Originally Posted by majortom
...It seems that Thinkflood's Redeye pro is the competition for this product. From what I can tell, if one needs two serial ports and ir (presuming that one does not need steerable ir), one will spend $300 for hardware, and about 37 for the application. A redeye pro is $500, so it is a bit more expensive, however there is no cost for the application so if one requires several iTunes accounts (in my case, there are 4 in our household) the price difference disappears quickly. Thinkflood also supports android and Mac clients, so one could get a cheap android tablet as a dedicated remote, while still using iOS devices for those that had them.
The biggest issue with the Redeye Pro is that it is not yet clear that their ip and serial support are real yet. The biggest advantage is that any guest with an iOS or android device can download the app free and instantly control the system (maintaining the current system state).
I am curious if anyone has tried both and what their experiences have been.
I too think that perhaps RedEye is the closest competitor, although iRule is also in there as an alternative.
RedEye actually appears very powerful with a full scripting language available for those who wish to delve into it in detail. However, no serial or IP support as yet. I don't even know if it's scheduled. The other problem is that the blaster devices are almost 3 times the price of the Global Cache units used by Roomie and iRule. But there's a reason for this and it's what gives RedEye a real advantage over the others...
The remote interface appears to be actually stored on the blaster. So as mentioned before, get the app and you're away. But there's another BIG plus. All active remotes are kept in sync. So an action initiated by one remote is replicated on any other connected remotes. So change an activity on one remote and any other remotes will update to reflect that. This also means that if one remote is used first, then another is 'started', the second one will show the same state as the first one as it will receive the information from the blaster (which is actually a small Linux server). The other cool aspect of this is that any browser can access the blaster and run the same 'app'. So full control is available from any iOS device with the app and also from any Mac or PC etc that can browse the network. This is all great stuff.
Also, RedEye has variables, so you can store state information. So the current state of the system is known, i.e. what is the power status of each device and what inputs are selected. IOW, just like the Harmony remotes. AFAICT, neither Roomie or iRule do any such thing and having messed with Prontos for years, it's a backward step losing that smartness of the Harmonies.
But as I said, the RedEye blasters are expensive and proprietary. I do love the idea of using the Global Cache adapters since they are usable by many of the high end systems such as Roomie, iRule and also DemoPad.
Speaking of which, DemoPad needs an actual application in order to set it up and that app is Windows only. So you need Windows to configure an app for your Apple iOS devices. Ha, rules that out for me even though I could run Windows if I wanted - which I don't.
But that leaves several questions regarding Roomie and iRule.
Will there ever be the ability to store state information and so 'know' what is on, what is off and e.g. what inputs are currently selected? This is such an important issue, I'm quite surprised that these developers have done nothing to address it.
How do they handle cyclic commands? Sometimes incorrectly referred to as 'toggle' but with more than 2 states. E.g. the input selection for some amps or TVs is by repeatedly pressing the same button. I hate that, but for many devices we're stuck with it. The Harmony remotes remember what was last selected and hence know how many commands to send to switch to the required input. How do Roomie and iRule handle this, because if no state information is or can be saved, there's NO way to successfully handle that situation. Trust me, every Pronto user has been wishing for a solution to that for years. If neither of these new products can handle this, that's really bad news.
I've already spent far too long reading up on these products just to find out the answers to such questions. Anyone here help with any answers?