Logitech’s Harmony division has long made some of the very best universal remotes. But their latest product turns the very best smartphones and tablets into a great universal remote. Meet Harmony Link and the Harmony Link App.
The Harmony Link hardware is a disc that’s placed near your entertainment system and provides the link between the new controller and the equipment using a local WiFi network. Tiny IR Blasters snake from the backside of the sleek disc to your cable box, TV and A/V hardware — just like every other Harmony remote. This not only facilitates communication but also allows owners to place all the unsightly hardware in a closet, enclosed cabinet, or like in my house, a basement room underneath the living room. Logitech says the Harmony Link can replace up to eight remotes.
But this hardware isn’t the fun part. Nope, the real magic comes from the iPad app.
The Harmony Link App turns the iPad into a universal remote, but one with a touch of flare. Instead of just being a touchscreen remote with the usual assortment of playback controls, the iPad app turns the chore of finding a TV program into a fun excursion. Slide through the interactive TV listings and just press Watch Now to engage the magic of Harmony Link, which will switch your TV to the appropriate station. Of course the app also features all the normal device controls and activity functions generally associated with Harmony remotes.
At launch, only the iPad will feature this interactive programming guide. The iPhone and Android app will only display activity buttons and device controls. Expect the Harmony Link in stores next month with a $99 MSRP.