It’s hard to imagine our lives without a remote control device of some sort or another. We use them for most aspects of our daily routines, from watching TV to listening to music to controlling our house lights and even for starting our cars. It was in June of 1956, that the first practical television remote controller entered an American home, and as they say, the rest is history. Like most other technological devices, the remote control has evolved and developed over the decades since its introduction to the point that it now comes in many different forms. For example, many people now use their Smartphone’s and Tablets for easy access to audio visual and other devices in their home. The style and look of our remote controls has also drastically changed.
Here are 10 unusual remote controls that are perfect for situations when the typical handheld controller just won’t do:
Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver
This device is a metal replica of the Mark VII Sonic Screwdriver used by the current Doctor Who. It’s also a gesture-based remote that uses infrared (IR) technology, allowing users to flick, tap and rotate to control the TV, Blu-ray players, iPod docks, and beyond – just not beyond 39 commands
The Magic Wand
For all the budding Harry Potters, this unique controller can add a little magic to any ordinary night in front of the TV. It’s not going to make what’s on TV any better, but this fully functional remote can learn up to 13 commands from your existing remote controls and assigns different movements to each one. Aside from your TV, you can zap commands into your DVR, DVD player, music player, automated shades, or anything else that has its own controller
Pillow Remote Control
If you’re like me then you’re probably sick to death sick of losing the remote in your couch cushions. If so, then try turning your couch cushions into a remote. This pillow features a 6-in-1 remote control, with codes for over 500 AV devices. It’s a neat idea, although we have to wonder if laying on it will change channels—or imprint remote symbols into your face. Besides control for up to six devices, the pillow has a power-saving shutoff feature and a wide-range transmitter with infrared LED built in
The Clicker pairs two of our favorite pastimes: Beer and the remote. Because this handy gadget has a built-in bottle opener, you will never have to scramble or use your teeth again. Another perk is that it can actually control the TV, a Blu-ray player, a set-top box, and more. The Clicker has preset codes for up to 800 different AV devices—and can actually control up to nine of them at once.
Ninja Remote Stealth Television Gadget & IR Jammer
Annoyed that your significant other dominates the remote? Try tripping him or her up with this nifty little gadget. The Ninja Remote can control almost any TV, allowing you to tweak the volume or flip channels on the down-low, from up to 400 feet away. It also puts your finger on the “Bomb” button, which can cause the TV to change channels and volume at random for anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes. Exorcist? Nope, it’s just the Ninja Remote
Micro Spy Remote
This remote is similar to the Ninja, except it’s a lot smaller and cheaper. In just seconds, you can take control of almost any TV and cheese off family members, bar patrons, co-workers, and everyone else within watching distance. Palm it in your hand and you’ll have covert control over a TV’s power, channels, volume and the mute feature
Art Lebedev Pultius
Russian designer Art Lebedev is known for his creativity, which he’s extended to this super-long remote control. Resembling a strip of candy buttons, the remote features a mere 103 buttons, which can navigate users through 399 channels. If you have a few extras, there are manual channel up/down buttons and volume controls at the bottom. Don’t start planning who to poke with this 20-inch remote, though; it doesn’t look like Lebedev ever plans to mass-market the device
Mickey Mouse Remote
Disney fans would probably love to wrap their hands around this device. It includes Mickey’s iconic ears and a base that looks like his shoes. The two buttons on his pants can control power, as well as what appears to be a set-top box. If you’re that into Mickey, you’ll probably also appreciate that this thing can talk, spouting off nine different phrases. Good luck finding one, though; when it was released back in 2010, only limited quantities were sold – in Japan.
Think Geek IRIS 9000 Voice Control for Siri
It’s not your average remote, which is one of the main reasons this device is on our list. The included handheld remote can trigger the iPhone 4’s Siri feature from across the room, while that portable is docked. Why? The more important question is why not – or maybe even how much? After all, besides hands-free conversations with Siri, this option adds a little sci-fi into your home base.
Crestron UFO Waterproof Wireless LCD Remote
It’s not as funny as some of our other entries – unless you think round is funny. However, the real hook on the UFO is not that it’s shaped like its namesake, but that it’s waterproof for use in the hot tub and/or pool areas. From either location, this fun, floatable saucer can provide control over connected entertainment systems, as well as lighting, thermostats, security, and more. Other features include a 2.8-inch active-matrix color LCD display and 2.4GHz RF wireless technology. Add in the optional Extended Range RF Wireless Gateway and the unit promises a reach of up to 200 feet indoors and 1,000 feet outside.