Sevenhugs' Smart Remote is a universal remote that takes a very different spin on the concept than the ones we've seen so far. The company has shown up at CES before with an earlier prototype of the device, and ran a successful Kickstarter to fund production, but this year showed off the final hardware of the remote that will ship in September.
Instead of static physical buttons, the Smart Remote has a touchscreen that can change and adapt to whatever device you're using. The idea is simple: just point the Smart Remote at a device and it’ll show you the correct custom control for it. So, pointing it at a television will surface TV controls, while pointing at your lamp may bring up a slider for a Philips Hue bulb. And if two objects are too close together, the Smart Remote offers an easy toggle to select the right one.
The Smart Remote uses a group of wall-mounted sensors, coupled with combination of an internal motion sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass to track the position and orientation of the remote. Then, the user can program the locations of various devices through an app so the remote knows what inputs to send out.
Sevenhugs is claiming between one to two days of battery life for the remote between charges, which can be done with the included USB-C dock. The wall sensors last about a year, and use disposable AAA batteries. The Smart Remote is currently available on Indiegogo to preorder for $229, with a full retail price of $299 when it launches in September.