Sky has just added a new voice search tool to its excellent Sky Q service, allowing us to find shows, movies and more with a quick command. Here’s everything you need to know about the new Sky Q voice search feature, including when your box will be updated and how to use it.
What is the new voice search feature on Sky Q?
At the moment if you’re trying to find a specific show or movie on your Sky Q box, or simply conduct a more general search for fresh content, you have to use the rather clunky on-screen keyboard. This involves scrolling up and down through a long list of characters, which is gut-clenchingly tedious at the best of times.
Thankfully Sky has just announced a voice search function which will allow Sky Q customers to bypass this laborious process. Rather than tapping through that on-screen list, you can just speak into your remote to request whatever you like.
Voice search is coming in the next Sky Q update, so should hit your box soon (scroll down for more info on when to expect the update).
What can I use voice search on Sky Q for?
You can search for any of the following across live and on-demand TV using Sky Q’s new voice feature:
- The name of a movie or TV show
- The works of any actor or director (e.g. ‘Ben Wheatley’)
- A particular movie or TV genre (e.g. ‘drama shows’, ‘comedy movies’)
- You can also combine the above with a specific age rating or star rating (e.g. ‘Ben Wheatley movies rated U’, ‘action movies rated five stars’)
- TV channels (e.g. ‘what’s on Sky One tonight?’)
- Sports teams, or sporting events (e.g. ‘Live cricket on this weekend’, ‘Sunderland game’)
Read next: Common Sky Q problems and how to fix them
How do I activate the new voice search feature?
To use the voice search feature, all you need to do is press and hold the voice button on the side of the Sky Q remote control. When your TV prompts you, speak clearly into the remote’s microphone, which is located just below the Sky button. Your results should pop up almost instantly.
Read next: Sky Q tips, tricks and best hidden features
I’ve heard there’s a hidden movie quotes feature in the new Sky Q voice search?
If you search for a specific quote, such as “say hello to my little friend” or “I’ll have what she’s having”, you might be pleasantly surprised. These need to be word perfect, however.
Check out Sky’s video of this feature in action below.
What other updates to Sky Q are being rolled out alongside the voice search feature?
As well as Voice Search, the first big Sky Q update of 2017 adds two other new features.
First, the Sky Q desktop has been redesigned. The My Q section is now the Sky Q homepage, rather than the Sky Recommends section. My Q will now feature direct recommendations based on your viewing habits and Sky’s big releases, while the Continue Watching section will allow you to immediately pick up where your last viewing session finished. Recordings and the TV Guide will now only be a swipe away too.
The update also allows you to watch Facebook videos with the existing My Photos app. Just sign into your Facebook profile in the app and away you go.
Of course, there are plenty more Sky Q updates coming later in 2017, adding some great new features such as the ability to watch sports events from the beginning if you come in halfway through. Check out our complete guide to Sky Q 2017 updates to learn more.
How do I update my Sky Q box to get the voice search feature?
The voice search tool will roll out to all Sky Q customers in an impending update. Your Sky Q box should automatically alert you when this update is available, adding the feature without disrupting anything.
However, be aware that this update is rolling out to existing Sky Q customers in batches. Some will get it almost immediately while others will have to wait a little longer. This is just to ensure the update doesn’t screw up an entire nation’s service in one go.
Sky has reassured us that all customers should be updated and able to use voice search by the end of Spring – so in the next month or so.