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URC To Debut Wireless Keypad At Expo

Universal Remote Control said it will introduce the wireless, dual-use KP-900 wireless keypad at the Electronic House Expo.

The show begins March 13 in Orlando, Fla.

The KP-900 is a keypad remote designed to control all audio and video equipment in a home. It can be mounted on a wall or be used as a handheld remote, making it ideal for retrofitting into homes with existing entertainment systems, as well as for new homes, said the company.

The KP-900’s bracket is attached to a wall by four screws; the simplicity is meant to eliminate the cost and inconvenience of running new wires or opening the wall to add new wires. The keypad can reportedly be mounted in any room and anywhere in a room. Able to be used on the wall in its bracket, independently as a handheld or affixed to a refrigerator or other metal surface, the KP-900 is compatible with iPods and other portable music players.

It comes with a back-lit LCD screen, and injection-molded back-lit buttons with laser-etched labeling. Six buttons to the right of the screen are labeled based on what a user is watching or listening to and change accordingly. For example, the company said, someone watching TV will see a list of buttons useful to that activity. If the user selects “DVD,” the buttons will automatically change to control the DVD.

Other keypad features include three sets of keycaps for the top buttons: one set has no labels, and the other two simplify volume control (volume up, mute and volume down) and transport control (seek–, shuffle and seek+).

The KP-900 operates using IR signals with a range of 30 feet to 50 feet, or RF signals with a range of 50 feet to 100 feet when used with the company’s MRF-350 or MRF-260 RF base station. It features 4 megabits of flash memory, supporting up to 400 full pages of commands that can be distributed into as many as 255 devices, said the company. Additional features include a 255-color backlighting palette for the LCD display, one-touch blue backlighting for all the hard buttons, the ability to learn new IR commands, a small integrated speaker for audible feedback, a built-in sleep timer and a USB cable. The remote operates on four AAA batteries.

The KP-900 will be available in March at a suggested retail of $599. It is offered in three finishes: white, light almond and black.