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Topic:
Anyone heard of AVA Remote?
This thread has 36 replies. Displaying posts 1 through 15.
Post 1 made on Thursday June 23, 2022 at 12:04
gwstudios
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Got a call from them yesterday. It's an all touch screen Android device, shaped like a universal remote that runs almost every Google Play store app, including RTI and Crestron. I think only C4 is not supported right now.

This looks pretty cool. Going to do some homework on this and develop some graphics / templates for this (RTI). Just wanted to see if anyone else had heard of it.

Here's a link if you want to check it out: [Link: ava.com]

Update: Been working on an RTI template for this remote, and I will create one for Crestron next. An alternate version will contain a "demo" style layout so you can view a bunch of sample pages.

Update #2: Received my remote and uploaded the RTI demo file. These are new images from actual screenshots. Made some changes to the UI because it needed to be smaller than the native screen resolution.

Last edited by gwstudios on June 29, 2022 12:46.
Post 2 made on Thursday June 23, 2022 at 14:04
BHuey1969
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Sony rep here is also a rep for this company. I saw it at a local rep show. TBH, this remote is way overpriced for what you get. It's basically a smart phone that doesn't make calls, and I think it's supposed to be $1200 or so retail.
OP | Post 3 made on Thursday June 23, 2022 at 15:46
gwstudios
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Well, it's like an Android / iPod Touch that can run most apps. That price sounds about right, but you have to consider this is designed for RTI and Crestron dealers and is about the same price as a TSR-310 or T4X.

Crestron seems to have zero product available, and the 310s are impossible to get right now. RTI has a lot of stock, but this is geared towards the high end client looking for a minimalist remote. I think you underestimate how picky some of these people are with what they like to have sitting on their end tables. I'll never understand it, but I have seen it a hundred times.

Bust out a sample remote at a client meeting and the wife (or interior designer) says she doesn't want that thing on her table.

Personally, I want to run RTI on it, but I can also take it out to the party deck, connect directly to Bluetooth out there with this remote, and stream Pandora / Spotify direct. I can also use a URL scheme to jump directly to other apps like MyQ, Nest, etc..

I don't think the price will be a major issue for the higher end clients.

Last edited by gwstudios on June 25, 2022 13:35.
Post 4 made on Thursday June 23, 2022 at 16:20
goldenzrule
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Wand style remotes that are all touchscreen SUCK.  If you are using it for music, use your phone.  If you want to control a TV, get a real wand remote and not a phone turned into a remote.  I believe it retails for $1300 if I remember correctly.

Also, its not that it doesn't support C4, its that C4 changed something on the backend to block them, and honestly, I don't blame them.  Ava was created by an ex C4 guy and the original creator of Neeo, which was sold to C4.  So they took the money and created a competing remote to the one C4 bought.  Why would they think C4 would just let them use it with their system?
OP | Post 5 made on Thursday June 23, 2022 at 17:17
gwstudios
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Pretty sure this isn't geared for C4 users and that canned UI they use on everything, but that makes sense. I have been using all touch screen in my house for a decade now. All iPhones and iPads, except for one T2X in our master suite. I even repurposed a few iPod Touches just to have in a pinch.

I'm so used to no hard buttons, I don't even care anymore, but I know some people still love them. NEEO was a great idea, just no IR learning or custom graphics.

This remote is so different. Open sandbox in RTI with regard to graphics and pretty good customization in Crestron (even with limited Smart Graphics).

I am ordering an AVA and I'll post a review / video at some point.
Post 6 made on Friday June 24, 2022 at 09:16
goldenzrule
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On June 23, 2022 at 17:17, gwstudios said...
Pretty sure this isn't geared for C4 users and that canned UI they use on everything, but that makes sense. I have been using all touch screen in my house for a decade now. All iPhones and iPads, except for one T2X in our master suite. I even repurposed a few iPod Touches just to have in a pinch.

I'm so used to no hard buttons, I don't even care anymore, but I know some people still love them. NEEO was a great idea, just no IR learning or custom graphics.

This remote is so different. Open sandbox in RTI with regard to graphics and pretty good customization in Crestron (even with limited Smart Graphics).

