Zentral Turns Smartphones Into Remotes

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 Hauppauge, N.Y. - Audiovox this month will ship its first products that turn BlackBerry smartphones, iPhones and iPod Touches into Bluetooth remotes to control home-entertainment systems.

Another product turns a BlackBerry into a Bluetooth garage-door remote.

 A total of four products fall under the Zentral Home Command name, a sub-brand of the Acoustic Research brand. The strategy includes new marketing collateral, packaging and a website.

The products bundle a Bluetooth bridge and an app for use with Bluetooth-equipped smartphones. For example, the $69-suggested Smartphone AV Remote package for the Blackberry and a $79 version for the iPhone/iPod Touch feature an A/V remote bridge that relays Bluetooth commands via infrared blasts to a home A/V system. Consumers can control up to 16 devices, including DVRs, and execute one-touch commands.

 The $69 Smartphone Jukebox consists of an iPod-docking Bluetooth bridge that connects to home audio systems and can be controlled from a Bluetooth-equipped BlackBerry.

The fourth product is the $59 Zentral Smartphone Garage Remote, which turns a Blackberry into a garage-door opener.

All four were originally slated for spring availability.


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