Remotes & Accessories

Help with Roku remotes and accessories, including pairing a remote, setting up TV power & volume control, using voice commands, power adapters, cables, headphones, and wireless speaker accessories.
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MrMustard777
Level 8

How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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Dear Community, we are debating replacing our older Roku with a new one, we love Roku!  However it looks like they now feature voice activated remotes.  I'm sure this is a selling point for some but I have privacy concerns.  Does anybody know if this thing is listening the way your typical smart speaker does (meaning that recordings of your voice are uploaded through the internet to a company's servers)?  Or does it just control the Roku device locally and what you say is not sent up to the mothership and kept forever?  I have just updated my voice preferences to "off" under settings here on the Roku site so I think it gets sent up via the internet but just checking.  Also how easily can voice activation be turned off and does it stay off? 

To each their own but I personally think the phones are effective enough at reducing our privacy to almost zero.  Why bring another listening device into your living room or bedroom? Is it really that hard to operate a remote?  Thanks, -Matt

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Tivoburkee
Community Streaming Expert

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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Roku does not have a voice active remote, they have remote with voice search key, you have to press and speak to enable it. 

Edmund
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Tivoburkee
Community Streaming Expert

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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Roku does not have a voice active remote, they have remote with voice search key, you have to press and speak to enable it. 

Edmund
Roku Community Streaming Expert

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atc98092
Community Streaming Expert

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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And not all Roku players come with the voice remote. My Premiere only came with an IR remote, which doesn't have voice capability. Every Roku other than the Sticks support an IR remote, so even if you buy one with a voice remote, you can buy an IR remote, take the batteries out of the voice remote, and have no concerns. 

Dan

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MrMustard777
Level 8

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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Ok thanks to you both. 

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Help58
Level 7

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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The voice button on my remote is continually speaking with I do anything on the home screen. How do I get it to shut up!!! Thank you

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renojim
Community Streaming Expert

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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I'm guessing it has nothing to do with the voice button and you've activated the Audio Guide.  Press * on your remote four times or look for the Accessibility setting to disable it.

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Ruins
Level 8

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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I don't find these answers satisfactory. The man asked a question and it wasn't answered by anyone. Where are the experts chiming in to answer? Or is this one of those, we aren't going to answer it because the party line is to ignore these types of questions?

Where's a Roku rep when you need one?

I would like to see an answer to this question. I have the same concerns. Privacy is a critical issue these days. People give away their information without thinking about it and yet someone dares to ask and is ignored or given short shrift. That's not helpful to anyone. You 'experts' are falling down on your job and by job, I include whether you get paid or not. If you volunteer to do something, you still have a duty to do it right.

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atc98092
Community Streaming Expert

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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@Ruins this is a community forum, not tech support. The only Roku staff here are moderators, not tech help.

In my experience the voice remote mic is off unless you press the button. It's not like my Alexa device that is listening constantly. 

Dan

Roku Community Streaming Expert

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renojim
Community Streaming Expert

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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The Voice Remote Pro has a hands-free option, but it can be disabled via a button on the side.  I don't think the non-Pro version has a hand-free option - it only listens when you press the button.  Like Amazon devices (and I assume Google devices) it's not really listening all the time.  It only has enough smarts to recognize "Hey Roku" and then it sends the rest of what you say over the Internet for voice recognition.  I recognize the privacy concerns, but it's really nothing to be concerned about.

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Ruins
Level 8

Re: How invasive is the voice remote, and can it be turned off?

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So Roku staff doesn't respond but you all call yourself 'experts'. If that's something for how many times you post then it's misleading. Either you *are* an expert or you aren't. That's not meant to be inflammatory but it is meant to be judgemental.

Privacy and security concerns are real and nothing to be laughed at. Nor dismissed because *you* don't care. *I* care and so did the OP. There are other people that will never post but will quietly read and not get answers and, perhaps, never buy a Roku. I don't know.

I just think that if you don't have an informed, reasoned answer then you shouldn't be answering the question in a way that is meant to be a final answer. Couch it in 'this is my opinion' or 'I think such and such but I'm not all that concerned....' or whatever but don't just throw stuff out there just to throw stuff out there. (That 'you' wasn't directed at you but to the community at large. I do the same thing in my line of work. I never pretend to know all the answers. Nobody can and (just about) nobody does. That level of genius is rare and I've been privileged to work with a few.)

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