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Posted Jun 25, 2010
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Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

We recently switched our elderly mother to Uverse.  She has some dementia and has been struggling with the standard remote.  She really only needs a very simple remote, TV on/off, STB channel up/down, volume up/up more (she doesn't hear well).  The DVR function is totally out of her comprehension and effectively does not exist.

 

It appears that the Logitech Harmony remotes are the only viable options.  Can anyone tell me if the Harmony remotes can be programmed to do just these tasks, plus maybe simple channel number entry, and nothing else?  Can the extra keys be programmed so that they don't cause any problems if the are pushed accidentally? 

 

What she needs to a remote similar to a basic TV remote from 10-15 years ago.  Any advice?  Thanks.

We recently switched our elderly mother to Uverse.  She has some dementia and has been struggling with the standard remote.  She really only needs a very simple remote, TV on/off, STB channel up/down, volume up/up more (she doesn't hear well).  The DVR function is totally out of her comprehension and effectively does not exist.

 

It appears that the Logitech Harmony remotes are the only viable options.  Can anyone tell me if the Harmony remotes can be programmed to do just these tasks, plus maybe simple channel number entry, and nothing else?  Can the extra keys be programmed so that they don't cause any problems if the are pushed accidentally? 

 

What she needs to a remote similar to a basic TV remote from 10-15 years ago.  Any advice?  Thanks.

Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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Jun 25, 2010 10:33:25 PM
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The harmony remotes can be programmed any way you see fit. You can even delete certain buttons if you do not want that function. I have had mine since Christmas and love it.

The harmony remotes can be programmed any way you see fit. You can even delete certain buttons if you do not want that function. I have had mine since Christmas and love it.

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Jun 26, 2010 4:08:53 AM
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That's good to hear.  What model do you have?  Thanks.

That's good to hear.  What model do you have?  Thanks.

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Jun 26, 2010 11:41:20 PM
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nern1969 wrote:

The harmony remotes can be programmed any way you see fit. You can even delete certain buttons if you do not want that function. I have had mine since Christmas and love it.


I love my Logitech Harmony One, but I don't think it's what the OP is looking for.  The Harmony remotes have as many buttons as the Uverse remote, and trying to explain the touch-screen functions to an elderly individual with dementia sounds like a daunting challenge.

 

A quick search for simple universal remote for elderly revealed a lot of junk, but also possibly a few good leads.  One possibility is a Sony RM-EZ4.  It has the main buttons the OP is looking for, and in a nice size for less-than-nimble fingers.  The only caveat is I'm not sure it's Uverse compatible (the Sony website didn't indicate codes for a Cisco "cable box", just a Motorola cable box) so be prepared to return the item to point of purchase if you buy it. 


nern1969 wrote:

The harmony remotes can be programmed any way you see fit. You can even delete certain buttons if you do not want that function. I have had mine since Christmas and love it.


I love my Logitech Harmony One, but I don't think it's what the OP is looking for.  The Harmony remotes have as many buttons as the Uverse remote, and trying to explain the touch-screen functions to an elderly individual with dementia sounds like a daunting challenge.

 

A quick search for simple universal remote for elderly revealed a lot of junk, but also possibly a few good leads.  One possibility is a Sony RM-EZ4.  It has the main buttons the OP is looking for, and in a nice size for less-than-nimble fingers.  The only caveat is I'm not sure it's Uverse compatible (the Sony website didn't indicate codes for a Cisco "cable box", just a Motorola cable box) so be prepared to return the item to point of purchase if you buy it. 

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Jun 27, 2010 9:16:49 AM
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I have the Hormony 880, but there are a lot of different models to choose from. There are a lot of different features, but make sure you get one that suits what you need and that it is programmable with software.

I have the Hormony 880, but there are a lot of different models to choose from. There are a lot of different features, but make sure you get one that suits what you need and that it is programmable with software.

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Jun 27, 2010 9:38:52 AM
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This was the same problem I ran into when I tried to set my grandmother up with a Harmony.  The idea of the remote taking care of all the component switching is very useful, but the Harmony remotes are not ergonomically designed for this task.

 

My grandmother had a very difficult time with the remote, primarily because the buttons and printing are too small, and the quantity of buttons that were not used was confusing.  She also could not see or read the small display screen.  She eventually called me back over to take it back and set up her original three remotes (cable box, TV, and DVD).  She had written instructions for those that she understood.  The Harmony's also tend to go through batteries faster, and the battery compartment door on this one was too hard for her to open.

 

I wish Logitech would design a new remote around this purpose, with larger buttons and print, reduced button count, and no screen or soft buttons (another concept that confused her), but instead just a bright backlight for the text labels.

 

This was the same problem I ran into when I tried to set my grandmother up with a Harmony.  The idea of the remote taking care of all the component switching is very useful, but the Harmony remotes are not ergonomically designed for this task.

