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iPhone and PS3 to talk to each other in Blu-ray Disc movies

As wonderful as Logitech’s Harmony universal remotes are, there’s still one major piece of media entertainment equipment that it still cannot command: the PlayStation 3. Enter the iPhone, which will soon be able to interface with Sony’s console.

Blu-ray Disc solutions provider Netblender will announce later this week a new SDK for iPhone developers which will expand the features of movie playback on the PS3. One immediate benefit is that the iPhone will be able to act as a wireless remote for the PlayStation 3, perhaps robbing away several sales of Sony’s multimedia remote.

Denny Breitenfeld, the CTO of NetBlender, explained to Gizmodo that the upcoming software will be able to do much more than play, pause and track. “It's a technology that is built into our professional Blu-Ray authoring tool that will allow studios, independent movie companies to enable BD Touch features. These features send data in two directions from the Disc to the iPhone and vice versa. Video, Audio, text, and player commands can be sent,” he said. “So right now it seems everyone likes the "remote control" idea. However the player can control the iPhone as well.”

While movie studios may not program special Blu-ray Disc movie features specifically for PlayStation 3 users, the possibility exists for special iPhone interoperability, such as the display of Internet Movie Database information.

“One idea is to automatically pull up [IMDB] of the movie you are watching right on your Iphone or send the movie information a movie database on your phone. The ideas are only limited to what people want and will use,” added Breitenfeld.

Other functions could be for the iPhone to record and track your movie collection and playback habits. Another feature, first revealed by Sony for the PSP, is the potential for portable copies for playback on the iPhone or iPod Touch.

Sony first discussed this feature at CES 2008, but hasn’t yet set a firm date on the rollout of the technology.



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who cares
By omnicronx on 4/9/2008 9:11:21 AM , Rating: 2
Who cares? Sony made the GIANT blunder of not including an RF receiver on the PS3. After all they are selling the thing as a media center first, game console second.

My point here is you still need more than one remote, since chances are all your other devices are controlled via RF, so why go through the trouble of using a crappy iphone touch screen?

Ill stick with my ps3 remote for 30 dollars thanks.




RE: who cares
By Vertigo101 on 4/9/2008 9:14:03 AM , Rating: 2
You mean IR, not RF.


RE: who cares
By uhgotnegum on 4/9/2008 9:17:27 AM , Rating: 2
eh...RF is better, in my opinion (e.g., no line of sight, etc.), but IR has higher supply w/ remotes.

He(She?) probably did mean RF, though.


RE: who cares
By omnicronx on 4/9/2008 9:31:50 AM , Rating: 2
I did ;)... early in the morning


RE: who cares
By Flunk on 4/9/2008 12:12:41 PM , Rating: 1
Then you fail, as Bluetooth is an RF protocol. The Playstation 3 is RF only, if you had meant IR this would have made more sense.


RE: who cares
By deeznuts on 4/9/2008 12:59:23 PM , Rating: 5
Burn! Anyways, Sony decided to leave IR off their PS3. Fine. Why doesn't anyone put BT on their remote? Remember, the remotes are universal, Sony never said the PS3 will work with all remotes. IT's the remote's company's job to make their remote work with components.

I am no CE expert, is it that hard to implement BT into a remote?


RE: who cares
By Blight AC on 4/10/2008 8:16:20 AM , Rating: 2
Not hard, expensive. Look at BlueTooth Keyboard/Mouse combo's compared to the plain jane wireless ones.


RE: who cares
By GreenyMP on 4/11/2008 11:44:51 AM , Rating: 2
The PS3 remote is only $25. So it really can't be that expensive. I guess compared to a $8 Wal-mart universal it could be considered expensive.

It would be cool to see other devices (especially higher end devices) incorporate bluetooth control. Then you could eventually do more stuff like automatically mute or pause during phone calls, automatically power up or start music when someone enters the room (with their paired phone), and other totally non-essential cool features like that. Plus you could have a hardware closet with no line of sight.

Why don't we have these things?


RE: who cares
By MultiCore on 4/9/2008 9:49:50 AM , Rating: 1
The only bluetooth remote I've seen is the one that Sony sells for the PS3. Everyone with a Harmony or similar macro remote is completely left out in the cold. Sony completely screwed a lot of people who bought the PS3 primarily as a Blu-Ray player plus bonus games console.


RE: who cares
By theapparition on 4/9/2008 10:36:38 AM , Rating: 2
There is no standard protocol for RF like there is IR, e.g. You can't buy any universal remote with "universal" RF. Any RF universal remote uses a propriatary RF to communicate with a base station which then relays IR commands.

So, Omni definately meant IR.


RE: who cares
By Master Kenobi (blog) on 4/9/2008 9:19:27 AM , Rating: 1
I never quite understood why they didnt just put an RF port on the PS3. The rough cost would have been only a dollar or two. I don't get it.


RE: who cares
By MagnumMan on 4/9/2008 9:22:44 AM , Rating: 3
When you are losing money on every box you sell, it's hard to justify adding anything else to it. They certainly could have added it when destroying PS2 compatibility (taking out the PS2 emulator to save money) - one of the worst mistakes I can remember.


