Alexa app on your smartphone.
  2. Tap the ‘ icon in the menu (three horizontal lines in the upper left corner).
  3. Tap on Skills and Games.
  4. Search for Harmony.
  5. Select the blue icon that appears.
  6. Enable the Harmony skill.
  7. Log in to Harmony from the Alexa app.

Once Alexa is connected to Harmony, you have the option to automatically turn the TV on and off. Almost everything else requires a little extra work. Harmony knows which channels are available with your provider, you can’t just request a specific channel out of the box unless your TV is plugged directly into the cable. If you are using an HD cable box that connects via HDMI or something similar to a TV, you need to create actions in Harmony in the Smart TV settings.

Volume control is also available through Alexa via multiple command types. You can simply ask to turn the volume up, or you can specify an increase or decrease between 1 and 20. Alexa currently doesn’t have the ability to switch inputs through Harmony without action, but you can set up an IFTTT trigger to allow this.