How does a television remote work?


Television remotes usually communicate with the TV through Infra-Red (IR) signals transmitted from the front of the remote unit. The pulses of light emitted by the remote aren’t at a wavelength that the human eye can see, however it can sometimes be possible to observe them using the camera on your phone.

The detector requires a small amount of power to be sent to it even when the TV is “off”, which is how you can turn your TV “on” when it is on standby mode.

Modern phones can communicate with your TV over a bluetooth or wireless network, and therefore it should be possible to create an app which can wake your computer up from standby mode just as they do with TV units.