 

My grandmother had a very difficult time with the remote, primarily because the buttons and printing are too small, and the quantity of buttons that were not used was confusing.  She also could not see or read the small display screen.  She eventually called me back over to take it back and set up her original three remotes (cable box, TV, and DVD).  She had written instructions for those that she understood.  The Harmony's also tend to go through batteries faster, and the battery compartment door on this one was too hard for her to open.

 

I wish Logitech would design a new remote around this purpose, with larger buttons and print, reduced button count, and no screen or soft buttons (another concept that confused her), but instead just a bright backlight for the text labels.

 

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Jun 27, 2010 10:12:00 AM
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Might find something here.  Dunno if they work with UVerse tho.

Might find something here.  Dunno if they work with UVerse tho.

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Jun 27, 2010 1:56:26 PM
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My Father 85 has the same problems with the Harmony/ATT remote...  We need a Gitter bug like remote. Big buttons, glow in dark and a flat bottom (to be used on table)....

Im not Smart! The Voices in my Head are!!

My Father 85 has the same problems with the Harmony/ATT remote...  We need a Gitter bug like remote. Big buttons, glow in dark and a flat bottom (to be used on table)....

Im not Smart! The Voices in my Head are!!
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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Jun 27, 2010 3:30:20 PM
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uverse uses a new IR technology that employs High Data Rate IR Code Formats specifically Philips RCMM Codes.

 

You need to make sure that what ever you buy is capable of reproducing Phillips RCMM Codes.  There are previous posts about Logitech models that CAN'T produce Phillips RCMM Codes.  I'm just guessing but a lot of the after market remotes that offer bigger buttons use older technology that doesn't include Phillips RCMM Codes.

 

Even Logitech isn't very forthcoming on whether it supports Phillips RCMM Codes so unfortunately it could be a trial and error process.

uverse uses a new IR technology that employs High Data Rate IR Code Formats specifically Philips RCMM Codes.

 

You need to make sure that what ever you buy is capable of reproducing Phillips RCMM Codes.  There are previous posts about Logitech models that CAN'T produce Phillips RCMM Codes.  I'm just guessing but a lot of the after market remotes that offer bigger buttons use older technology that doesn't include Phillips RCMM Codes.

 

Even Logitech isn't very forthcoming on whether it supports Phillips RCMM Codes so unfortunately it could be a trial and error process.

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Jun 28, 2010 8:42:53 AM
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Most of the Harmonys support the Philips RCMM codes, but there is an exception, I believe it's the Harmony 670, that does not.

 

Most of the Harmonys support the Philips RCMM codes, but there is an exception, I believe it's the Harmony 670, that does not.

 

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Jun 28, 2010 1:01:41 PM
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I used Flipper Remote for an elderly friend.  Great reviews on Amazon!  http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002GR1YZ0

I used Flipper Remote for an elderly friend.  Great reviews on Amazon!  http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002GR1YZ0

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Jun 29, 2010 12:04:49 PM
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Too bad for the OP that we, as subscribers, do not own the UV remotes.  We could then tape off or in some other fashion, disable the uneeded controls.  The On, Channel and Vol up and downs are not bad sized, IMHO.

Too bad for the OP that we, as subscribers, do not own the UV remotes.  We could then tape off or in some other fashion, disable the uneeded controls.  The On, Channel and Vol up and downs are not bad sized, IMHO.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Jul 2, 2010 5:56:43 PM
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I took some red electrical tape and outlined the power, volume, and channel buttons plus printed a picture of the remote and added notes telling her how to use those buttons.  I also hid all but about 15 channels so that she could just rotate through the channel list until she found what she was looking for.  She has had a little success but not too much.

 

I wish that I could log in and change channels for her remotely.  She doesn't watch that much TV but she does like to watch the Atlanta Braves.  That also seems like something that could easily be done.

 

Someone is missing an opportunity to make a programmable remote that is elderly friendly.

I took some red electrical tape and outlined the power, volume, and channel buttons plus printed a picture of the remote and added notes telling her how to use those buttons.  I also hid all but about 15 channels so that she could just rotate through the channel list until she found what she was looking for.  She has had a little success but not too much.

 

I wish that I could log in and change channels for her remotely.  She doesn't watch that much TV but she does like to watch the Atlanta Braves.  That also seems like something that could easily be done.

 

Someone is missing an opportunity to make a programmable remote that is elderly friendly.

Re: Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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Jul 3, 2010 7:24:19 AM
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The U-Verse remote is already a form of programmable universal remote.  It has to operate the set-top box, not just the TV, esp. for channel-changing.  So like others say there are probably few 3rd-party remotes that can do that.

 

Another issue to face is that the dementia will probably only get worse over time so at some point, the elderly person can't be left alone to operate the TV and for other reasons.

The U-Verse remote is already a form of programmable universal remote.  It has to operate the set-top box, not just the TV, esp. for channel-changing.  So like others say there are probably few 3rd-party remotes that can do that.

 

Another issue to face is that the dementia will probably only get worse over time so at some point, the elderly person can't be left alone to operate the TV and for other reasons.

