So Apple's announced the new Apple TV 4K — a worthy if not unexpected upgrade that includes 4K resolution (finally) and HDR (sweet).
One thing that apparently hasn't been given a much needed what-for? The remote control. The Apple TV remote as we've come to know it is is simple as it is infuriating, mainly because there's absolutely nothing ergonomic about it. If you're able to pick it up the right direction the first time, every time, you're a damned wizard.
And so it's important that you do the right thing and shun the stock Apple TV remote. Stick it in a drawer and forget that it exists. Or better yet, mail it back to Apple along with an inspirational note about how much Apple products mean to you — and how piss poor this remote is.
And then you need to buy something better. Here's what I'd do.
Logitech Harmony Elite
This is an expensive setup right here at close to $250. But, damn, I do love it. You get more buttons than you'll ever need, including slots for smart lights and outlets. (Seriously, I'll never get up to turn off the lights ever again.)
Plus it's got a touchscreen to make using a universal remote that much more idiot-proof. I might continue to decline, but I still can use this remote like it's second nature. That's innovation right there, folks.
Logitech Harmony Companion
OK, this one's far more affordable than the Elite, at about $130. (Yes, that's still not cheap.) It's what I have in the bedroom, and I'd probably recommend getting two of these over a single Harmony Elite.
For one, it's probably the best-designed product since my phone. Seriously, if this thing were a phone I'd carry it everywhere. It just molds itself right to my hand.
And it also does (almost) everything the Harmony Elite does, just without a touchscreen. I can still run every damn device I have, including lights and outlets and whatever else.
Oh, and it also controls the Apple TV just fine, even considering the goofy long presses of the menu button.
Elago R1 Intelli Case
If you do nothing else, pony up $11 and buy this little rubber case for the Apple TV remote. It's going to change the way you hold the remote, for sure. Or at the very least it might actually make you want to use the remote.
Multiple colors are a nice touch, too. I went with red, because I want to make sure I know where this remote is so I can avoid it and use something better. (Scroll back up if you need to.)
We'll just have to wait for Apple to invent a better remote somewhere down the line, I suppose.
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Phil is the father of two beautiful girls and is the Dad behind Modern Dad. Before that he spent seven years at the helm of Android Central. Before that he spent a decade in a newsroom of a two-time Pulitzer Prize-finalist newspaper. Before that — well, we don't talk much about those days.