VooMote Zapper Universal Remote for the iPod/iPhone/iPad

Jan 30 2012

Missing Remote has a strong attachment to remotes. When we find a universal remote we do a dance because we hopefully can have one remote to rule all the media play back units under our TV and hopefully our HTPC as well. We have already viewed the Peel Universal Smart Remote for iPhone and Android, as well as the Griffin Beacon Universal Remote for iPhone. With no shortage of many other devices on the market like Logitech Harmony line of remotes. The VooMote Zapper is slightly different because it turns your Apple iDevice(iPhone/iPad/iPod), sorry no Android currently, into an all in one remote solution without any secondary accessories, besides the VooMote Zapper that plugs directly into the iPhone/iPad/iPod. It has a database with a large amount of TV/VCR/Blu-ray/Receivers/Roku/etc codes already stored internally. If the IR code is not stored the application can learn from other IR remotes that are not stored in the database. If the code is not included, then it becomes a learning remote. This remote also has a macro mode, or One Touch, so you can have it control multiple devices by one button. You can set this up to have one function turn on the TV, Blu-ray, turn the TV to the right input, and eject the Blu-ray disc. It also supports gestures for device control. Gesture control allows you to swipe the screen to control the volume or other quick controls. One View allows you to have all of your device controls on one screen. The VooMote Zapper would be a replacement for all of your universal remotes; the programming of this remote is simple, you can customize each screen to your liking. All of your other remotes in your house may become lonely and will be looking for attention once you get the VooMote Zapper setup.

Device

The VooMote Zapper has a very user-friendly application and is built for the iPhone and iPod, but will also work on a iPad with 2x mode (to use the full screen). It gives you options to customize your remote screen for each device or a collection of media players, such as a TV/Blu-ray/Roku/HTPC. You can also setup the application for multiple rooms in your house. You have the option to change names and pictures for any room or device. The VooMote Zapper will try out a few different commands on each device when you are setting it up to make sure it is using the right codes for full functionality. As stated previously, the VooMote Zapper works exclusively with Apple Devices. The VooMote Zapper does come in a variety of colors and the application can change colors to match. With the VooMote Zapper MSRP $69.99 makes this worth while purchase, if you already have a iDevice and gives your iPod Touch new life.

Setup

The package is the size of a stack of coasters and displays the color of the VooMote through it’s translucent package. After you remove the VooMote Zapper from the package you plug it into the port on your iDevice and it will take you to the correct application needed to use the device. The application will recognize the device, give you a color choice, and then you select start or demo. You will have an option for the room you are setting up and then adding devices. If you don’t know the model number of the device you are trying to control it doesn’t matter as Voomote Zapper will try all the codes that are stored for that manufacturer. Once the device is selected, you can go through the basic setup and the VooMote Zapper will test some commands to make sure it is using the right code. Add as many devices as desire or combine devices together to make one button to start all the devices that have already been added.
If you are looking for a button that is not on the default remotes then you can add new ones and program them to do what you would like with the learning command. You would point your current remote at the unit and it will learn the code from the remote. You can also rearrange the buttons on the remote to move the most used ones to a single screen.
When setting up the device for my systems, three Xbox 360 as extenders to my Windows 7 Media Center Machine (Extender for Windows Media Center), there was an Xbox 360 button set, which worked on the first try. VooMote Zapper did add some volume buttons to the remote and I was able to program those to my TV controls. There was an option for PS3 as well, but nothing happened because PS3 is Bluetooth only.
After only a few minutes I was up and running and controlling my TV, Xbox 360, upstairs Blu-ray, and entire setup in the basement and bedroom. The only key was that I had to have line-of-sight of all devices to make them work, the manufacturer says up to 25 feet is supported. The VooMote Zapper does not require a computer for remote setup, unlike the logitech harmony remote where you are tied to a computer.

Usage

After testing the unit in different rooms of the house and at different light levels and angles, I didn’t experience any issues with controlling any device. When the VooMote Zapper is inserted into the  iPhone/iPod/iPad it will stay awake with the software running, it will keep the remote from entering standby;  which negatively impacts the battery life.
The One View option is a very nice feature since you are going for the universal remote feel, and you get control of all the devices in the room with one screen. You can fully customize the screen to what feature and/or buttons you want on the screens.
One Touch is another feature that works in conjunction with One View as well; it will allow you to have one button to do many different things. For example, “Power All” can turn on all of your devices or you hitting “Mute” can also pause the Blu-ray if you were playing one, once it is setup under macros.
Gestures is also another feature of this application that allows you to setup gestures for a common task; for example, you can swipe in a “V” line on any screen and the volume will go down. You can set them up in any arrangement you would like, for it works like the One Touch feature.
The remote is very usable and just requires an initial quick setup; but, if you take the time to program some of the features you like you won’t be stuck hunting for a particular button because the screen is not the normal size of the remote that you are accustomed to using.

Conclusion

Using the VooMote Zapper makes me want to put all my other remotes into a drawer. The VooMote Zapper would be a great universal remote to have in every room of my house. It is very easy to use and my wife picked it up and was using it without any training. The problem I have is that the iPod is harder to keep in one spot and the iPad travels around the house all the time, so I would have to keep one device there all the time and make sure the kids don’t play with it when we are watching something. The price of the unit, if you already have a iDevice to dedicate to the task, makes it very competitive. If you don’t have a iDevice then VooMote Zapper option is on the higher end of the universal remote option on the market. Even paying the higher price the options you get with the VooMote Zapper gives you more features some of the remotes on the market struggle with.

Pros:

●          Very easy, basic setup
●          Supports any IR device in the house
●          Learning IR options
●          Allows setup of One Touch, One View, or Guestures
●          Make Custom Buttons for anything (Macros)
●          MSRP $69.99 cheaper then many other Universal Remotes

Cons:

●          Time Intensive Custom Buttons
●          Have to Dedicate iPod/iPad for remote
Thanks to Zero1.tv for providing the review sample. The VooMote Zapper can be purchased from VooMote.tv

 

Comments

Well I tried this device and I had numerous problems with app crashing whenn trying to teach it various functions from other remotes.  The developer says a new version is due in about a week which will address some crashes and they advised that some stray reflections from the source device may cause problems.  It does look promising although it only works with IOS 5 devices so don't think, like me, you can use an old iPhone 3 as a dedicated remote.

 

Have you set thisup to control the win 7 system or just the extenders?

Currently it's working with my TV, amp, satellite box etc and whilst the Win 7 system recognises key presses you can't input multiple ones of the same key eg you can't press down, down you have to put another key press in between eg, down, right down.  Weird!

ferraris wrote:

Currently it's working with my TV, amp, satellite box etc and whilst the Win 7 system recognises key presses you can't input multiple ones of the same key eg you can't press down, down you have to put another key press in between eg, down, right down.  Weird!

what device did you use to recognize your Win7 box? i tried under Microsoft, but no luck really...

thanks for helping out.. I don't have have a HTPC setup to play with it.. All I use is extenders..

Hi ! This is my first visit to your article! Your article provided us beneficial information about zapper to work on,i also get remote app works fine on my ulefone phone.

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