Re: Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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Jul 3, 2010 9:52:07 PM
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brannose wrote:

I took some red electrical tape and outlined the power, volume, and channel buttons plus printed a picture of the remote and added notes telling her how to use those buttons.  I also hid all but about 15 channels so that she could just rotate through the channel list until she found what she was looking for.  She has had a little success but not too much.

 

I wish that I could log in and change channels for her remotely.  She doesn't watch that much TV but she does like to watch the Atlanta Braves.  That also seems like something that could easily be done.

 

Someone is missing an opportunity to make a programmable remote that is elderly friendly.


Too bad Some Joe can't add that feature to his program.


brannose wrote:

I took some red electrical tape and outlined the power, volume, and channel buttons plus printed a picture of the remote and added notes telling her how to use those buttons.  I also hid all but about 15 channels so that she could just rotate through the channel list until she found what she was looking for.  She has had a little success but not too much.

 

I wish that I could log in and change channels for her remotely.  She doesn't watch that much TV but she does like to watch the Atlanta Braves.  That also seems like something that could easily be done.

 

Someone is missing an opportunity to make a programmable remote that is elderly friendly.


Too bad Some Joe can't add that feature to his program.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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Jul 4, 2010 4:44:04 AM
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I have been using a Harmony 670 for about 21/2 years and it works well. However, it is not good for changing channels mainly because of the 4 digit channel numbers. I have worked with Logitech support on numerous occasions but I believe it is a line of sight issue. Many times I will use the Uverse remote to change channels. 

I have been using a Harmony 670 for about 21/2 years and it works well. However, it is not good for changing channels mainly because of the 4 digit channel numbers. I have worked with Logitech support on numerous occasions but I believe it is a line of sight issue. Many times I will use the Uverse remote to change channels. 

Re: Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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Jul 12, 2010 10:53:06 AM
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Here is a picture of the Flipper.  It works the TV and U-Verse only.  Program in the favorite channels, and the buttons scroll through them.  The set up locks also, and the sliding door covers the unneeded

buttons but they are available if desired.  I got it here:  Flipper Big Button Remote

 

1776i5933E4FCEB887989

 

 

Here is a picture of the Flipper.  It works the TV and U-Verse only.  Program in the favorite channels, and the buttons scroll through them.  The set up locks also, and the sliding door covers the unneeded

buttons but they are available if desired.  I got it here:  Flipper Big Button Remote

 

1776i5933E4FCEB887989

 

 

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Jul 14, 2010 7:51:20 AM
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I recently got a Harmony One.  Initially I was disappointed with how things worked.  It was supposed to replace remotes for Uverse, TV, and AV receiver.  It did the basic job, but I guess I expected more.

 

Well, since the initial setup I began tweaking the remote setup and am much happier with the results.  The One has room for 6 touchscreen buttons (displayed at once).  I was able to add desired missing UVerse buttons on the touchscreen which addressed some of my complaints.  There was no "back" button for navigating through any on-screen menus, so I added that.  There also was no button for direct access to your recordings, so I added one for that as well.  Then just adding a few favorite channels on the remote and naming them was another plus.   I still need to experiment with some of the IR delay settings so I can hopefully get it to enter all 4 digits more quickly for the favorites.

 

The One comes with rechargeable batteries, so it addresses the issue of replacing batteries.  It has a nice charging base.  The downside is that battery life is not great.  I don't see going quite a full week between charges, but I have not pushed the limits just yet.  So I am speculating based on seeing the battery level drop to around 25% after 5 or so days.

 

The Logitech Harmony One could be an acceptable solution as long as there is someone willing to put in the time and effort to deal with fine tuning its operation to suit the user's specific needs.  It probably would fall short if it you just do the basic setup though.

I recently got a Harmony One.  Initially I was disappointed with how things worked.  It was supposed to replace remotes for Uverse, TV, and AV receiver.  It did the basic job, but I guess I expected more.

 

Well, since the initial setup I began tweaking the remote setup and am much happier with the results.  The One has room for 6 touchscreen buttons (displayed at once).  I was able to add desired missing UVerse buttons on the touchscreen which addressed some of my complaints.  There was no "back" button for navigating through any on-screen menus, so I added that.  There also was no button for direct access to your recordings, so I added one for that as well.  Then just adding a few favorite channels on the remote and naming them was another plus.   I still need to experiment with some of the IR delay settings so I can hopefully get it to enter all 4 digits more quickly for the favorites.

 

The One comes with rechargeable batteries, so it addresses the issue of replacing batteries.  It has a nice charging base.  The downside is that battery life is not great.  I don't see going quite a full week between charges, but I have not pushed the limits just yet.  So I am speculating based on seeing the battery level drop to around 25% after 5 or so days.

 

The Logitech Harmony One could be an acceptable solution as long as there is someone willing to put in the time and effort to deal with fine tuning its operation to suit the user's specific needs.  It probably would fall short if it you just do the basic setup though.

Re: Simplifying the Uverse remote for elderly - Logitech Harmony

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