© 2014 BOB SKIDMORE ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
We all suffer from remoteitis, the, “we have too many remotes”, disease. While there is a number of universal remotes on the market that claim to cure this by combining all your remotes into one, they most often seem to leave one or two functions out. Ah, let’s also not forget that we generally can’t locate the remote when we need it. Sound all too familiar?
Well, here’s a twist, Zmart is a remote app made by Aspinn and marketed by Viatek Products, that claims to solve this problem. They provide a FREE app for iPhone, iPad and most Android devices that is downloadable from the Apple App Store or Google Play. Prior to operation you do need to purchase the Zmart Remote Pro, a small plastic sensor that plugs into your headphone jack.
(TIP If you have an external case or battery pack such as a Mophie, you will need to use the included adapter that extends the jack. This adapter is flexible which means you have to hold it while aiming to the device you wish to control. Naturally, you can remove the case or external battery pack before using the Zmark and it will work just fine without the adapter.)
Once the Zmart adapter is plugged in and you’ve download the app you need to activate it. Now you’re ready to program your phone or pad. Aspinn has over 95 brands with a selection of over 200,000+ models that are preselectable, so you just have to follow the simple instructions to add them to the app. If you don’t see your device among all these selections, and they do add new ones periodically, it is possible to but-up the device’s remote to the Zmart sensor and teach the app all the commands of your remote. I did this with an older HD widescreen and it worked well, however, it is a bit of a tedious task and requires some patience.
(TIP Zmart is not an RF device that sends out radio waves, but rather an inferred operating device. This means it must be aimed at the items you wish to control. It also does not use the Internet in any way, so you can’t control devices from afar.)
My results were generally positive. If you can use the Zmart without the adapter extension, it’s a very useful tool. Would I replace my remote with the Zmart? I don’t think so, but it’s handy when you misplace an original remote, or an original replacement is no longer available. It works with most Blu-ray players, home theater systems, cable boxes, DVD players, fans and the Smart Switch. The Smart switch, sold by the same company, but not tested by THE GADGETEER, allows you to remotely control most electrical appliances like fans, lights, coffeemakers, etc., with its own remote, and also with the Zmart app, you can control them on your phone or pad, too. Zmart is also compatible with the European Smartphone standard.
GADGETEER’s RATING: ****
For more information go to:
YouTube Instructional demo: http://bit.ly/1lpq5Vu
Graphic credits: Google Images
Bob Skidmore is a freelance writer, who may be contacted at email@example.com, or followed at twitter.com/bskidmore for the latest gadget industry news. He does not represent, or endorse any of the products he reviews and his opinions are solely his points of view and not those of the manufacturer. The manufacturer generally supplies products at no cost for the articles and no other compensation is received. THE GADGETEER is highly selective as to products he feels worthy of review so as not to waste the reader’s time, thus the reason for many superior ratings. Some information for this article may be gathered from various sources available to the author.