Let's put aside what the Palm Pilot does best (organizer), and just focus on the remote control portion. The main reason why I purchased the Palm was for the remote control capabilities. Balancing my bank account will certainly be easier having purchase the Palm, not because of it's functionality, but because it's much less than the Pronto! :)
To put it in the same category as the Rotel and the Sony would be inaccurate. Before I purchased the Palm, I bought the Rotel. Very nice remote, but it was NOT customizable. Everything is hard coded from the buttons to the titles on the buttons. This is the same as the Sony as well. I don't know about for other people, but for me that is a MAJOR pain. Who wants to remember that the channel up key for their Home Theater really means THX mode? This is why the Palm is definately not in that category.
The other reason is that those remotes are not upgradable. No patches or enhancements can be 'downloaded' onto the unit. Another reason why the Palm should not be in that category.
As far as how pleasant the use goes, the Palm is definately easier to use over the Rotel, and the Sony! The Sony requires two hands to use, and is the size of a small laptop. The rotel is a nice size, but the problem there is that when compared to the Palm, is much heavier. The Palm was designed to be carried around and held in your hand for long periods of times. Also, the rotel touch screen is far inferior to the Palm's. The Rotel touch screen has physical areas (buttons) on the LCD screen which are activated with the slightest touch. The Palm's LCD does not have these areas. The entire screen is capable. And the Palm requires a slight point to initiate the button. Not like the Rotel, which is initiated every time you touch the screen. As far as the Omniremote interface, it can be totally customized, from the size of the button to the title of the button. You make the interface and remote so it is pleasant to your specifications.
I checked out the CCF files, and I must say...those are VERY cool. The Palm can't do that....YET. That is another reason why I believe the Palm is one of the best remotes. A new slick interface, has the possibility to be a download away.
The Palm Pilot certainly as it stands now, does not have the slick interface of the Pronto. But, functionally, it can do the same things. Yes the Pronto is easier for the average person to use, and more pleasant to work with. I don't argue with that one bit. I also don't argue that the Pronto is currently a better remote. All I'm saying is that the Palm can do everything you would want a remote to do and much more. Does it have all the bells and whistles of the Pronto? No, not yet. Will it? Maybe, maybe not, but it has the potential. But when you get down to the nuts and bolts of things, it will control your system as good as any other remote. And it will do it for a price which the wife won't have THAT hard of a time agreeing with...(once you convince her that it's not a remote control!)..another reason why I went with the Palm :)