AAPL Stock: 117.81 ( -0.22 )

Printed from

New Apple remote controls Macs, iPods, iPhones

updated 01:30 pm EDT, Tue October 20, 2009

Mimics iPod nano design

Alongside new iMacs, MacBooks and other major hardware releases, Apple has quietly introduced a new system remote. The device is primarily meant for Macs, allowing users to bring up the Front Row interface for music, photo, video and DVD playback. It can also be used in a limited fashion with iPods and iPhones, controlling music, slideshows and video.

The redesigned remote borrows the look of the fifth-generation iPod nano, switching to a clickwheel. The Play/Pause button has also been moved out of the center, and now sits alongside the Menu toggle.

iPods and iPhones must be plugged into an iPod Universal Dock, due to the requirement of an IR receiver. Similarly, the only supported Macs are those with IR receivers, built in 2005 or later. The new remote can be ordered from Apple for $19, but currently has a two- to four-week shipping time.

by MacNN Staff



  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    When you're spitting video from a dock, does Apple now show the menus on the screens? That was one of my friends main complaints with using the standard Apple video cable with their iPods and trying to use a remote. You couldn't see what you were selecting, and so it was basically useless until you got something running.

  1. slider

    Joined: Dec 1969


    If they only....

    Made this with a scroll wheel like on the iPod instead of a directional navigator pad Apple really would have a killer remote.

  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Why infrared?

    Why infrared? If it was bluetooth, it could control all Apple machines, like the Mac Pros. It's bizarre that I can control my $4000 Apple workstation with a Nintendo Wiimote and not an Apple device!

  1. dfmz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    comment title

    The iPhone doesn't have an IR receiver (that I know of). How does the remote work?

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    RE: Why infrared?

    Oh, bluetooth would be sweet. Just think, you could then hide your mac mini/appletv behind some doors or in a drawer and still be able to control it.

    Does the AppleTV have bluetooth?

    Maybe bluetooth would have made it bigger (nah, can't be that, bluetooth headsets are real small). Maybe because it would have to wake up and sleep, re-pair, and, as such, at times wouldn't be all that responsive.

    What would be best would be both. That way it would work depending on which you have.

  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969



    My bluetooth keyboard never needs to re-pair with my Mac Pro after sleeping or anything. In fact the keyboard can actually wake up my Mac Pro, so that's not it. Wait a minute.... isn't there a licensing charge for bluetooth where proprietary infrared is free?

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented