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Video CES 2014: HAL© is a Voice- and Gesture-Operated Remote (Video) 46

According to the company's website, "HAL© is the future of television and media management. Using proprietary gesture and voice control technology..." In this case, HAL© stands for “Human Algorithm LTE.” It looks like it's a lot safer than the original HAL 9000, anyway. Is it ready for prime time? If their CES demo is any indication, not quite. They say HAL© is going to ship in the fall of 2014. The technology? They won't say beyond, "It's proprietary." Ah! Then it must be good, right? Another voice-operated remote control -- that's already available for purchase from major retailers -- is the Ivee Sleek. There are other HALs out there, too. Like this one. And this one, which is a home automation server that costs $2499.00 (& up). Anyway, the retail price for HAL(circle-C) is supposed to be $199 when it hits the streets. And even though it doesn't look like HAL© can do much that I can't already do with my Android phone, Skyvi, and a Chromecast, it might be fun to test and review once it's in production.

Maximillian (talking to device): “Remote reset tracking”. “Remote reset tracking”. Alright. Okay.

Timothy Lord: Maximillian, we are standing in front of a screen here at CES. I see a hovering hand on the screen. Can you explain that a little bit?

Maximillian: What you are looking at is HALTV. HALTV is a universal remote without the remote. We are trying to cut the cable between your TV and the six or seven remote controls that you have for your home entertainment system. So we’ve created a gesture and voice controlled interactive interface for your home entertainment system. As you can see, the hand is tracking my hand. I am not wearing any special hardware on my hand. There is nothing you have to lose or replace batteries for. And so what it does is it turns any TV into a smart TV as well as controls your entire home entertainment system, your set-top box, your DVD player, you name it. Mainly what you do with your TV is you watch TV. So let’s watch some TV. And here we have Cox Cable, here in Las Vegas. We can change channels up and down by swiping left and right.

Timothy Lord: What kind of sensors is it using to detect where your hand is?

Maximillian: Unfortunately, I can’t disclose the technical internals of it, as we are still kind in stealth mode until we launch in the fall. We will be launching in the fall this year, through the usual brick and mortar channels. MSRP for $199.99. You can also change the volume, you can mute the TV. As I said earlier, it is also voice controlled. The microphones are designed for a living room environment, not here at CES, so I apologize if it is a little sketchy. “Remote Change Channel ESPN”. Please work. “Remote Change Channel ESPN.” “Remote Change Channel ESPN”. There we go.

Timothy Lord: You got to be a loud talker in an environment like this.

Maximillian: In an environment like this, it does take a lot. And unfortunately, my voice is gone a little bit because I’ve been doing this for three days. But I imagine you can see it is a very natural interface to control your TV. You don’t need to learn any special gestures. In fact, the gestures are all customizable. You can take a video of yourself doing some hand motion and assign that to any function you like. In addition, the voice commands are also customizable. And so going back to our interface—“Remote Home Menu”. As I mentioned, it turns any TV into a smart TV. So what you are looking at here is our proprietary interface. You can swipe through the menus, it is a fully capable streaming device, using your typical streaming channels—Crackle, Google Plus. It also streams music Pandora, Spotify. We do photos, games.

Timothy Lord: Is there a pass-through so that other HDMI sources run through this box?

Maximillian: You can use it as a mainstream I-hub but what we are really trying to do is it to be a very easy integration. So we don’t want you to have to reinvent your whole system, you know, unplug everything, replug everything in. So it is designed to be just able to plug into your TV, and you don’t have to change anything. You can use it as a HDMI hub but you don’t have to. You can open your Facebook. Browse your Facebook right on your TV. As I said earlier, we will be debuting in this fall. Come see us at South By South West.

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CES 2014: HAL© is a Voice- and Gesture-Operated Remote (Video)

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I've noticed several design suggestions in your code.