New Apple Patent Offers Insight Into Universal Remote

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A new patent published this week titled “Apparatus and Method to Facilitate Universal Remote Control” reveals a touchscreen-based universal remote that would operate a variety of devices, including computers, and promises to reduce the clutter found on many universal remotes sold today.

AppleInsider discovered the patent and quoted the filing as saying: “Users must spend time learning a new remote control or programming an existing universal remote each time they purchase a new remotely controllable appliance, which detracts from the enjoyment of using the appliance after it is first purchased. What is needed is an apparatus and a method to provide remote control over multiple appliances without the difficulties described above.”

A “discovery mechanism” in the remote would enable the software to receive a specific interface from a device and present a touchscreen-based layout that uses only the necessary inputs. The remote would gray out the button for any previously-discovered devices that are currently out of range.

The patent is credited to Albert Vidal. A Google search and a check of LinkedIn by TMO did not produce any background information on that individual.

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Comments

Lee Dronick

reveals a touchscreen-based universal remote that would operate a variety of devices

I have said several times that the rumored 7” iPad is a remote control. Possibly connected at the hip with the rumored Apple TV.

Garion

I have said several times that the rumored 7? iPad is a remote control. Possibly connected at the hip with the rumored Apple TV.

That’s actually a pretty good idea, Sir. I think you might be right that Apple could make an affordable simple 7 inch iPad designed to live on the coffee table as an easy to use, but super advanced remote control to go with new features on the next version of Apple TV

How ever I also think that people who own iPhones and iPod Touches and full featured iPads will be able to get the same remote control features via a new app from Apple.
It’s all about growing the ecosystem and synergy (halo effect) between various Apple products.

anovelli

“I have said several times that the rumored 7? iPad is a remote control. Possibly connected at the hip with the rumored Apple TV.”

Agreed… that would be great. Combine it with iOS and it also becomes a great game controller….

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