Tuesday, 23 April 2013

IR Blaster?

In bygone years a number of mobile phones had an IR blaster on the edge of the handset. This was used back then mainly for file transfers allowing you to to send a picture, for example, to your buddy's phone from yours.

Since then things have changed and IR (Infrared) is no longer seen as a viable option for file transfer due to things like bluetooth (which is much faster), e-mail (which has been helped thanks to increased mobile internet speed) and various other apps (think Dropbox, Whatsapp? and Skypath). Sadly this saw IR blasters being made all but extinct with only a small selection of handsets using IR.

Thankfully IR seems to have made a bit of a comeback in recent years with several phones (notably the Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One X) including them and seeing their uses, not in file transfers but in every day situations.

If you look around your house you will almost certainly have a device that uses "IR", notably your television which uses an Infrared Remote to change the channels. Having just recently noticed my remote is now snapped in two (thanks to my wonderful partner...sigh women!) we're now using my phone to turn over the television. The IR "blaster" works just like a TV remote and with the right apps you'd never need the remote again (great if your family has a remote hog).

Sure it's not ideal but it beats not being able to turn the television over for what reason is a real pain in the backside so this can save you from needing to buy a new TV or getting up and changing the channel manually (do new TV's even let you do that?)

We imagine that the inclusion of "IR Blasters" will become a popular feature over the next few years, especially when you consider that companies like Sony and Samsung also produce TV's which allow them to sell you an in-built remote in their phones for their television sets. A genius move by companies trying to secure cross-product loyalty.


  1. This is one of the main reasons I keep my n95 8GB, as it's able to download remotes of many devices with irRemote program, since 2007. For sure when people start using this in their S4s every one will say how advanced it is(but forget it is 6 years late). After being a heavy Symbian user, Android dissapoints me in many aspects.

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