How to Make Your NVIDIA SHIELD or Controller Blink When it Hears “OK Google”

NVIDIA’s SHIELD is the first Android TV box to get the Google Assistant, and you can already do some cool thing with it—like use it with the TV turned off. If you’d like a visual notification that it heard you, though, there’s a hidden tweak for that, too.

There’s actually a pair of toggles found in the Developer Settings menu that will force the controller or SHIELD itself to blink when it detects the words “OK Google”, making it a lot easier to use when you’re away from the TV…assuming you have the controller nearby, of course.

Before you can enable said tweak, however, you first need to enable Developer Options on your SHIELD. The process is exactly like it is on Android phones and tablets, but here’s the quick and dirty: jump into Settings, then scroll down to About. In this menu, find the “Build” entry, then click on it seven times. Toast notifications will let you know how many more clicks you need, and on the last one it will let you know that “you’re a developer.” Done.

With that out of the way, jump back one menu, then scroll down to the newly-added Developer Options entry. Open it.

There’s a lot going on in this menu—lots of stuff you probably need not concern yourself with right now—so scroll all the way to the very bottom. Here you’ll find two options: “Blink controller LED on hotword detection” and “Pulse SHIELD LED on first pass hotword detection.”

Enable either one (or both!) with the toggle, and away you go. Now every time your SHIELD detects the hotword, it will give you a visual notification not only on the TV, but also controller and box itself if you choose. Neat.

Note: Since these toggles are found in the Developer Settings menu, there’s a chance they could be removed with any update, since they’re not technically meant for everyday use—just testing purposes. You’ve been warned.

Cameron Summerson is a die-hard Android fan, Chicago Bulls fanatic, metalhead, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at HTG, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, spinning legs on the bike, chugging away on the 6-string, or being disappointed in the Bulls.