Why do remote controls still exist?
The post TV Is Broken reminded me of something that I’ve been thinking about for a while. It’s only tangential to the problem of content on TV.
I don’t buy a lot of consumer electronics, but it so happens that I have six devices that can comfortably browse the web from my couch. They are usually within reach when I’m operating the TV or its cohorts (a receiver/amplifier and a PlayStation 3). Many of the things connected to my TV, including the TV itself, are connected to my home network.
So, why do we still have remote controls? Why can’t I control my interconnected devices with a web interface which advertises itself on my WiFi network (via Bonjour, for example), which my iPad can pick up and browse?
Why can’t I coordinate my media sources and my output options from one device without insane ugly hacks (I’m looking at you, Logitech Harmony)?
There’s probably a big opportunity licensing and implementing something like this for TV and set-top/DVR/game devices.