We’ve already shared how Sense TV brings an interactive TV guide and universal remote control to your HTC One. But that isn’t all, the HTC One’s infrared (IR) blaster is also open to developers for integration into their own amazing apps.
A great example of this is the “Smart IR Remote for HTC One” app from Color Tiger, a Palo Alto-based development company. Where HTC’s Sense TV focuses on simplicity and controlling your entertainment system, Color Tiger’s Smart IR Remote is a sophisticated tool for power-users who want the most flexibility from their IR remote.
I spent some time chatting with the developers from Color Tiger on their new app:
What is the Smart IR Remote?
Sergiu Dogaru: Smart IR Remote is an app built solely to replace the multitude of remotes in everyone’s house with only one remote, available as an app on something that’s already always in your hands: your phone. And because it’s running on such a marvelous piece of hardware, we are trying to make it much more than just a remote replacement. You can now make your phone do multiple remote actions with the touch of a single button (like turning on all your devices at once), but buttons of multiple remotes on a single screen and arrange them to your liking, and even let your phone mute your TV or Home Theater when your phone rings!
What gave you the idea for the app?
Sergiu: When we first found out that the HTC One will include an IR Blaster, we just knew that this is going to be big. The idea simply popped into our heads, and we knew we had to do it. So we started working on it, a little over a month before the HTC One would officially be available for people in the stores, so they would be able to use our app from the first minute. And we did.
What was the most difficult part of developing the app?
Sergiu: Well, we can certainly say that integrating the HTC Sense SDK with IR support was the easiest. As for the most difficult, there isn’t something in particular we would say it was difficult.
We’ve been doing Android for 5 years, so now the only real challenge was building a product that’s powerful and customizable, while still being simple and really easy to use. That kind of balance is really hard to achieve, and no matter how close your app gets to it, there’s always room for better, so we’re working on that!
What was involved in using the IR API? What was your experience like?
Sergiu: Since the HTC One is a feature-complete phone when it comes to the IR, and HTC provides us access to all the features, we’ve tried to make best use of every capability in the phone. Integrating the SDK was extremely easy (it literally took us only 15 minutes), and we can honestly say it’s one of the easiest android SDKs we’ve ever integrated in our apps.
On top of all these, we’d like to say that we believe that building Smart IR Remote for the HTC One was one of the best ideas we’ve had in a long time, and we’re really happy with the results. We only wish more people knew about it!
Sound like the solution to your remote needs? Download the Smart IR Remote for HTC One today.
The IR Blaster API is just one of the many features of the HTC One you can integrate into your application. Learn more about enhancing your app with features from our HTC OpenSense SDK on our HTCdev site.