Mad Men lovers may have noticed that in the previous two or season, the tv remote control has made an appearance on the series. The show started in 1960. Nevertheless, the current season occurs from the late ’60s, and that’s when TV remotes were becoming regular. (In actuality, they had been around since the ’50s, but hardly anyone had one.) The series is notorious for accuracy. And it’s amusing that these “clickers” really make a clicking sound when figures change the station.
Those early remotes did very little. They turned the TV off and on, changed the station and adjusted the volume. Those were the times. Today TV remotes must do much more, because entertainment systems are more complex. They must control tens of thousands of stations, in addition to cable boxes, smart-TV boxes, Internet connections, DVRs and much more.
Consumers generally get a great deal of ambivalence about remotes. They’re a convenience. But they are also too intricate. Each significant part of the TV program includes its own remote. And there are simply too many buttons. Additionally, remote controls are known to vanish strangely and will be the source of countless domestic power struggles. Whoever has the remote has the power.
The good thing is that new universal remote options have come on the market recently that really are simpler to use, and that also extend control to nonentertainment appliances, like lights.
Let us take a peek at three totally different alternatives. Click!
Logitech Harmony Ultimate Remote Control – $349.99
Logitech recently made universal remotes more universal by simply incorporating appliances to the list of devices you can control with your remote. Its new Harmony Ultimate product combines a “hub” and also a remote that collectively bring video games and lighting to the world of things you can control from the remote (in addition to the entertainment system).
I advised you about the Philips Hue lights, which is controlled using a smart-phone program. Now you can dim the lights straight from the remote as you are settling in to see a movie.
The Logitech Harmony Ultimate works with more than 225,000 home entertainment devices and more than 5,000 manufacturers, according to the organization. The hub also connects wirelessly to the Sony PS3, Nintendo Wii and Wii U game consoles (sorry, Xbox enthusiasts).
The Harmony Ultimate remote includes a customizable touch screen along with also the ability to program and customize it onto a pc.
iRule Cloud-Based Universal Remote Control System – $49.99
One of the more innovative remote control ideas not merely replaces your remote with your existing phone or tablet computer (as most programs do), but also puts the programming of the remote to the cloud.
If you have a lifetime, you might not be aware of what the cloud is, exactly. It just means that data or software which may otherwise sit in your computer or tablet computer instead resides out there on the web somewhere. For example, 15 years ago your email software was an application you would install in your own PC. Now, you may use a service such as Google’s Gmail, which isn’t software you set up but instead a site you visit. Gmail is at the cloud.
A company called iRule does the exact same thing using software that performs the same tasks as the software inside your remote. It’s just recently unveiled version 3 of its iPhone and iPad program. (The organization is promising an Android version for later this season.)
Here is how it works. You download and install the program in your iPhone or even iPad. Then you open and pay to get an account on the organization’s website. Follow the directions and wizards to drag and drop rules and modules into your personal distant port. When you start the program on your mobile device, your custom universal remote is not there.
It’s a fantastic idea, because even if you lose your phone or update to another telephone, your customization and programming does not vanish with it. And you can add additional devices, and they can all make the most of the programming you have previously done.
The business also offers a very wide assortment of hardware devices for linking to a huge collection of home entertainment equipment in addition to lights and other home appliances.
TouchSquid Home Remote Control for Samsung Galaxy S4 – $19
Most TV remotes use infrared (IR) for communication between the TV and the remote. In the past year, the accession of infrared capability into major smart-phone versions has become something of a trend, and a happy one for men and women who wish to replace their universal remote using their smart phone.
The quintessential examples of the trend would be the Samsung Galaxy S4 along with the HTC One, which are currently the two major choices into the Apple iPhone from the smart-phone market. And with no iPhone, they have “IR blasters” (the capacity to be the infrared remote controls).
The fantastic thing about having a wise phone as a remote is that the software part of it can be opened to overall competition among different businesses, which provides consumers choice and also drives those companies to make better products.
A company called TouchSquid creates an all-purpose TV remote program for Android devices. However, the company also makes a few model-specific versions of this program that can benefit from the specific characteristics of each model. The most recent version is for its industry-leading Samsung Galaxy S4 smart telephone.
The new program lets up to four individuals each set up a separate profile, so each member of the family can use a customized remote interface using their own mobiles. (Another version that enables up to ten devices prices more.) The TouchSquid also has features that let advanced users app not only TV stuff but in addition drapes, lights and other home components.
More: The Way Smart TV Will Change Your Living Room