updated 01:40 pm EDT, Thu August 18, 2011
Android smartphone can be used as a remote
ThinkFlood has moved beyond beta and has officially released the Android version for its Redeye app. Using it, Android smartphone owners can now control diverse devices, including home theaters, set top boxes, lighting systems and air conditioners. The app (free, Android Market) is used in conjunction with ThinkFlood's RedEye hardware to bridge the gap between a Wi-Fi device and IR-based receivers.
ThinkFlood originally released its RedEye hardware in late 2009 with Apple iOS compatibility. Using it, a user could control any IR transceiver equipped device such as a TV, receiver, or cable box. Last year, the company introduced its mini IR adapter, which plugged into the headphone jack of an iPhone to provide remote control in a small form factor.
In May, the company expanded its remote control capabilities with the release of the RedEye Pro home automation controller. This enabled iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or computer owners to extend their reach and control their home's ventilation system, lights, sprinklers, security system, and other connected systems. Also in May, ThinkFlood released a beta version of its app that supported Android devices. It was constrained by limited Android device support.
The official Android version has greater compatibility than the beta version, but there are still several limitations. The Android app will only work with networked RedEye hardware, the RedEye (WiFi) and RedEye Pro. It will not work with the mini. Because Android doesn't fully support peer-to-peer Wi-Fi networking, the hardware must first be configured using a PC or a Mac.
Certain HTC phones, such as the Evo 4G, Aria, Desire, myTouch Slide 3G, and Hero, also don't support multicast. Because the RedEye hardware uses Apple's Bonjour (Zeroconf) for network discovery, the app must be manually configured with the IP address of the RedEye hardware.