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How do you find a lost Apple TV remote?

As an owner of an Apple TV, I know the frustration of losing the remote. I recently went through this experience myself and spent days searching for it. After doing some research and testing, I was able to find the remote and I’m here to share how I solved the problem and other solutions I discovered. In this blog post, I’ll explain how to find a lost Apple TV remote.

Quick Tips: Apple TV Remote
Apple TV remotes have no built-in tracking functionality.
Use the iPhone as a remote instead.
Consider getting a tracker like a Tile Sticker or AirTag.
Attach the remote to a larger object that is harder to lose.
Use the Apple TV Remote application on a mobile device to replace the lost remote.

How do you find a lost Apple TV remote?

Apple TV remotes have no built-in tracking functionality. Unless you went through the trouble of getting a pricier tracker like a Tile Sticker or AirTag, a lost remote needs to be located the old-fashioned way.

A basic Apple TV remote costs less than many trackers, so it’s only something to consider if your household is chronically misplacing remotes.

When you move up to remotes like the R5 with Siri, paying a bit extra for an AirTag makes more sense. It ups the price by about half, but even one successful rescue will make up for the cost.

A good tracker should get you to within a few feet, but signal interference may increase that distance.

Read more: How to turn on Apple TV autoplay

How do you prevent the loss of an Apple TV remote?

It can also help to physically attach your remote to a larger object that is harder to lose inside the couch cushions.

A large piece of cardboard with a hefty helping of bright decoration will be easy to see and fairly lightweight, so it helps the remote stay visible without weighing it down.

Sprucing up a public use remote this way while getting a second remote for personal use costs about the same as getting a tracker, and you get a family project out of it.

For an extreme fix, you could try to lock the remote in a specific location. Just superglueing or screwing it into place isn’t a viable way to do this.

You’ll need to make sure not to stop the battery housing from opening, and you don’t want to damage the remote.

One great DIY solution we’ve seen is to attach a small D-ring to the remote and run a chain to the dining room table.

It’s not going to stop anyone dedicated to moving the remote, but it’ll help people remember to leave it in place.

Read more: How many years will AirPods last?

What do you do when you lose your Apple TV remote?

If you can’t find the remote, don’t place an order for a new one just yet.

Using the Apple TV Remote application on a mobile device is the most convenient way to replace it, and it’s effectively free if you already have the device. 

The app is installed by default on new iOS and iPadOS builds, and older versions can add it to the control center with a simple button press inside the menu.

Since nearly every Apple device can talk to Siri anyway, you don’t lose any functionality compared to pricier Apple TV remotes.

The options for Android devices are frequently questionable, and many are cash grabs looking for desperate Apple TV owners.

Be wary of downloading any, especially ones that ask for payment. Universal remote apps tend to be more reliable, but price and functionality when paired with an Apple TV will still vary.

As long as your Apple TV and mobile device are on the same network, set up should only take a minute or so.

Open up the control center, select the remote app, and find the TV in the list. You’ll see a short four-digit code on the TV that will pair the app with it. That’s it!

Can an Apple TV remote connect to find my iPhone?

While an Apple TV remote can’t directly help you find your iPhone, a remote with Siri like the R5 can be your connection to Siri’s helpful services.

It’s not something you can do once it’s lost, but enabling the Find My service with precise locations lets her pinpoint the device based on its latest connection.

If you add an AirTag to your R5, the Find My app will also be where you look for its location. Make sure to toggle the option to send out the location when the phone detects a low battery.

Ask Siri to help find your lost iPhone, and she can see if it’s nearby or send a notification sound through its speakers.

This does require that there’s some battery left in your phone, which is not always a guarantee if you’re the type of person who loses their phone a lot.