How to use your smartphone camera to test the batteries in your remote
Is your remote control defective? Or is it just the batteries are dead? Your smartphone can help you answer these questions.
We have all been there. You lazily surf the channels while lying on the couch. Then all of a sudden the remote starts to abort. You start noticing slow response times and sometimes the remote may even stop working. Out of frustration, you push the handles harder, lift the remote harder, or maybe even bite into the batteries (I tried this one).
At this point, you can’t help but wonder if there’s something wrong with the remote, the TV, or the batteries. But there’s a powerful, but lesser-known trick you can use to determine if your remote is running out of power. And this trick is hidden in the camera of your smartphone. Here’s how to do it.
Test your remote’s batteries with your smartphone
Testing your remote’s batteries with your smartphone is an understandable task and should only take a minute or two of your time. Here’s how to do it.
1. Throw away your smartphone and launch your camera app. Then press to switch to the selfie camera (previous part). Now point your remote at the old camera. Then press and hold a bud, any bud on the remote while pointing it at the camera.
If your remote is working properly, you should see a blinking light coming from the remote’s IR emitter. If you don’t see a blinking light or if the light is very dim, it means you probably need to replace the batteries in your remote. And if even after replacing the batteries with new ones you don’t get the flickering light, then your remote is the problem, in which case you may want to consider replacing it.
This trick doesn’t just work with smartphone cameras. It can also work with any other digital camera. So if all you have is a laptop, try using the built-in webcam, and it should work.
NoticeNote: Not all smartphone cameras will work. Some camera apps have built-in technologies that can prevent this trick from working. Therefore, before concluding that your remote control is faulty, it is advisable to try using another smartphone’s camera to see if you get the same result.
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why it works
A standard remote control usually sends signals to your home theater or television using a beam of infrared light. This exhalation is picked up by a sensor in your TV or home theater. The problem with infrared light is that, like ultraviolet light, it falls outside the spectrum of colors visible to the naked eye.
Once the remote sends infrared pulses to the TV sensor, the sensor interprets telling your TV which channel to tune to.
A smartphone camera has a magnifying glass that acts more or less like the sensor on a television when an infrared beam is projected around it. Unlike the human eye that cannot see these rays, your smartphone camera can easily detect these infrared rays, and that is why a flashing light appears on the smartphone camera.
to sum up
Smartphones have come a long way to become the most versatile devices on the market today. They can perform multiple tasks, some of which are less well known, such as the ability to test the functionality of a remote control formation. Also check out our article on 10 ways to make good use of your smartphone camera.
Now that you know it’s possible to test your remote control training with a simple smartphone, why not try it at home? Be sure to share your experiences with us in the comments section below.