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How To Use A Frestick Without Remote? 4 Easy Methods!

The Fire TV Stick is an incredibly handy device. In the streaming-stick world, the other competitors can’t compete with the backend of Amazon, which allows all the apps you want as well as direct access to Amazon’s streaming video library. The Fire TV Stick even comes with a handy remote, although you don’t technically need it to control the device.

Methods for Controlling a Fire TV Stick without a Remote Control:

  1. Use the Amazon Fire TV App
  2. Enable HDMI CEC and Use the TV’s Remote
  3. Use a Compatible Universal Remote Control
  4. Use Voice Control from an Amazon Echo Device

Maybe you lost the remote for your Fire TV in a move or, more likely, your dog discovered just how satisfying that soft-touch coating is to destroy. We’ll discuss replacement remote options, but it may be easier to use one of these other solutions to control the Fire TV Stick first. Let’s get started!

Alternative Ways To Control Amazon Fire TV Stick

If you’re wondering how to use a Firestick without a remote, there are a few alternative methods available – whether you’re turning it on, connecting to Wi-Fi, or handling other tasks. The methods below offer practical solutions to make your Firestick work smoothly.

If you’re facing challenges and none of the above methods work, you can resort to a factory reset. It’s important to note that this is a last resort option and you should avoid it if you can since it will erase all data.

Without a remote, use a paperclip to press and hold the reset button on the Firestick. After the reset, set up your Firestick again with a new remote or use the Fire TV Remote App for convenient control.

Amazon Fire TV App for IOS or Android

The Amazon Fire TV app serves as a convenient and one of the simplest alternatives to your remote. You can install it on your iPhone or Android smartphone.

It’s a very simple, free mobile app that gives you all the buttons you’ll need to manage video content, adjust the Fire TV settings, and even use the phone’s microphone to ask Alexa questions, tell it to search for shows for you, or connect it to your soundbar (our guide) for better audio or work through a stuck home screen.

Control your Amazon Fire TV Stick effortlessly with your phone’s app by simply swiping (more on this in our other tutorial). No need for a replacement remote. Beyond basic remote functions, the app allows you to handle recordings and, in certain instances with access to live channels, view real-time content directly from the app.

Keep in mind that the remote operates via Wi-Fi, so make sure you connect your phone to the same network as the Fire TV Stick. However, it’s important to note that the app cannot function as a remote for gaming, which is a drawback.

Alas, if you want to play games on your Fire TV Stick, you’ll have to get a dedicated video game remote controller for it. The good news here is that most modern controllers are compatible, from Xbox Wireless Controller (on Amazon) for example, to a bit more expensive EasySMX Wireless Gaming Controller (also on Amazon).

In fact, typing on your smartphone is often quicker than traditional TV text input methods. The Fire TV App is especially useful for extensive text input, even if you have the original remote. When setting up a new Firestick, use the app to streamline the process of entering usernames and passwords for your favorite apps.

Use Your TV’s Remote Control with HDMI CEC Enabled

Remote control and screen - binge watching the favourite TV show

Did you know that you can control your Fire TV Stick with the remote control that came with your TV? Luckily there’s a modern HDMI standard that aims to add this functionality into the HDMI system. It seems too good to be true, but if you have the right hardware this method can “just work” in a really impressive way.

We have a separate article on what CEC means in the world of HDMI. Still, the long and short of it is that CEC, or Consumer Electronics Control, is a standard that allows one of the pins on the HDMI cable to be used to transmit controls or user inputs up and down the HDMI cable.

If your TV supports CEC and the HDMI cable is compatible, connecting the Fire TV Stick to a CEC-capable device like a Receiver or Soundbar enables a continuous chain of control.

Simply connect the Fire TV Stick to the back of the CEC-enabled device, and your remote should work when you switch to the respective HDMI input. We also have a guide on extending a HDMI cable, if you need to.

Not all the buttons will do what you expect, but the simple inputs like navigation errors, select, and back should all be able to allow you to navigate the system simply. Be sure to reference the above-linked article – CEC can go by several different names, and the most modern iteration is referred to as ARC or eARC, so look for HDMI ARC and HDMI eARC capable soundbars and receivers.

Use a Compatible Universal Remote Control

There’s also the classic route of getting a universal control. This is a great option because you won’t have to figure out any HDMI standards like the above-discussed CEC or otherwise be beholden to HDMI tricks to get the one-remote effect. Universal remotes for Fire TV are the original brute-force option of synchronizing all your devices to one remote, but how do you know if a given remote works with the Fire TV Stick?

The good news here is that compatibility will be listed in the product description, making it easy to find a suitable option. There are some go-to options like the SofaBaton X1 (on Amazon), which will not only work with your Fire TV but is also expandable to your other home audio/video devices. TVs, receivers, soundbars–the works. Additionally, it comes with a handy pairing app for remote control functionality on your smartphone.

There are more classic universal remote options which, unlike the Harmony where a hub is required, exist just as controllers. The Inteset 4-in-1 Universal Backlit IR Learning Remote (also on Amazon) is a great example. It can control your Fire TV Stick, but since it’s a more traditional controller it’s going to use an IR blaster to send its commands.

The Fire TV Stick doesn’t have an IR receiver built-in, but you can get an adapter that allows you to add this functionality, making this particular remote play nicely with the Fire Stick.

Use an Amazon Echo or Echo Dot (Alexa)

Voice controlled speaker with activated voice recognition on light background

Then, of course, there’s the more obvious option of using Amazon’s other paired devices to control your Fire TV Stick, but a regular TV remote will work just as well as we’ve explained before! Since all of these devices link to your Amazon account and have the Alexa voice assistant built-in, you can simply plug in an Amazon Echo or Echo Dot (Amazon links) and dictate your commands like some kind of cybernetic god.

But seriously…these are incredibly useful devices in and over themselves, so it makes sense that controlling your Fire TV stick is another trick added to the Echo line’s repertoire. This is probably the best solution if you’re already embedded in the Amazon ecosystem. But if the experience of having to shout to change the channel gets old, any of the above classic remote control options should help. 

What About The Roku Remote?

Though you can use Roku and Firestick on the same device, you won’t be able to use Roku’s remote to control Firestick.

If you’re here because your original Amazon Firestick remote is on the fritz, be sure to consider a replacement Firestick remote (on Amazon) as an option. And if your existing Firestick remote simply isn’t working but you think it’s not broken, check out our guide on how to reset the Firestick remote.

Using the Sideclick to Add Extra Functions to the Fire TV Remote

If you’re reading this article, you’re probably here because you want to know how to control your device without the Fire TV Stick remote at all – but this discussion around remotes and the Fire TV wouldn’t be complete without a quick mention of the Sideclick Universal Remote Attachment (on Amazon). This clever device clicks on your Amazon Fire TV Remote and adds more buttons and more functionality.

It’s worth knowing about because if you read this article and then choose to purchase a replacement Amazon TV remote, you might want to add the Sideclick for the added functionality. It’s designed to control your TV or Receiver, really any IR-based home theater equipment, in the same way, that a universal remote is.

It has an IR blaster and is super simple to set up and train with the existing remotes. So as you plan your next step in how to control your Fire TV Stick, be sure to quickly peruse Sideclick’s product page to see if it’s something you’d like.

Oh, and if you’re here dealing with a remote issue on an Insignia Fire TV specifically, have a look at our dedicated article on that next.