Universal remotes typically fall into one of two categories: Logitech's and all others. We've played with several of Logitech's Harmony remotes over the years and rarely have we been disappointed. This time around, Logitech is taking things a step further by announcing its Harmony Smart Keyboard, which is a wireless keyboard and touchpad combination designed specifically for controlling streaming media in your living room.
You can program the Harmony Smart Keyboard to work without up to eight devices from a library of more than 225,000 gadgets from over 5,000 brands. It also comes with a Harmony Hub -- a hockey puck-shaped receiver that turns signals from the keyboard or your smartphone and translates them into commands your devices can understand, such as your Xbox One, Apple TV, Roku, and more.
"Internet-connected and streaming-media devices seem to deliver limitless entertainment options, however their accompanying remotes struggle to keep up with the text entry needed to search for selections," said Chad Thompson, senior director of worldwide marketing and product management for Logitech’s digital home business group. "Our goal with the Logitech Harmony Smart Keyboard is to unite Logitech’s expertise in both universal remotes and keyboards to provide a fast and simple way to search for and navigate through the vast content options available through the living room’s entertainment devices."
Like Logitech's other Harmony remotes, the Harmony Smart Keyboard supports one-touch actions. For example, if you touch the activity button for "Watch a movie," it will turn on the appropriate media devices with the correct settings and inputs. This is especially handy if you own a surround sound receiver.
Look for the Logitech Harmony Smart Keyboard to be available in March for $150 MSRP.