Technical instructions: Use your voice to control your TV

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I have a rule: If an email should take me longer than a minute to write, I take the phone instead.

For many things, using our voices is faster and easier. This also applies to controlling your phone. Press or click for ingenious commands to try with Siri or Google Assistant.

When writing or taking notes, dictating can be a lot easier than writing it all down. Tap or click for useful tips for better dictation in Microsoft Word or Google Docs.

The same time-saving principles can be applied to your TV. You can talk to search for movies, control the volume, pause, rewind, skip to the next episode, and more.

Brand TV

Some Amazon, Toshiba and Insignia TVs come with Fire TV built-in. With Fire TV Alexa Voice Remote you can browse apps, movies and shows, check the weather and sports scores, launch content and more with your voice.

It’s as easy as pressing a button:

  • Hold down Voice key on your remote control and ask Alexa what you want (you do not have to say “Alexa”), then release the button.
  • You can search for a movie genre, actor, channel, pause, skip forward, lower the volume and more.
  • Try these commands: Pause, play, resume, show me movies with Tom Hardy, return home, go to Prime Video, mute, switch to PlayStation.

If you have a Fire TV Stick, it probably came with one Alexa voice remote control. You can also buy the remote separately if you need one.

RELATED: 5 things you did not know your smart TV could

Year

Brands like TCL, Sharp, RCA and Sanyo manufacture TVs with Roku TV built-in. Some come with a voice remote control that you can purchase separately if you do not have one. Tap or click here to grab one for around $ 20.

All you have to do is press a button and talk:

  • Press and hold Microphone buttonsay your request, then release the button.
  • Try searching for specific movies or TV shows. You can also try a category or genre. Open streaming apps, pause and rewind content, and browse music.
  • Or use one of these commands: Search for movies with John Travolta, show me episodes of “The Queen’s Gambit”, find horror movies, launch Disney +, and hide captions.

Worried about privacy? Yes, your smart TV is spying on you. How to stop it.

File photo: A video sign shows the logo of Roku Inc, a Fox-backed video streaming company, in Times Square following the company's listing on Nasdaq Market in New York, USA, September 28, 2017. (REUTERS / Brendan McDermid)

File photo: A video sign shows the logo of Roku Inc, a Fox-backed video streaming company, in Times Square following the company’s listing on Nasdaq Market in New York, USA, September 28, 2017. (REUTERS / Brendan McDermid)

Chromecast

Google’s Chromecast dongle turns any TV into a smart one, complete with streaming features and voice control. The latest model comes with a Chromecast Voice Remote. If you have an older model, you may have a hard time finding the remote that can be purchased alone.

You do not even have to say “Hey Google” to control your Chromecast with your voice:

  • Press and hold Google Assistant button to open the microphone.
  • Ask a question or say a command. Try these: Open Netflix, play “Iron Man”, go back 10 seconds and the next episode.

Maintenance helps your technology last much longer. Are you making this big mistake that will kill your TV sooner?

Vizio

Vizio’s smart remote control comes with sets produced in the last few years. You can also buy directly from Vizio or pick one up compatible option for around $ 15 on Amazon.

The remote allows you to browse content, change input, change volume, launch apps, check the weather and more.

  • Press and hold microphone button and say your command.
  • Try these commands: Show me family movies, show me animated movies, switch to HDMI 2, pause, set the volume to 5, play “Modern Family” on Peacock, and open YouTube.
Movie stream service on smart TV.

Movie stream service on smart TV.
(iStock)

Samsung

You can control your Samsung TV using Bixby, Alexa or Google Assistant, depending on the model year.

To set up Bixby with your Samsung TV:

  • Go to Settings > General on your TV, then select Vote.
  • choose Voice assistant and select Bixbyand then select Okay.
  • Use Bixby Voice Settings to select your language, voice response and audio feedback.
  • Then press microphone button on your TV’s remote control and say “Hello, Bixby” to start giving commands.

You need an Amazon account to set up Alexa with your Samsung TV:

  • Go to Settings > General on your TV, then select Vote.
  • choose Voice assistant and select Alexaand then select Okay.
  • Scan the on-screen QR code using your phone’s camera.
  • You will be taken to Amazon’s website. Log in to your Amazon account and tap Allow on your phone.
  • Follow the instructions on the TV screen to complete the setup of Alexa.
  • Press your remote control microphone button and say “Alexa” to start giving commands.

You need a Google Account to set up Google Assistant with your Samsung TV:

  • Go to Settings > General on your TV, then select Vote.
  • choose Voice assistant and select Google Assistantand then select Okay.
  • choose “I understand” to accept the terms and conditions.
  • Use your phone to navigate to the website that appears on your TV screen.
  • Press Get startedthen Open to open Google Assistant on your phone.
  • Log in to your account, then tap Continue.
  • Press Next when your phone finds your TV.
  • Press Yes to confirm that the code on your TV matches the code on your phone.
  • Press Allow on your phone to give your TV permission to access your phone.
  • Press the remote control microphone button and tell your requests.

Bonus tip: How advertisers collect your data and target you with ads

YouTube TV logo

YouTube TV logo
(AP Photo / Reed Saxon, File)

Husband, 38, married, two children under five, watched a YouTube video on lawn care, visited a home business within the last 10 days, listened to a podcast on lawns, earns $ 68,000 a year in a leadership position and lives in a particular Zip code. This is how specific advertising can be today. In this episode, I sit down with advertising CTO Premesh Purayil from Freestar to learn how it works and how to opt out of data tracking.

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