With our recent addition of the PRO Control product line, it’s now very easy to integrate a smart device such as a smartphone or tablet as a controller for an a/v or automation system. After choosing a control solution which supports smart devices, the dilemma now becomes what device should be used for interfacing with the control system. Should you get the compatible handheld remote with the system or just use your smart device.
Everyone will use their control system differently, but for the majority, people will tend to reach for a handheld remote vs their tablet or phone to control their audio/video system as this is what they are use to. It’s familiar, intuitive and is readily available on the coffee table. Advantage, handheld remote.
Then there are those who will argue, why would I buy a remote when my tablet can do everything the remote can. Let’s take the cost savings and put it towards other hardware or the control system itself. It can also be very convenient to some who like to carry their smart device with them all the time as access to their control system is a hands reach away. Advantage, smart device.
While the latter statements are true, with most advanced systems that support smart devices there is a cost associated for that feature. That cost being the license to utilize the app for the control system. There are other things to consider when using a smart device for control, such as will that device be readily available when you need it. Sometimes iPads grow legs courtesy of your kids. Think about the steps it takes to change a channel on the TV with a tablet. First you have to tap it to wake it up, then select your control app, find the cable box device, and finally click the channel up/down button. While a handheld remote is a single click if it’s already on the cable box device, which most likely it would be if you were watching TV.
Taking all these points into consideration, Cliff Designs Media Systems recommends to have both if you are in this situation. Use the handheld remote as the primary controller and for those times you are in bed using Facebook on your tablet, have the control app available as a secondary controller.