Philips unveils DUAL, a Unique Twofold Keyboard and Remote for Net TV

written by: Richard Kastelein

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Though it's not the uWand which I was salivating about - which is still a conceptual product from Philips, the new Philips DUAL remote is a sensible play into the advanced remote world. With Logitech partnering with Google to develop advanced remotes with keyboards and a number of other CE manufacturers building more advanced remotes (it's about time!) Philips is making the next step to offer a brilliant hardware solution for two screen social TV plays. It's time to get rid of the agonizingly useless TV remotes of the past and move on. 

Philips Home Control  has some experience in this area as it has now produced 1 billion remote controls since manufacturing commenced in 1991.


Commenting on reaching the 1 billionth milestone, Jean-Paul Abrams, General Manager OEM business, Philips Home Control said:

“We are delighted to announce our outstanding capabilities in the development and manufacturing of control devices here at IBC and to showcase our latest products and world-class technological expertise. It is also the ideal opportunity to present our achievements to many of our valued customers who are leaders in the broadcast industry. Thanks to them, we were able to reach this milestone of 1 billion remotes.”

From the press release:

Whereas in the past web access and interaction was restricted to PC devices, nowadays there is a clear trend that Broadcast Service providers, Consumer Electronics manufacturers as well as PC manufacturers are looking into offering two-way enabled connected devices for the living room. New features already available today include media-guides, web browsing as well as widgets accessing tightly integrated social and information-based contents & applications.

Research confirms that almost 75% of the TV viewers would like the opportunity to interact with TV programs, advertising and online contents using the remote control. In addition, social networking at local TV stations has gained considerable significance over the past year, as broadcasters integrate this feature into their online presence and storytelling.

Traditional on-screen user interface and remote controls are not designed or adequate to handle these features and thus a new approach is required. And while service providers are investing in new on-screen user interfaces, these can only offer a fulfilling user experience when combined with intuitive wireless input & control devices.

With its new keyboard remote, Philips Home Control provides the perfect solution and shows that sophistication and innovation can go hand in hand.

The new product is a remote and a keyboard in one, with the top side featuring a remote control, and the bottom side featuring a keyboard.

By simply turning the remote, a keyboard is available allowing text input as needed in media search, instant messaging and web browsing purposes.

The appliance is equipped with alternate input methods like pointing, touchpad, or optical sensor, allowing user interfaces to implement free cursor, gesturing and moving highlight mechanisms thereby making browsing a better experience than the traditional 4 directional keys.

“This new keyboard remote shows that we are on top of the upcoming trend” says Rick Siu, Director Product Management, Philips Home Control.

“It was challenging to develop this remote to cater for all these features, while at the same time we wanted the design to be slim, easy to operate and modern looking.

From the enormous interest we have gathered during the pre-launch period, I can honestly say we succeeded with glory.”


About the Author

Richard Kastelein
Founder of The Hackfest, publisher of TV App Market and global expert on Media & TV innovation, Kastelein is an award winning publisher and futurist. He has guest lectured at MIT Media Lab, University of Cologne, sat on media convergence panel at 2nd EU Digital Assembly in Brussels, and worked with broadcasters such as the BBC, NPO, RTL (DE and NL), Eurosport, NBCU, C4, ITV, Seven Network and others on media convergence strategy - Social TV, OTT, DLNA and 2nd Screen etc.

He is a Fellow of the UK Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and UK Royal Television Society (RTS) member.

Kastelein has spoken (& speaking) on the future of media & TV in Amsterdam, Belfast, Berlin, Brussels, Brighton, Copenhagen, Cannes, Cologne, Curacao, Frankfurt, Hollywood, Hilversum, Geneva, Groningen (TEDx), Kuala Lumpur, London, Las Vegas, Leipzig, Madrid, Melbourne, NYC, Rio, Sheffield, San Francisco, San Jose, Sydney, Tallinn, Vienna, Zurich...

He's been on advisory boards of TEDx Istanbul, SMWF UK, Apps World, and judged & AIB awards, Social TV Awards Hollywood, TV Connect & IPTV Awards.

A versatilist & autodidact, his leadership ability, divergent and synthetic thinking skills evolved from sailing the world 24000 miles+ offshore in his 20′s on sailboats under 12m.

He spent 10 years in the Caribbean media & boating industry as a professional sailor before returning to Europe, to Holland.

A Creative Technologist and Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Metis) his career began in the Canadian Native Press and is now a columnist for The Association for International Broadcasting and writes for Wired, The Guardian & Virgin. His writings have been translated into Polish, German and French. 

One of Kastelein's TV formats was optioned by Sony Pictures Television in 2012. 

Currently involved in a number of startups including publishing TV App Market online, The Hackfest and Tripsearch TV. As CSO for Worldticketshop he helped build a $100m company.

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