So I've had my EFO for about month and wanted to report back my thoughts:
The EFO, or iPazzPort, is a HTPC remote made by a vendor in Hong Kong (EFO). It is a touchpad/keyboard combo remote comes in three flavors: wired, IR wireless or bluetooth (this review is for the IR wireless version). The remote also has a backlit screen and is plug and play (no drivers needed). It is rechargable throught a mini USB to USB cable and contains a lithium battery. A full charge should get your about 75 hours of play time and the battery is suppossedly good for about 3 years. The battery is not replaceable.
For the purposes of this review, I used the VISTA OS, Vista MCE and Firefox as a browser.
Short Story - the unit does what it's suppossed to do allowing the user to navigate webpages and MCE as if they had a mouse/keyboard combo.
Long Story -
1. Shipping - Unit shipped out of Hong Kong and took about two to three weeks to arrive. For some reason, the shipper demands signature which means you'll most likely be taking a trip to the post office to receive it.
2. Fabrication - Unit is a little larger than a credit card and about as thick as a stack of 5 credit cards (5.25" long x 3.25" wide x 6/16" thick). It's extremely light as it's totally made of plastic. Would have liked the unit to be heavy as I'm concerned with durability. Due to how thin it is, it can easily be lost between the sofa cushions. It's also rather wide (5.25") which presents some ergonomic challenges if you have smaller hands. Would have preferred it to be in the 3" - 4" inch range in width.
2. Range - Comes with a USB IR dongle (not mini dongle size). I have my HTPC sitting in a wooden box with the doors shut about 10 feet away from the couch and the dongle and remote still can communicate with each other. Remote is plug and play and has no issues using VISTA.
3. Touchpad - for the most part it works well. I probably should turn my mouse sensitivity up as I need swipe the touchpad several times to navigate the mouse pointer from one side of the screen to the other. The left and right mouse buttons also work relatively well however I would have preferred them farther away from the letter keys as sometimes they get in the way with each other.
4. Navigating web pages - in terms of surfing webpages without having to type, I could easily navigate web pages (go forward and back, click on links and get to favorites within the browser). The backlit keys work very well in total darkness (the EFO is one of the few HTPC remotes that have backlit keys). Scrolling long pages was a bit more difficult as you have to press the up, down, left or right scrolling button. I would have preferred two large scroll buttons on either side of the touchpad or a scrolling wheel so that I didn't have to look down and find the up,down, left or right buttons everytime scrolling was necessary. Typing letters with the remote works fine althought the buttons are very small. As with all of these small form factor HTPC remotes, you wouldn't want to type a term paper with them. Would have liked to hear an audible click everytime the button was pushed so I didn't have to look up at the screen and then down at the remote to make sure the correct letter was pushed.
The remote has a CAPS key and a SF (2nd Function key) which work fine once you realize how the remote functions. The LED lights on the top of the remote (which gives information about battery life and connectivity) are very small, so I'm not sure how effective they are.
A bug that I've noted so far with the remote which was also reported by itm (post #231) is that after the OS comes out of sleep mode the remote's keyboard malfunctions when trying to type anything. The keyboard acts as if you're holding down one of it's keys. The only way to stop this is by removing and putting back in the dongle.
The remote's not perfect, but as we've discussed throughout this thread, all of the remotes have their strengths and weaknesses. It's is small, unobtrusive, relatively cheap ($45 shipped) and has a backlit screen. The layout of the remote makes complete navigation difficult without looking down at the remote. It's nice when you can kinda of feel where all your main keys are on the remote when using one so it can pretty much be operated blind. The wife has been able to use it somewhat, but the mentality of having a computer on her TV is still somewhat daunting. Other then the bug mentioned earlier, I can pretty much get everything done I need. Of course, I still need my harmony handy to turn components on and off, change channels and volumes and so forth. I'm hoping at somepoint, Logitech will come out with a harmony remote which functions well as a HTPC remote. Until then, this will do.
Hope this was helpful.