The Lenovo™ 500 Multimedia Controller: Controlling Today’s Digital Home

Rapid, sophisticated evolution in home entertainment has led to a challenge few foresaw: the need for an innovative device that integrates, controls and ultimately makes the most of all that change.

Last year, the explosive growth of Internet-enabled smart TVs officially outpaced their conventional TV counterparts, with more than half of TV sets shipped being smart TVs.1 Meanwhile, the meteoric rise of 4K TVs has some analysts predicting that as many as one-third of US homes will own a 4K TV by 2019.2 Today’s consumers want a complete multimedia experience that makes the most of large-screen displays, high-performance PCs, interactive technologies and everything the Internet and content providers have to offer.

A recent survey Lenovo showed that almost half of respondents connect to an external display at least weekly.3 However, this new aggregation of displays, computers and devices creates a frustrating challenge around controlling them, often forcing consumers to use different devices to tap into different contents and functions.

 

Swipe and Surf

Using feedback from those same frustrated consumers, our team built the Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller, a state-of-the-art wireless keyboard and mouse that fits in the palm of your hand. The controller dramatically improves not just the way homeowners connect to their PCs, the web and displays, but re-defines the very notion of how a compact, Human Interface Device (HID) should look, feel and function. 

Let’s start with the Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller’s keyboard, with its entire area doubling as a Windows® 10 gesture-supported, multi-touch capacitive touchpad – meaning that users can type like a normal keypad with their thumbs or glide their fingers across the surface like a touchpad.

No more having to awkwardly hold the controller while shifting your hands to reach the keys or touchpad. The Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller is designed for your thumbs to reach every key on the keypad as well as control the touchpad – all with one grip. Its distinctive design means users can employ the swipes, gestures and clicks typically associated with navigating menus, surfing content and opening applications. Yet, they can also use their thumbs to rapid-fire message family and friends, key in search terms, enter passwords and more. 

Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller’s multi-point capacitive touchpad with integrated keyboard

Rigorous user testing of early controller concepts resulted in design features that include a conveniently curved backbone for ease of pickup from flat surfaces (hint: coffee and end tables), an absence of sharp edges for a comfortable grip and keys that are easily accessible to both thumbs.

 

Designed for the Commander’s Seat

Let’s not forget that many home theaters occupy entire rooms rather than a single corner of the family room – meaning there can be a large distance between the audience and controller to the display. And even when a home lacks a home theater, these connected displays are likely situated at one end of the large, open floor plan designs that are increasingly popular with today's homebuyers.

The result? Where the typical 32.8 ft (10 m) range of conventional wireless remotes won’t suffice, the Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller offers up to 65.6 ft (20 m)4 of wireless range.

We should add that users can even take the sleek and lightweight 0.31 lbs (141 g)5 Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller to the office with them and use it for large-screen or even dual-screen presentations.

We don’t anticipate any slowdown in the digital and architectural evolution of the modern home. Lenovo’s goal in anticipating and occasionally mitigating these changes remains the same: to listen and learn from customers to co-create solutions for their needs.

Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller starts at $54.99, available beginning in March 2017.6 All Lenovo products are available on www.lenovo.com.6

 

Specs for the Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller can be found at http://bit.ly/2i3jf9Q

Full 2017 CES press kit at http://news.lenovo.com/presskits/ces2017.htm.

Watch how customer insights inspired Lenovo’s latest innovations at CES 2017: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EIoPzpwS4uM

Discover more at www.lenovo.com/ces.

 

1 “Smart TV Surge: More than Half of TVs Shipped Globally in Q1 Were Smart,” IHS Markit, June 2016: http://news.ihsmarkit.com/press-release/technology/smart-tv-surge-more-half-tvs-shipped-globally-q1-2016-were-smart-ihs-says

2 “One-Third of U.S. Households Will Have 4K TVs in 2019,” IHS Markit, Dec 2015: http://news.ihsmarkit.com/press-release/technology/one-third-us-households-will-have-4k-tvs-2019-ihs-says

3 Based on Lenovo’s 2016 survey of 1,352 global respondents.

4 Signal interference may impact wireless performance range

5 Weight includes two AAA batteries, not including dongle

6 Prices do not include tax or shipping or options and are subject to change without notice; additional terms and conditions apply. Reseller prices may vary. On-shelf dates may vary by geography and products may only be available in selected markets. All offers subject to availability. Lenovo reserves the right to alter product offerings, features and specifications at any time without notice.

 

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