I am ordering an AVA and I'll post a review / video at some point.

You are the exception, not the rule.  You live and breath touch screens with the work you do.  The majority of people do not do well with an all touch screen wand style, nor should they.  Its a horrible experience when controlling TVs.  If you want a touch screen remote to control your music, I get it, but save your money and use your phone that you already have (people in general).  It is literally an android phone stripped of phone software and I'd assume hardware, packed into a wand shell.  It needs to be about $700 cheaper for it to make any sense in my personal opinion and even then, I would never use it for any TV use and still would just use my phone over it.
Post 7 made on Friday June 24, 2022 at 14:04
Daniel Tonks
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I really like the concept, but it seems like there was a missed opportunity to put SOME buttons somewhere.
OP | Post 8 made on Friday June 24, 2022 at 15:14
gwstudios
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On June 24, 2022 at 14:04, Daniel Tonks said...
I really like the concept, but it seems like there was a missed opportunity to put SOME buttons somewhere.

Yeah, I think the idea was to not have it look similar to NEEO, hence the double tall 3.85:1 ratio screen. I am developing UIs for both Crestron and RTI that will work the respective apps as we speak.

Sounds like there is some drama between AVA / NEEO / C4

Last edited by gwstudios on June 25, 2022 13:36.
OP | Post 9 made on Friday June 24, 2022 at 15:20
gwstudios
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On June 24, 2022 at 09:16, goldenzrule said...
You are the exception, not the rule. †You live and breath touch screens with the work you do. †The majority of people do not do well with an all touch screen wand style, nor should they. †Its a horrible experience when controlling TVs. †If you want a touch screen remote to control your music, I get it, but save your money and use your phone that you already have (people in general). †It is literally an android phone stripped of phone software and I'd assume hardware, packed into a wand shell. †It needs to be about $700 cheaper for it to make any sense in my personal opinion and even then, I would never use it for any TV use and still would just use my phone over it.

I think the battery life and sheer design simplicity is what will help it sell. I have one on the way as of today so I can upload and test in the real world. It's a niche product, but I don't see a lot of consumers buying this.

NEEO was consumer based, AVA is probably looking for RTI / Crestron dealers. Not even sure if AMX is still breathing, and I'm also not sure if the Savant app could run on this either.
Post 10 made on Friday June 24, 2022 at 17:23
goldenzrule
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On June 24, 2022 at 15:20, gwstudios said...
I think the battery life and sheer design simplicity is what will help it sell. I have one on the way as of today so I can upload and test in the real world. It's a niche product, but I don't see a lot of consumers buying this.

NEEO was consumer based, AVA is probably looking for RTI / Crestron dealers. Not even sure if AMX is still breathing, and I'm also not sure if the Savant app could run on this either.

I think the niche would have to be incredibly small.  Limited to people willing to spend $1300 for a wand remote to control some music, lighting, maybe some thermostats, maybe some shades.  I just can't see many people using a wand style remote dedicated for those purposes.  As a TV remote, no buttons makes it a non starter.  I have a few Neeos in my house and hated them until we cut the cord and started streaming.  However, if the did not have the hard buttons for directional buttons, select, menu, back, and volume, I would have trashed them long ago.  Hard buttons are a requirement for TV usage IMHO
OP | Post 11 made on Friday June 24, 2022 at 18:42
gwstudios
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On June 24, 2022 at 17:23, goldenzrule said...
I think the niche would have to be incredibly small. †Limited to people willing to spend $1300 for a wand remote to control some music, lighting, maybe some thermostats, maybe some shades. †I just can't see many people using a wand style remote dedicated for those purposes. †As a TV remote, no buttons makes it a non starter. †I have a few Neeos in my house and hated them until we cut the cord and started streaming. †However, if the did not have the hard buttons for directional buttons, select, menu, back, and volume, I would have trashed them long ago. †Hard buttons are a requirement for TV usage IMHO

I thought the same thing until I started getting emails from my RTI, and quite a few Crestron customers asking about a UI specifically for this remote. The Crestron shortage may push some sales.

