How To Control TV With Your Voice In 2018

June 14, 2018


Speaker 1: Hey everyone. Welcome to the channel. Have you ever been frustrated trying to find the TV remote? Well, in this video I’m going to show you how you can ditch the remote and just use your voice to control your TV. So let’s cut to the chase. First thing you’re going to need is a couple of Google products. The first being the Chromecast by Google. It’ll run you about probably 30 bucks. The second is the Home Mini, and that might be around 40 bucks. I’m sure there’s some Father Day deals going on right now, and you could probably get both of them for around 75 bucks or maybe even less. I’ve already connected those two devices. I’m sure you know how to connect cords to a device and to your outlets, so I’m not going to go through that. Once you connect both of the devices, you’ll get the screen that is showing now on your TV. Once the Home Mini is set up, you’ll get this message from the Google Home. Hey Google.

Google: Your Google Home isn’t set up yet. To get started, download the Google Home app on a phone or tablet.

Speaker 1: So that’s exactly what we’ll do right now. You can go to the Play Store, and I’m going to install the app from there. I’ll have all of the screenshots on my website, if you want to see each of the different screens that you have to go through, but it’s pretty simple. After the install, it’s just basically going to connect to your WiFi, so we’ll go ahead and open up. The thing about Google … they have the whole ecosystem from the smart speaker to the device to the actual live content, so that’s one of the big advantages I think Google has over some of the other competitors. Right here we want to go up to the hamburger, and it shows devices. So let’s see what devices were found. It says two devices, and it says, “Do you want to allow access to devices?” We’ll allow. Then it shows you the Google Home Mini, as well as the Chromecast, so we’re going to set up both of these.

We’ll start with the Chromecast. It says it found a particular Chromecast. Now it’s going to connect to that, and setup is really simple. Just have to follow the screens, and now it’s connected. Now, as you can see, it has a code, and it’s asking you if you see that code on your TV. We’ll say yes. Improve the Chromecast experience? We’ll skip for now. Where is the device? We’re in the den, so we’ll select den. Next. Then it already has the WiFi network that I’m on highlighted, so we can connect to that one. Now, I’ve connected before, so it has it saved. Sometimes it’ll ask you to manually input it, so you may want to have your WiFi password handy. But it does a good job of actually finding it for you if you’re already connected on your mobile phone. It’ll just connect that way. It won’t ask you to reenter it. So just that fast, it’s connected. It’s really just hitting the Next button. Stay in the know. We won’t do that because we’re just going through the setup. Says almost done. Continue. Den TV is ready. There you go, easy peasy.

We’ll skip the tutorials. At this point, I can cast from my TV, or from my mobile device to my TV, but we’re not here for that. What we’re here to do is to control the TV. So go back to devices, den TV. Let’s see. Whoops. I’m just going back into home. Okay, so it’s only has one device now, and that’s the Google Home, so we’ll set that one up. Basically, it’s the same process. It found it. Yes, I want to set it up. Now it’s connecting. I was talking about the Google ecosystem, and this is where you get that great user experience where you have … Okay, we got that beep, so we say yes, we heard it. Then it talks about improving. Say no thanks. Again, which room. We’re going to go with the den, and hit Next. Then again it’s going to ask for the network, and then it’ll search and connect to your WiFi. It shouldn’t ask for a password or anything.

Yeah, having all of the smart speaker, the device, and when you do YouTube TV they have the live TV content. It works seamlessly, and that’s why it’s, I think, has an advantage over its competitors. We don’t want to learn more. I said we don’t want to learn more, but I hit the button. Let’s go Next, Next. Teach assistant to recognize your voice. More. I agree. I had already set it up so that it recognized my voice. I don’t think I even needed to go through this, that part, but anyway. So now you have to enter your address. That’s so it knows where you’re at, so when it gives you weather and stuff like that it knows your location. So we’ll confirm the address is correct. I’m going to add some of these other content services, and we will skip that. Then it’s asking me for a payment, and we’ll say no. So we’ll continue. Hey, your den speaker is ready. Continue.

Google: Hi. I’m your Google Assistant. I’m here to help. To learn a few things you can do, continue in the Google Home app.

Speaker 1: Okay. So now, I mean, it’s eight minutes in, and we already have everything connected. So controlling your TV with your voice is one thing, but you also want to control your content and you want to control your live channels. The best way to do that … There’s two, or I guess three, major players. There’s probably more than that, but DIRECTV now has their content for live channels, as well as Sling and YouTube TV. Since YouTube TV is under Google, that’s where you get the extra benefit and features to control your live TV, so that’s what we’re going to also download while we’re at it. We’ll go … Get out of here, and go back to … Let’s actually go to YouTube TV. Now, I already have YouTube TV, so I’m just going to show you that it’s out there and how to download it and install it. But again, having those three, the devices and the content, under the same umbrella, under Google, it allows them to integrate all of their features seamlessly. Once I show you how to do everything by your voice, you’ll understand what I’m talking about.

So we’ll open, now … Like said, I already have YouTube TV, and it’s 40 bucks a month. If you still are paying a cable provider, I hope you’re negotiating your price, because you’re probably paying at least 50 or more dollars more than you have to. I actually just switched over my mom from DIRECTV to DIRECTV NOW. So she still has the same provider, but she’s paying $65 less. It was easy getting her content over the internet, as opposed to through the cable. Now, some other features you can see. You have six accounts. You have free DVR. Of course, you can start your trial membership for seven days, but I’m already a member. So it’s going to find me, and now it knows that I’m a member and starts … I can go to all of my live cable stuff and you can see live. I’m on ESPN right now. So I could cast this to my TV, but we’re not here for that. We’re actually here to control all of this from our voice and our Google Home, so let’s do a demo. Let’s start with, hey Google, play ESPN on den TV.

