image Logitech strikes a blow for convenience again with the Harmony One All-in One Remote. This thing is amazing in that it is reported to truly be universal. Like many of the other Harmony remotes previously released, the unit requires the user to install software on a personal computer, either Windows or OSX operating systems covered, and download, via a USB cable the codes to operate the items that a person has in their system. 

The remote will control (can be concurrently programmed for) up to 15 devices. This is certainly more than most users will have in one place in the house. The unit will control so many things in concert to make things absurdly simple for the user after proper setup.  For example, Watch A DVD can be used to start the television, the DVD player, the control preamp or receiver, adjust the volume, lower the lights in the home theater, and slow the ceiling fan to sub-audible speed. This is nice!

One thing about this remote that is very nice compared to many other full-featured remotes is that the remote comes with a recharging cradle, which means that if the remote ever dies, the user has only himself to blame – the problem cannot be attributed to the children in the house absconding with the last of the AA batteries!


The item has just been introduced at CES in Las Vegas, and has a few flaws in the way it works, but since the unit uses programmable memory, and not a hard-coded EPROM, the majority of the flaws will be smoothed rather quickly. Other features, such as the number of concurrent things controlled on the screen, which at three is fewer than the previous top-of-the-line units from the company, will probably be changed after a large outcry from dissatisfied users. Since many who use this may not be used to the older units, the want or need may not manifest itself with complaints to Logitech.

If this remote has any fatal flaw, it is the problem of the rather high tech way in which it must be set up to make the operation afterwards appear easy. Anyone who is enthusiastic about the assembly of a perfect (for them) home theater will have the intelligence, or persistence, to get things worked out. Others who simply wish to enjoy the power of the remote from a simple user standpoint might wish to employ the help of the geeky teenager down the street for initial setup.

[tags] Logitech, Harmony One, remote control, USB connection, universal remotes [/tags]