Standard remote controls are able to communicate with televisions using infrared light beams. In recent years, people have questioned whether they can also use their tablets and smart phones. It is now possible to do this, but it is important to understand that most tablets do not use infrared light to communicate. However, there are a few exceptions.
Using Apps As Remotes
Many tablets have the ability to utilize apps for controlling communications with televisions. Unless a person specifically buys a tablet that has the ability to transmit infrared light, an app must be installed. People who have not yet purchased a tablet but are hoping to use it as a remote should double-check with the manufacturer or sales representative to ensure the device will be able to do this.
How Do Apps Work?
Every app may be slightly different depending on the tablet it was designed to fit. For tablets that do not have the ability to transmit infrared light, apps work by using their internal WiFi radios. Many newer televisions are capable of being connected to a WiFi network, so these types of devices are usually compatible. Older ones that are not capable of this will not work with any type of app available today. When both the tablet and television are connected to the same WiFi network, signals can be sent to control the television as long as the tablet is within reasonable range.
What To Shop For
People who are still planning to buy tablets or televisions will certainly have plenty of issues to think about. However, if using a tablet to control the television is a top priority, it is important to do some research ahead of time to learn what types of smart devices will work with a tablet. Most cable providers can recommend a list of smart televisions that have WiFi capabilities. Another option is to purchase an adapter that will send infrared signals, but these may be difficult to find and set up in some cases.
Some cable providers sell tablets today. During certain times of the year, they may offer tablets as promotional gifts or for reduced prices, so check with a provider before buying a tablet at a retail store. Some may also sell televisions, so ask about these too. The benefit of renting or purchasing devices from cable companies is that they usually complete the setup for a low price or for free if a customer is new. There are usually promotional or introductory offers that are lower than the normal rates, and these last for a specific period of time. People who want to make the most of their viewing experiences by using tablets and smart televisions should always research the available options before deciding what to do or before making a purchase.