Rethinking the Remote

A new kind of remote control scraps the buttons in favor of motion-sensitive navigation

The Loop

Satoshi

Control Freak

The Loop lets you change channels and settings with a wave and a click.Hillcrest Labs

Three hundred channels and a DVR full of recorded shows, and you´re still sifting through it all with a controller straight out of the ´80s. That´s why Hillcrest Labs designed the Loop, a remote with nary a number on it. Instead, a button brings up an onscreen guide, which you navigate with a scroll wheel. To select what you want to do-browse recordings, change settings-just wave the remote around to move an onscreen cursor through a series of intuitive, icon-driven menus. Accelerometers inside the controller detect where you´re pointing (a technology the company calls Freespace). Hillcrest expects to sign deals with set-top-box makers later this year, so you could get one with your next cable box. Now, if only they could make it easier to find in the seat cushions.

THE LOOP

SIZE: 5 inches across

WEIGHT: 5 ounces

BATTERY LIFE: About three months

AVAILABLE: Late this year