For years now, there exists an Android TV Remote Control app that should have been able to let your smartphone function as a remote for your smart TV. Unfortunately, Google has not updated that for years so it’s become practically useless. The good news now is that you might soon get the same functionality on your Google TV app for Android phones if the strings are to be believed and when an update rolls out. Until then though, you’ll have to make to do with an actual remote.
9 to 5 Google shares that in the latest update to the Google TV app for Android phones, formerly known as Play Movies & TV, there are strings indicating a universal remote feature coming to it soon. There are strings indicating a directional pad, enter and back buttons, and a system to pair your smartphone to your Android TV. And while they were able to pair it, there doesn’t seem to be any devices in there right now.
This indicates that this feature may still be in early development so nothing can be tested just yet even if you are able to enable the pairing. From what they’re seeing though, the Google TV app will be connected to the TV either through Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. But unlike the Android TV Remote Control app, you won’t need a standalone app anymore and just use the Google TV app which you’re probably already using anyway.
While a lot of TVs come with remotes, they’re not always that convenient especially when there is a need to type out things. Having an app turn your smartphone as a remote will be much easier to navigate, hopefully. And hopefully, things will be much better as the Android TV Remote Control app wasn’t a walk in the park either. Android TVs have made a lot of advances since its last update which was 2017.
But since this feature for the Google TV app seems to still be in early development, don’t expect it to roll out anytime soon. For now, just update your app to version 4.25.