The screensaver for Android TVs, Amazon Fire TV Sticks, and Google Chromecasts with Android TV can be set to slideshow your Google Photos, Microsoft OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox or Flickr photos by using one of my apps and changing the device screensaver using an adb command.
Since you’re reading this, you probably already know my apps provide a much better slideshow than the device screensaver. Not only will they slideshow both photos and videos, they have a ton of settings, allowing you to choose different animations, display times, and they’ll automatically update so your slideshow stays current.
When the app is set as the default TV screensaver, all of the slideshow settings in the app will apply to the screensaver as well.
These instructions can be used to replace the built in ambient mode screensaver on Google Chromecast with Android TV and the new 4K Fire TV Sticks.
Step 1 – Install the App For Your Cloud Service
First ensure you have installed the app on your TV and it is working as you expect.
Please install the app for the service you are using:
- pixFolio – Google Photos and Slideshows
- gFolio – Google Drive Photos and Slideshows
- skyFolio – OneDrive Photos and Slideshows
- dFolio – Dropbox Photos and Slideshows
- flickFolio – Flickr Photos and Slideshows
Step 2 – Connect to the device Using ADB
The hardest part of this process is installing a program called ADB and connecting to your TV device. ADB is the “Android Debug Bridge” and allows you to connect from your computer to the Android TV or Fire TV and issue low level commands to the device.
To install adb, download the Android platform tools for your computer’s operating system from https://developer.android.com/studio/releases/platform-tools and unzip the zip file. You’ll find the adb command inside.
Now from a terminal or windows command prompt, change to the unzipped directory and connect to the device. I’ve found this guide to be good for that:
Once you have connected to the Android TV or Fire TV with adb, enter the adb command line by entering the following command:
Step 3 – Change the Android TV or Fire TV Stick’s Screensaver
Next, issue a command to change the Android TV or Fire TV’s default screensaver to one of my folio apps. The command will be different depending on the app you have.
While the commands may word wrap in your browser, they should all be entered on a single line with no line breaks.
Enter one of the following commands into the adb shell:
Enter this command for pixFolio – Google Photos and Slideshows on Amazon Devices:
settings put secure screensaver_components com.snapwood.picfolio/com.snapwood.picfolio.DreamService
Enter this command for pixFolio – Google Photos and Slideshows on Google Play Devices:
settings put secure screensaver_components com.snapwood.photos2/com.snapwood.picfolio.DreamService
Enter this command for flickFolio – Flickr Photos and Slideshows
settings put secure screensaver_components com.snapwood.flickfolio/com.snapwood.flickfolio.DreamService
Enter this command for gFolio – Google Drive Photos and Slideshows
settings put secure screensaver_components com.snapwood.gfolio/com.snapwood.gfolio.DreamService
Enter this command for skyFolio – OneDrive Photos and Slideshows
settings put secure screensaver_components com.snapwood.skyfolio/com.snapwood.skyfolio.DreamService
Enter this command for dFolio – Dropbox Photos and Slideshows
settings put secure screensaver_components com.snapwood.dropfolio/com.snapwood.dropfolio.DreamService
After issuing one of the above commands, verify the screensaver is set by issuing this command:
settings get secure screensaver_components
Step 5 – Optionally Change the Screen Timeout
To adjust the amount of time before the screensaver starts, issue this command into adb:
settings put system screen_off_timeout 300000
The 300000 is the amount of time in milliseconds before the screensaver starts. There are 1000 milliseconds in 1 second and 60000 milliseconds in 1 minute. So a value of 300000 milliseconds is 5 minutes.
Step 6 – Exit and Reboot
Now issue the following command to exit ADB:
Now reboot the TV device and you’re done!
Note: Restoring the Default Amazon Screensaver on Amazon Devices
If you ever want to restore the Amazon screensaver, connect to the Fire TV using adb and enter the adb shell by issuing the following command:
Then issue the following command to restore Amazon’s screensaver:
settings put secure screensaver_components com.amazon.bueller.photos/.daydream.ScreenSaverService