New Potato FLPR
iWorld Australia, www.iworldaustralia.com.au
Easy to use; replaces all your remote controls
No command strings
I spend my life playing with gadgets and gizmos that promise the earth and fail to deliver, so it was a wonderful surprise to hook up the easy-to-use FLPR from New Potato.
It’s an infrared gizmo that easily turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a universal remote capable of replacing nearly all the remotes in your home entertainment setup.
The FLPR itself is about the size of a 20c coin. You simply plug it into the dock connector, download the free app from the App Store, go through the setup process and sit back and enjoy yourself.
The app appears upside-down, so you’re holding your iPhone or iPod touch with the FLPR unit pointing towards your AV gear.
Along the top of the screen is a row of icons denoting each of your devices. The number you can have here is unlimited, and range from TV and Blu-ray to media servers and drapery/shades.
Setting up is fast and easy. I have quite a lot of AV gear, and it took less than five minutes to get everything recognised and working.
You select the type of unit (TV, DVD, games, etc), then the brand and device, give it a name and choose a ‘skin’ for the background look. That’s it, though you can go back in and change the icon at a later stage.
The FLPR didn’t miss a beat, recognising my Pioneer plasma, Denon receiver, Denon universal disc player, TiVo PVR and Xbox 360.
The FLPR knows thousands of infrared codes, but if for some reason it doesn’t know your device, or doesn’t recognise a command or two, you can ‘teach’ it the IR codes by facing the two remotes towards each other and using a simple wizard on the app that prompts you when to press the buttons on the original remote.
A really nice feature is the master volume control, which you can link to the device of your choice.
If you have your iPhone set to the default Auto Lock time of one minute, you’ll find yourself having to press the Home button and swipe the iPhone on each time you want to change the volume or channel. But this can be changed in Settings > General > Auto-Lock.
Australian Macworld’s buying advice
The FLPR is not ideal for every situation. If you’re using your iPhone, for example, it’s a pain to have to switch to FLPR just to turn down the volume. It also doesn’t have the option to link a string of commands, say: Turn on TV, turn on receiver, switch receiver to DVD, turn on DVD and play disc.
But it’s effective, easy to use and a lot cheaper than a similarly featured stand-alone universal remote.
This review originally appeared in the July issue of Australian Macworld magazine.