Futuristic gizmo puts a new "spin" on controllers

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The smooth, dome-shaped Spin Remote offers seamless control that nestles in the palm of a hand(Credit: Spin Remote)

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Universal remotes are often go-to gadgets for those seeking to simplify and consolidate control over multiple devices. The latest takes decluttering to a new level by ditching buttons in favor of an interface that responds to touch, motion, orientation, and rotation. The Spin Remote SDC-1 is designed to command and communicate with most infrared, wireless, and Bluetooth Smart devices, while also transforming smartphones and tablets into universal remotes themselves.

It can be quite cumbersome to handle several system remotes when one simply wants to watch some TV. So it's little wonder why modern universal remotes, such as Logitech's Harmony Touch, have grown in popularity. But to the creative team behind the Spin Remote, even having some buttons must seem excessive. This smooth, dome-shaped device offers seamless control that nestles in the palm of a hand.

The Spin Remote activates upon touch and can be operated on surfaces or in mid-air. Its built-in sensors are meant to translate gestures and movements into commands. So depending on how this wireless dial is held and handled – orientation and direction of rotation matter – users can change channels, adjust volume, control smart devices (e.g. lights, speakers), or launch custom actions. The smart touchpad at the bottom can be set to advanced functions, profiles, and/or the navigating of menus.

Contrary to how most infrared controllers need to be pointed towards targets, the Spin Remote sends IR signals in every direction. While still requiring line-of-sight to work, it's possible for users to activate multiple pieces of IR equipment simultaneously without having to wave one's arms all over; Bluetooth and Wi-Fi devices need only be in range. And since Spin can switch to various saved device profiles, users have greater freedom of room-to-room use and mobility, unlike the fixed-position Onecue.

The Spin Remote is designed to learn from existing infrared remotes while also offering further setup and customization through the mobile app (Android and iOS compatible). The app grants users the opportunity to simplify a series of relevant buttons/actions/functions and assign them to specific gestures, with commands confirmed via gentle vibration. On top of that, the Spin app turns smartphones and tablets into remotes without having to attach any hardware/dongles.

Years ago, a prototype Gesture Remote helped to prophesize the future of button-less multimedia control. Today, the universal Spin Remote takes aim at everything from infrared-operated TVs, DVD players, and cable/satellite boxes to smart devices, such as IoT thermostats, Sonos speakers, and Philips Hue products. Despite its strong points, the Spin Remote may frustrate some who prefer one-handed controllers. That, and mobile apps can be a weak link to hardware – an aspect recognized by the Sevenhugs Smart Remote.

The Spin Remote SDC-1 is currently available for a pre-order price of €100 (approximately US$112). The estimated delivery date is 1-2 weeks after ordering.

Source: Spin Remote

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