Google: Okay. Playing ESPN from YouTube TV on den TV.

Speaker 1: So there you go. This is the same content that you saw on my phone, and now it’s live on my TV.

Speaker 1: Hey Google, set volume to 50%. So it just lowered the volume to 50%. Now this is what I really love. In YouTube TV I don’t have to keep saying den TV or anything like that. I can just say, “Hey Google, play CNN.”

Google: Sure. Playing CNN from YouTube TV on den TV.

Speaker 1: So now it went to CNN, and of course, we have our local channels, as well. Hey Google, play NBC.

Google: Sure. Playing NBC from YouTube TV on den TV.

Speaker 1: Of course we’d be in all the commercials at this point. But trust me, these are your live TV. Let’s try something else. Hey Google, mute. So it just muted. Hey Google, show captions. So now that they started talking, it shows the captions while it’s on mute. You’re not going to be able to do this with, say, Sling TV or DIRECTV NOW, because they don’t have that end-to-end integration. They’re all different companies, and that’s why you have to, if you tried to do this … You can look on the internet. You can see other people have similar videos, but it’s all talking about connecting through the Harmony Hub or using IFTTT. All complicated stuff. You can see that this setup was easy. It took under 10 minutes, and look at the control that you have. I think it’s awesome, and definitely a reason to get YouTube TV over any of the other providers.

I also used Sling TV. My brother actually has it, and I’ve seen how it gets buggy sometimes. Like I said, I had switched my mom over to DIRECTV NOW, so I’ve been experiencing that as well. It’s better, probably, than Sling, but it’s also … There’s times where it’s been a little buggy. Of course, you’re not going to get the end-to-end integration that you will have with YouTube going through the Google Home, just because they have to work with either Harmony or these other providers to get that type of integration. So there you go, NBC. You can see that there. Hey Google, set volume to 50%. Hey Google, unmute. There you go. It set it, but it was still on mute. Hey Google, turn captions off. Captions went off. I think this is just so cool. Let’s see if we have some sports on ESPN. Hey Google, play ESPN.

Google: All right. Playing ESPN from YouTube TV on den TV.

Speaker 1: Course, commercial again. Hey Google, play golf.

Google: Sure. Playing golf from YouTube TV on den TV.

Speaker 1: Now, see, what I really like about that is I didn’t have to say the golf channel. I didn’t have to say the number of the channel, so it’s very intuitive. I’m not sure if the Phillies are playing right now. I’m in Philadelphia. But I’ve done it where I could say, “Play the Phillies,” and it would go to the channel that the Phillies are on. I’m not sure if the Phillies are on right now, so I’m not going to try it. Hey Google, turn off TV. There you go. I mean, that is just too cool. Hey Google, turn on den TV.

So, just some other tips I can give you. You probably want your Google Home closer to you than the TV. That can cause some issues. I’ve tried to use antennas in the past, and I haven’t had very much luck. I think they’re crappy. They don’t really do the job. I mean, you can get your free local channels if you want to, but I’d rather just go through one of the big three. Sling, YouTube TV, or DIRECTV NOW. The thing with DIRECTV NOW, and I think the reason why I haven’t seen many of these videos on YouTube, if any, is that because YouTube was kind of rolling out their service across the U.S., you probably only have like 80% coverage right now. It may even be close to 90. So I’m sure if you’re within a major city, within probably 30 miles, you’ll be able to get YouTube TV. But they’re taking their time so they make sure that they get it right and they have all the local channels that you would want.

But to have also, with YouTube TV you get unlimited DVR, which is great, so you can record shows and watch them whenever you want to. I mean, if you have cable TV right now and you’re paying more than 40 bucks for your channels, it’s actually ridiculous because, for one, just think, you’d have to get that installation set up and have that bulky equipment on your roof or have a cable box in your home. You don’t have to do that with [inaudible 00:18:44] now. I mean, you saw. The Chromecast is a small device, plugs into the back of your TV. I mean, what, it took me 10 minutes, 10 minutes to get what it would have taken several days. So it definitely is time to cut the cord, for sure, if you haven’t done so. I’m saving almost 50 bucks a month. Save money, have the mobility to watch TV on your phone or your laptop. Take it anywhere you want and still have access to the content. I mean, to me, it’s really a no-brainer.

It’ll be interesting to see, and I saw that Amazon just announced that they’re going to make their Fire TV kit Cube. I think it’s available June 21st, so it’ll be interesting to see how that competes. But again, because YouTube … or sorry, not YouTube. Because Amazon doesn’t really have that live TV content, they won’t have nearly this type of functionality and these features and it be that seamless. I doubt it, and I’ll be interested to see how that all pans out.

I wanted to keep this video under 20 minutes. As you can see, the setup was less than 10 minutes, so hopefully you found this of value. If you have any questions, please leave comments. I’ll try to respond to every comment that you have, and hope you will come back and watch more content. This is actually my first video, so it’ll be interesting to look back on this and see how much I’ve improved over the years. So again, thanks for watching. Peace of mind.