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The Weemote manages to include a full set of features normally seen in advanced remotes. You can use a Code Search function if your device’s code isn’t initially apparent, and use the number blink back function to find out what it was. Quite a few brands are pre-programmed into the unit. You can remove specific favorite channel entries, or delete the codes entered for the TV or STB, or even reset the entire remote back to the factory default.
During testing I came upon an anomaly with my particular unit – the LED did not seem well attached to the circuit board. Often it would not light at all, or only erratically. For instance, on the volume buttons the LED would activate and stay lit as long as you pressed the buttons lightly, but if pressed a little firmer the LED would go out (although the signal continued to transmit). Sometimes the LED would not work at all when in the setup menu – making it difficult to tell what you were doing.
Great for kids, peace-of-mind for parents.
The Weemote comes with two pieces of documentation – a Quickstart Installation book, plus a Reference Guide. Unfortunately, the information contained in one book is not duplicated in the other, so you’ll always need to keep both handy. How to program a TV code is described in the quick guide, but the actual codes and how to perform any advanced programming is only covered in the main manual – which in turn doesn’t inform you on how to do basic stuff.
The Weemote is sold as an alternative to the V-Chip, a device built into all newer televisions that can disable viewing of specific programming exceeding the entered rating. However, the V-Chip can be difficult to configure and, as some programming is not rated, it’s not too reliable. With the Weemote, parents can choose exactly what channels to let their little tykes view – cutting a wide swath around mature stations. Made by Fobis Technologies, the Weemote has its own web site (http://www.weemote.com) which includes programming tips, lists of incompatible equipment and other ways to obtain support directly from the company. It’s a commendable project that only goes to strengthen the Weemote’s value.
Think of this remote as killing two birds with one stone. There’s nothing worse than coming home and discovering that your brand new learning remote was used as a hockey puck or drink coaster – the Weemote gives your kids their OWN remote control that they’ll want to use because of how easy it is to operate. And you, as a parent, can feel reasonably certain that what they’re watching isn’t undesirable. Fobis themselves caution that the Weemote isn’t an end-all solution: other channels can still be accessed directly from the television, or via a different remote. But with proper monitoring the Weemote can aid parents in providing safe television viewing, while giving their kids a remote they can truly call their own.
- Daniel Tonks (Remote Central)