That is how I found out about it in the first place. Never heard of it until a couple days ago.
Post 12 made on Saturday June 25, 2022 at 10:15
ichbinbose
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I have one and a client has a couple.
The pro is that it runs your control system of choice (except c4) AND it runs every ip controllable device that you have in your system including ring and nest. Built in microphone and speaker.
So if you really like a native app for a product, such as Kaleidescape vs the control system interface it allows you to jump from app to app quickly and easily.
For me personally a few issues i have are battery life and the size of the screen. I think the remote should be at least 30% larger.
The phone vs remote debate. Well the AVA. Is easier to use one handed. If you hand it to a guest you donít have to worry about phone calls, texts or emails.
Itís definitely a generational thing in my experience so far as my installer canít get his head around this argument either, yet when it was presented to the first client their response was that it was the ultimate remote! So it just depends in the end.
A very cool feature to me is that itís not control system agnostic.
OP | Post 13 made on Saturday June 25, 2022 at 12:33
gwstudios
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On June 25, 2022 at 10:15, ichbinbose said...
I have one and a client has a couple.
The pro is that it runs your control system of choice (except c4) AND it runs every ip controllable device that you have in your system including ring and nest. Built in microphone and speaker.
So if you really like a native app for a product, such as Kaleidescape vs the control system interface it allows you to jump from app to app quickly and easily.
For me personally a few issues i have are battery life and the size of the screen. I think the remote should be at least 30% larger.
The phone vs remote debate. Well the AVA. Is easier to use one handed. If you hand it to a guest you donít have to worry about phone calls, texts or emails.
Itís definitely a generational thing in my experience so far as my installer canít get his head around this argument either, yet when it was presented to the first client their response was that it was the ultimate remote! So it just depends in the end.
A very cool feature to me is that itís not control system agnostic.

Thanks for the input. There is a lot I want to try out with this remote, and I currently have 5 different home automation processors / controllers online right now. I do a lot of driver / product testing, so I am interested in seeing how this all plays out.

People who already own them are generally happy from what I have read, so that's good.
Post 14 made on Saturday June 25, 2022 at 14:19
goldenzrule
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On June 25, 2022 at 10:15, ichbinbose said...
I have one and a client has a couple.
The pro is that it runs your control system of choice (except c4) AND it runs every ip controllable device that you have in your system including ring and nest. Built in microphone and speaker.
So if you really like a native app for a product, such as Kaleidescape vs the control system interface it allows you to jump from app to app quickly and easily.
For me personally a few issues i have are battery life and the size of the screen. I think the remote should be at least 30% larger.
The phone vs remote debate. Well the AVA. Is easier to use one handed. If you hand it to a guest you donít have to worry about phone calls, texts or emails.
Itís definitely a generational thing in my experience so far as my installer canít get his head around this argument either, yet when it was presented to the first client their response was that it was the ultimate remote! So it just depends in the end.
A very cool feature to me is that itís not control system agnostic.

I am not saying clients will or will not like it, but I have heard from clients for years in regards to touch screen remotes how much they want one, but once they have them, complaints come in.  Had a few with the older MX1200 from URC, which had much more in terms of usable hard buttons.  The MX5000/TRC1280 remote, aside from it just being a bad, slow remote, had many complaints on just usage ease of use.  More recently Neeo had similar complaints.  All of these remotes had the basic navigation buttons, channel up/down buttons and volume buttons, and still I heard complaints.  We will just have to agree to disagree on this, I just don't feel that a remote with no hard buttons has any place in a system controlling TVs.  Again, if your sole purpose is automation functions or maybe music, ok.  I still would prefer to use my phone and save the money, but I'd let clients decide what their wallet wants to spend.
Post 15 made on Saturday June 25, 2022 at 15:34
buzz
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Many of the younger folk are looking for excuses to fondle their phone and hard buttons seem old fashioned. Older folk tend to like some hard buttons because it is easier to give commands and observe the onscreen responses. If the goal is simply to watch TV, the cable company voice remote is a sufficient option for many.

I like icon based TV channel selection. Touching 'NBC' does everything necessary to watch NBC. There is no need for any visual feedback. It's trivial for the user to change surround modes if they want or the usual surround mode could be incorporated in the 'NBC' icon. Volume control hard buttons can usually be implemented in the control system.
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