Review: Logitech Harmony Elite

Manoj Ramesh Shastri - January 11, 2019

You may know the feeling. The living room table or couch is full of remote controls of various devices, and you always happen to pick up the wrong one. For years, Logitech’s Harmony remote controls have been a solution to this problem and have deservedly dominated the market. With everything trending towards smart homes, however, completely new devices came into play that didn’t exist years ago. The Logitech Harmony Elite is said to have responded to the emergence of the new technology​.​Smart remotes are the next way to simplify your smart home life, but how do you know what the best smart remote control is for your needs? One solid option is the ​Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control​. It connects upto 15 devices at once with a variety of customizable settings to match your individual needs, and doing so is a breeze​.​If you have your device names and model numbers, the set-up is a breeze, and once it connects to the Wi-Fi, the Harmony will even find some of the devices for you.Connecting to Bluetooth devices (such as gaming systems) require additional steps that can all be done through the remote. After communicating to the app on which device you’re using and syncing with the remote, the screen will lay out instructions for proper pairing.

Once you have all of your devices connected, you can customize it all to your individual needs. Even after the initial set-up, it’s easy to go back and make adjustments, either from the remote or from your smartphone. You can make custom favorite buttons on the touch screen so even odd or unusual equipment is accessible to you, no matter what your home set-up may be. If you’re worried that it may be too complicated to set-up, never fear—the app will guide you through the whole selection process, and give you command suggestions. After that, it’s as simple as touching the button you want, with no need to point at the device you want to control. But everything isn’t joyus here, ​The app is slow, confusing and not particularly pleasant to use. Of course, it can do its job, especially when it comes to configuring the remote. But in 2018, the fact that every setting requires seconds of waiting is very inconvenient. And no, it’s not synchronized with the Harmony remote control. This is something Logitech can fix with software updates.

The Harmony Elite is the first Logitech remote with buttons dedicated to smart home devices. The bottom of the remote control has two buttons for lights and two buttons for other devices, such as outlets. If a smart home device is set up, these buttons will automatically be assigned accordingly. If they’re not required for smart devices, you can assign them to whatever you’d like. Were able to test the smart home functions of the Harmony Elite with a Philips Hue light. In this case as well, the set up was very simple. You connect with the bridge and practically everything is set up like in the Hue app. You can turn on the lights as you would expect to: press the corresponding button for a little longer and they will turn on. Their new smart home compatibility makes sense and is very useful. In particular, lamps are far more convenient to operate than with conventional apps. We would describe the problems mentioned as early mishaps that should be fixed out over time with software updates.

Logitech has released a new feature with the Harmony Elite: the Alexa Skill, which allows you to operate the remote control with voice commands. The remote control itself isn’t really necessary for this, since the commands are processed through the Harmony Hub, and the entire set-up is done via the Harmony app.The idea behind the Harmony skill is interesting and funny at first, but in the long run it’s unnecessary. In its current state, the Skill is especially useless, because it just doesn’t work the way it should. We don’t understand how a command can be correctly understood before suddenly not being understood at all. Logitech needs to improve this quickly.
One of Logitech’s biggest strengths with all of their products is their product design. Logitech clearly takes the time and effort required in order to product some of the best looking products that are also functional. Their ability to create great looking and functional products is key when producing the Harmony series of remote controls as they need to look great sitting next to your expensive home entertainment setup but must also be easy to use, feel great in your hand and also perform all the tasks you need it to thankfully Logitech has once again delivered these requirements with the Harmony Elite remote control.

The Harmony Elite makes use of very high quality plastic and contains both gloss and soft touch plastic. The textured backing feels great in your hand as it keeps the remote control steadily placed and also doesn’t make your palm feel sweaty. The remote control has a slight curvature to it which really helps make the remote control comfortable to use and does not require you to have to keep moving the control in your hand in order to reach the buttons.The remote control comes equipped with a touchscreen at the top, allowing you to easily navigate and select your various activities that have been setup. It comes with a micro USB port concealed behind a rubber flap located at the bottom. Two metallic controls allow for charging (while this doesn’t allow for USB connectivity, you’ll need to directly plug in the remote to the cable for updates).
So finally we would recommend this smart remote for anyone who jiggles between multiple devices at their work or home. Some of the issues mentioned in the article are fixable with just minor software updates.

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