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Breakthrough Touchscreen Handheld Remote Gives Users Total Control Over Home Entertainment System

NEW ORLEANS - Sept. 11, 1998 - Today at CEDIA Expo '98, Philips Electronics introduced the Pronto Intelligent Remote Control - a learning universal remote that through a handheld touchscreen lets users easily manage and tailor their home entertainment systems. Pronto is simple to set-up, customize and operate through a dynamic display and is fully expandable for changing home entertainment environments. Pronto will be on display during CEDIA at the Philips Electronics booth #2455 in New Orleans at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

"Feedback from our closest customers, including trade and end-users, confirmed a market need for a sophisticated, yet intuitive and elegant solution for home theater control," said Edson Farqui, General Manager of Philips Digital Entertainment Group. "With Pronto we've re-defined remote controls, expanding the category with a handheld remote that addresses the consumer's needs, while being a fun tool to use."

Measuring 5.4 x 3.6 inches and weighing 8.8 ounces, Pronto brings together total home entertainment control, complete command customization, an intuitive interface and a unique, ergonomical design. It can replace all other remotes in the home, resulting in less clutter in the living room and less confusion for the user.

Pronto is designed to offer flexibility and convenience to the consumer. It features easily accessible hard-keys for the basic functions-channel up/down, mute and volume control. All other functions are accessed through the large LCD touchscreen that can be backlit. Its simplicity and design eliminates confusion for the user.

Tailored and Expandable to Individual Needs
Pronto combines all of the complex functions of button-dependent devices into an easy-to-program touchscreen that is fully customizable, making setting up the home theater as easy as a touch of the finger. Pronto comes pre-programmed with common A/V component commands and IR codes for a select number of home theater devices. The remote can be customized as new A/V components are added, by labeling and addressing virtual buttons in the control menus. Through editable macro buttons on the LCD, users can interactively create a combination of commands that control the home entertainment system. With one megabyte of memory, the user is able to store a vast number of macro commands in Pronto -- offering the most memory available on a remote control today. Pronto's memory allows programming to be saved even if the battery is removed. The optional accessory kit includes a recharge package, A/C adapter and rechargeable battery pack.

Dynamic Display and Elegant Design
The elegant design combines the flexibility of a LCD with the comfort of direct-access buttons, making Pronto simple but flexible. Providing a larger display than most handheld remote controls in its category, Pronto easily manages A/V components via the touchscreen LCD that measures 3 x 2.3 inches. Familiar icons and a smartly designed layout allow anyone to quickly and easily execute routine commands. There are seven different preset or changeable modes that allow for maximum flexibility for even the highest performing systems.

The layout eases the process of labeling buttons by featuring an auto-zoom, virtual keyboard that enlarges for easy viewing and touch control. Pronto is designed with an animated interface so that icons will slide across the screen into the next menu command when touched. Pronto's handheld design can be used with one or two hands or while setting on a tabletop. It can be used in the dark due to its automatic light sensing and back-light illumination.

Ready for Future Home Electronic Components
As new technologies are implemented into future consumer electronic devices, Pronto can easily be expanded to meet the user's needs and requirements. New A/V components can be added to Pronto through the simple customization process and through the two-way RS232 communication serial port that uploads new configuration files.

Total Control Over Home Entertainment System
The remote can be operated from an approximate distance of 33 feet or 10 meters. Pronto receives infrared (IR) feedback from electronic components, including TVs, VCRs, DVD players, CD players, cable boxes, laser disc players, DSS systems, AM/FM tuners and a variety of other A/V devices. It can also control other devices in the home environment that accept IR signals, including lights, curtains and even the fireplace.

Availability and Pricing
Pronto will be sold through select audio and video retailers throughout the U.S. at a suggested retail price of $399. The recharge package is sold separately with a MSRP of $80. Both will be available by October 1998.

Customer Support and Information
Pronto is covered by a one-year warranty. Customers can obtain general information and assistance regarding Pronto by calling the Philips' toll-free Call Center at 1-888-486-6272, or e-mail Philips via the web site,

About Philips
Royal Philips Electronics is one of the world's largest electronics companies with sales of $39 billion in 1997 alone. With 262,500 employees in more than 60 countries, it is well known for its activities in the lighting, semiconductor and components, consumer products, professional products and systems areas including software and services. Philips is quoted on the NYSE, London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and other stock exchanges, and is the world's leader in lighting, color TV equipment and electric shavers. Philips maintains a site on the World Wide Web at

For more information contact:
Philips Electronics
Marty Gordon
[email protected]
Brodeur Porter Novelli
Cara Broglia
[email protected]

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