Today, Logitech announced the expansion of its Harmony® universal remote control lineup with Logitech Harmony® Ultimate and Logitech Harmony® Smart Control. Both products feature Logitech’s new Harmony Hub and Harmony Smartphone App to enable closed-cabinet and game console control. And, for the first time ever, Harmony can even help you set the mood in your living room: the Harmony Hub takes personalizing your activities a step further with the ability to control your Philips Hue lights with a tap of the Logitech Harmony Ultimate.
With just one one-touch, your remote can turn on your TV, start the Blu-ray, and dim the lights to the desired brightness or temperature and you’re ready to relax. With Logitech Harmony Ultimate, you can access all your entertainment devices – including infrared devices and game consoles – through your cabinets or walls. And, with the optional Harmony Smartphone App, anyone in the house can turn his or her smartphone into a personal universal remote.
Logitech Harmony Smart Control also transforms your iOS or Android phone into your new universal remote, enabling a personalized experience with customized controls including your own favorite channel icons. And, when your smartphone isn’t available, there’s a simple universal remote included with purchase, so anyone can access your home-entertainment system when you’re not there.
Check out the video below to see Logitech’s newest universal remotes in action.
The new devices look good but for the Harmony Ultimate $350 remote you need to get rid of the horrendous input lag when navigating the on screen interface. You can see it in the product demo video above when he swipes on the screen. Not acceptable to have a slow laggy interface on a $350 remote. That said the Smart Control system looks nice and would be a better option for tech savvy consumers. I love my Harmony 650 remote and have been looking to “move up” so I can control more devices. The Smart Control might just be my next remote.
Let’s hope the new Harmony Hub does not repeat the grievous errors the similar Harmony Link product did. The Link depended on the continued availability of Harmony’s servers which was found to be problematic and it required the owner’s broadband to be continually available. Should either one of them be down Link would be down and the iOs/Android devices using Link would be dark. It was a needless dependency which I expect was to provide for some revenue generating feature that was never implemented. Had this dependency been only required for updates there would be little compliant. When it worked it was a marvel. Trying to explain to the wife accustomed to dependable Harmony remotes why the iPhone app doesn’t work because you lost broadband while watching a Blue Ray disk was difficult.
Let’s hope that the new Harmony Hub retains the functionality of the Link while eliminating its needles vulnerabilities.