CEDIA 2008: Philips Bows Custom-Class Remote

By John Laposky On Sep 4 2008 - 6:00am

Philips' consumer lifestyle division will use CEDIA Expo to toss its hat into the high-end custom whole-house-system remote-control ring.

The new two-way Pronto TSU9800 remote is a major step-up refresh of Philips' existing Pronto TSU9600, adding a flush-mounted 6.4-inch VGA touchscreen display, two extra buttons and an optical rotary wheel.

The remote's functionality is driven by ProntoScript, a JavaScript-based software tool that enables installers to create a dynamic two-way user interface for system control over RS232 or IP with full graphical flexibility.

The tool is incorporated in the new ProntoEdit 2.0 Professional software. Ready-made ProntoScript modules with Pronto partners are available from the company's Web site. An installer can opt to use standard-installation reference files and simply reassign the various components. More advanced JavaScript programmers can create their own ProntoScript modules for complete system operation and feedback.

User interface can be created to fully incorporate the end user's preferences, so, for instance, only the devices and buttons that are used most, will be visible on the touchscreen. Graphical design elements such as backgrounds, icons, buttons and colors can be chosen by the user.

According to the company, the ProntoEdit software offers installers a flat user interface with drag-and-drop functionality, single-page view allowing easy access to various building blocks, a quick start wizard that allows any installer to set up a project with three steps, and a revamped page view that incorporates the latest graphical tools to simplify transitioning from portrait to landscape and from QVGA to VGA.

The remote has a learning frequency range of 25 kHz-1 MHz, with five transmitting LEDs, and a universal IR code databse of more than 3,000 brands. It has 64MB of flash memory and 64MB RAM.

Programmable one-touch control allows users to perform multiple commands with one press of a button via macros of up to 250 steps.

A range of extenders is available, both wired and wireless, that boosts the range of transmission of the remote to allow control of equipment in cabinets or in other rooms.

The 9800 has embedded software modules for out-of-the-box control of Escient's FireBall audio and video servers, the Imerge SoundServer S3000 and other XiVA supported music servers from Elan, SpeakerCraft, Xantech, Niles and Revox, as well as Lutron RadioRa lighting systems.

The preconfigured lighting control includes a full onscreen user interface for controlling lighting scenes, moods and individual dimmers. Onscreen feedback lets the end user know which lights are on throughout the house.

The remote comes with a docking station and an optional wall-mounting plate with Ethernet connector will become available at a price to be announced.

It is charged by a 4,200 mAh lithium-ion battery.

Philips expects to ship the TSU9800 in late September at a suggested retail of $2,399.

Philips is in booth 516.

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