10 Amazing Android TV Tricks You Definitely Didn’t Know About

Mark my words: during the next few years, Android TV will conquer the globe by storm. While devices like the Roku and Apple TV are quite helpful and have a lot of great capabilities, they are still considered niche products by the majority of people.

All of that will change with Android TV. When compared to competitors such as Amazon Fire TV, Android TV is poised to accomplish for smart televisions what the mobile version of Android did for smartphones.

We want to help you get the most out of your Android TV, whether you’re an early adopter or considering about buying one for the first time. Here are Ten incredible Android TV techniques you may not be aware of.

1. You Can Sideload Apps

The procedure for sideloading apps on an Android phone is extensively documented. In a nutshell, it lets you to run programs that aren’t available on Google Play.

You Can Sideload Apps
You Can Sideload Apps

You may sideload apps on Android TV as well. Any APK file may be sideloaded and installed in a couple of seconds. This means you’ll be able to access geo-restricted material and apps that Google doesn’t allow on the Play Store.

You’ll need to install a file manager before you can sideload an APK. By default, Android TV does not have one. TVExplorer, a file manager created specifically for TVs rather than phones and tablets, is one of the finest. It’s available on the Google Play Store.

You should additionally get TV App Repo or Sideload Launcher. You may use these two applications to start sideloaded apps without having to go into the Settings menu (Sideload Launcher places all the sideloaded apps in a container, TV App Repo lets you make shortcuts for your sideloaded content in your Leanback ribbon).

2. Add remote control for your games

Android TV also features a modest selection of games that have been converted. They normally let you play using the remote control of the device on which they’re installed, although this isn’t necessarily the greatest or most comfortable method to play. As a result, Android TV also allows you to use a Bluetooth remote.

Add remote control for your games
Add remote control for your games

All you have to do is go to Settings and select Add Device from the drop-down menu. A remote control and accessories for devices like the Mi Box are available. You may use the remote to play as well as navigate through the options. It’s worth noting that both the PS4 and the most recent models of the XBox One controller may connect to the console through Bluetooth.

3. You can also use keyboard or mouse

You can also use keyboard or mouse
You can also use keyboard or mouse

You’ll be able to sync a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse at the same time. You must also go to the Settings menu and choose the option to sync devices to do this. Remember that the mouse and keyboard must both have Bluetooth and be in sync mode to complete the operation. This can help you text faster while using your Android TV to search or surf the Internet, for example.

4. Change the screen saver

When your television is turned off, your Android TV, like your PC, has a screen saver option. You may choose between gradient backgrounds or the Chromecast background, which includes landscapes and nature themes.

Open Settings >> Screen saver >> Backdrop to select your screen saver and change the amount of time your TV should wait before it begins the function.

Open the Google Home app on your Android or iOS device and pick your Android TV to change your screen saver. Select one of the following options under Settings >> Ambient mode:

  • Google Photos – Albums from your Google Photos account.
  • Art gallery – Images and artwork curated by Google.
  • Experimental – Images from new sources and try new features.

5. You Can Run Android Apps in the Play Store

If you’re new to Android TV and open the Play Store for the first time, you might be frustrated to see that you don’t have the same selection of Android applications as you have on your phone.

You Can Run Android Apps in the Play Store
You Can Run Android Apps in the Play Store

This is due to the fact that Android TV demands a unique approach to app development. Google won’t list an app in the Play Store on the TV if it hasn’t been modified for the device.

The phrase “on the television” is the most important portion of that statement. Why? Because you can use your PC to access the Play Store and download most Android apps to your TV from there.

To make things even simpler, just download Chrome from your computer to your TV, then surf the online version of the Play Store using the freshly installed browser.

6. Voice Search

A universal voice search function is available on Android TV. In practice, what does this mean? When you’re on the home screen, hit the voice search button on your remote control, and it’ll search all of the (voice-supported) applications on your device, as well as Chrome (if you’ve installed it).

Voice Search
Voice Search

Of course, if you want to limit your results, you can enable the search tool from within particular applications, but in most circumstances, global search is the best option.

7. Your Android TV Is a Chromecast

Did you know that your Android TV may also be used as a Chromecast? It’s not some creative workaround that allows you stream content from your laptop; your set-top box really has a Chromecast built-in.

It operates on its own. Nothing on your television has to be turned on. However, many individuals are unaware that it exists.

Your Android TV Is a Chromecast
Your Android TV Is a Chromecast

Swipe down on the notification bar and hit Cast to cast content from your Android phone. All of your casting devices will be listed on your phone.

Chrome must be installed on your laptop in order to cast content. Select Cast… from the three vertical dots in the top right-hand corner. You’ll see a list of supported devices once more. Toggle between casting your browser tab or the full desktop by clicking the down arrow next to Cast.

8. Use Your Xbox or PS4 Controller

A gaming controller is included with some Android TV devices, such as the Nvidia Shield. Others, however, do not. You’ll need a controller if you want to use Android TV to play games on your television.

Of course, you can purchase inexpensive Bluetooth controllers on Amazon, but if you already own an Xbox or PlayStation 4, you can use your existing controllers with your Android box. They function flawlessly.

Use Your Xbox or PS4 Controller
Use Your Xbox or PS4 Controller

On your Android TV, go to Settings > Add Accessory to link your controllers. It will look for Bluetooth devices in the vicinity. When it discovers your controller, use your Android TV remote to click on its name.

If you’re having trouble, make sure your controller supports Bluetooth and has the most recent firmware.

9. Send images and files to any device

Moving any form of local file to your computer is one of the most challenging aspects of this gadget. The simplest option is to use a file explorer to transfer these photographs and files to a USB drive and then to the computer, however these tools occasionally fail or are unable to copy many files at once, as was the case with the screenshots in this post.

Send images and files to any device
Send images and files to any device

The cloud is the answer. If you install the ES File Explorer software, you’ll see a Cloud area in the left column where you can set up your Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, or Dropbox account. Even yet, because ES File Explorer has recently deteriorated, you may be interested in other options such as MiXplorer or the Xiaomi file manager.

10. Take a screenshot

Take a screenshot
Take a screenshot

Yes, you can capture screenshots with Android TV, and it’s just as simple as capturing them on your phone. The process varies each device, but you generally just need to press two buttons at once, such as the power button and the volume control on the remote control. A capture animation will appear, and it will be stored to the folder /sdcard/Pictures/Screenshots/.

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