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New Capabilities for ZigBee RF4CE Remotes
Push-messaging and find-me apps added to RF remote control arsenal.
Posted by Daniel Tonks on September 10, 2010 at 8:31 AM
RC News Story
GreenPeak Technologies, a fables semiconductor company, has added two new capabilities to their ZigBee RF4CE controller chips, all without impacting battery life. “Push messaging” allows for on-remote applications such as gaming, interactive voting, personal messages and reminders, real-time sports results or stock information, while the “find-me” button can help users locate their missing remotes from, for example, a button on the front of the television.

Although RF-enabled remotes are still far from commonplace compared to infrared, there are advantages to the technology – which is one of the reasons for the whole RF4CE standard. The complete press release is included below.

“Push-Messaging” and “Find-Me” FOR remote controls

GreenPeak adds push-messaging and FIND-ME Apps for standard RF4CE remote controls without impacting Battery life

Utrecht, Netherlands – 7 September 2010 – GreenPeak Technologies, a leading fabless semiconductor company, today announced the addition of the smart “push messaging” and “find-me” apps to its current offering of communication controllers for ZigBee RF4CE remote controls. GreenPeak’s unique ultra low power synchronization technique allows both applications to operate with a minimal impact on battery life thereby allowing the remote control battery life to reach more than ten years.

RF remote controls provide two-way high-speed communication and do not require line of sight as the signal transmits through cabinets, obstacles, walls and floors, contrary to infra-red based remote controls.

Push-messaging allows for a variety of new remote control capabilities including tele-voting and gaming, personal messages and reminders, real-time sports results, stock information and residential sensor network monitoring. Push-messaging also enables operators to create new opportunities for advertising revenues via server initiated commercial push messages on the consumers’ remote control.

Find-me enables users to simply push a “find-me” button on the TV or STB that results in the remote generating an alarm, beep or blinking light, to make it easy to find, even when it is out of sight. No more lost remote controls.

GreenPeak’s implementation manages this functionality on top of ZigBee RF4CE with only minimal impact on energy use – resulting in a factor 10 improvement in battery-life compared to currently existing two-way remote controls.

“For a long time, the current infra-red remote control has essentially not changed,” said Cees Links, CEO of GreenPeak Technologies. “But today more advanced communication capabilities enable new apps and increased functionality.” Cees Links continues: “By using GreenPeak's revolutionary technology, these new low power push-messaging and find-me apps provide increased functionality and improved user experience without affecting battery life.”

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