Depends on your phone. My Samsung Note 4 had an IR and I had a universal remote app on it. You could program tv's, DVD players, stereos, soundbars, satellite and cable boxes, and even remote controlled air conditioners.
@BeannachtOraibh I only recently discover this when I was playing around with NFC tags, then I realise I've got IR on my LG and I can use it to control my tv and media players, it's very cool! But it's not straight forward, took me a while to get it working.