“It comes with a DVD guide that helps [a consumer] set up the remote,” he says. “The DVD is the defining feature of all our retail products. All of them come with a DVD, and there’s a big prismatic sticker that comes on all of the packaging that shouts that it comes with the DVD guide.”
Upping the Ante
As companies differentiate their lines, more features are entering models. Monster Cable, who recently got into the home control game with lighting control products (IlluminEssence lighting modules) also released two remotes with RF technology that can connect to whole house systems. The first, the AVL300 ($599.95), works as a whole house remote and can control Monster’s lighting modules, which work using the Z-wave standard that is being touted as the successor of the X-10 device control platform—only based on RF and IR technology instead of communication over powerline. A lesser expensive model, the AV100 ($349.95), excludes the RF and lighting control features. The remotes are PC-compatible and can be user programmed on Monstercentral.com. They also feature incorporation of more popular technologies, such as iPod control.