RE: who cares
By omnicronx on 4/9/2008 9:34:53 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
When you are losing money on every box you sell, it's hard to justify adding anything else to it.
That makes sense, if you were selling your console primarily as a gaming console, this was not Sony's intention. I don't see how you can tout that you are the all mighty entertainment console, when you do no have a simple piece of equipment that is in almost every consumer electronic in your living room..


RE: who cares
By Carl B on 4/9/2008 1:23:19 PM , Rating: 3
You can tout it because you are mightier than all of the other entertainment options in your capabilities, with or without the IR. That is afterall why folk want to be using their harmony's with this thing to begin with, is it not?

The folk whining about IR and the PS3 are the same lot that were claiming they would never use the PS3 for the purposes (A/V) which they are now clamoring to do. To say nothing that the 'gaming console second' argument is a total strawman to begin with. (Guess what, more PS3 games have been sold than Blu-rays)

Get over it, it doesn't have IR. Go buy a Panasonic and stop railing.


RE: who cares
By Reclaimer77 on 4/10/2008 7:50:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
When you are losing money on every box you sell, it's hard to justify adding anything else to it. They certainly could have added it when destroying PS2 compatibility (taking out the PS2 emulator to save money) - one of the worst mistakes I can remember.


Uhh its costs about 20 times more for them to use Blue Tooth instead of an IR setup. So I'm not sure how much costs savings is going on.

I'm sure the yuppies who already own an I-phone and a PS3 are jazzed, but yeah I agree with the OP. Who cares. Besides, the I-phone is a POS.


RE: who cares
By Vertigo101 on 4/9/2008 9:46:55 AM , Rating: 2
The PS3 has at least 2 different RF communication radios, and no IR.


RE: who cares
By deeznuts on 4/9/2008 1:00:53 PM , Rating: 1
You mean IR.


RE: who cares
By Master Kenobi (blog) on 4/10/2008 7:55:44 AM , Rating: 2
Right. IR. Need more coffee. :(


RE: who cares
By TimTheEnchanter25 on 4/9/2008 10:18:33 AM , Rating: 4
You could also argue that Logitech is making a huge mistake by not adding bluetooth to one of their remotes. I love the Harmony remote that I have now, but I buy buy a new one tomorrow if they added bluetooth. It's not like Logitech doesn't know how to use Bluetooth.

You can also get one of these things: http://ir2bt.com/

You tell your remote that it is controlling a PS2. The remote sends an IR command to the device and it sends the correct PS3 bluetooth command to the PS3.

But, for $55 I can live with using the PS3 controller till logitech gets off their ass.


RE: who cares
By theapparition on 4/9/2008 10:37:56 AM , Rating: 2
That's a nifty little device. Was wondering how long it would take before someone came up with a solution. One of the reasons I never bought a PS3 to begin with.


RE: who cares
By AlphaVirus on 4/9/2008 10:42:46 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
One of the reasons I never bought a PS3 to begin with.

Because it does not have IR included?


RE: who cares
By omnicronx on 4/9/2008 10:54:04 AM , Rating: 2
Without a doubt!, its probably the number one reason for lagging ps3 sales too!..


RE: who cares
By AlphaVirus on 4/9/2008 12:38:21 PM , Rating: 2
I think you forgot /sarcasm at the end of your sentence. lol

I will not believe the exclusion of an IR port is the reason anyone will avoid the purchase of a game console. I understand some people have their entire house connected through a single device, but whats 1 extra device going to hurt? Your pride of having to be like normal people and use 2 remotes, is that the problem is?

I would rather believe "Its too costly" or "Waiting for better games" much quicker than "I need IR"


RE: who cares
By theapparition on 4/10/2008 9:25:54 AM , Rating: 2
Don't pretend to think that you know everyone and how their systems work.

For example, all my equipment for my home theater installation is housed in another room, and out of reach for the BT remote. So how is that going to help me?

So for me, yes, lack of IR was the single biggest reason I did not buy a PS3......It wasn't cost, the Pioneer Elite that took it's place cost approx 2 as much.......that's what it was worth to me. Nor was it the game excuse, since I don't really have time to play games. I also do not regret my decision one bit, and still think they should have included the 50cents worth of hardware for IR.


RE: who cares
By AlphaVirus on 4/10/2008 10:25:19 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Don't pretend to think that you know everyone and how their systems work.

I was not trying to imply that I do, honestly I dont care to.
quote:
For example, all my equipment for my home theater installation is housed in another room, and out of reach for the BT remote. So how is that going to help me?

Out of range? How big is your house? A mansion? If you do happen to live in a mansion, then this is a good excuse but if you live in regular 1,200-2,000sq.ft. house then you can't use that excuse.
Besides if all of your home theater is in one room, just put the PS3 in that room, right? And use a 2nd remote?

quote:
It wasn't cost, the Pioneer Elite that took it's place cost approx 2 as much.......that's what it was worth to me. Nor was it the game excuse, since I don't really have time to play games.

!!!!!!!!!!
Then what are you complaining for!!!
Get a blu-ray player that has IR.


RE: who cares
By theapparition on 4/10/2008 12:42:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Out of range? How big is your house? A mansion? If you do happen to live in a mansion, then this is a good excuse but if you live in regular 1,200-2,000sq.ft. house then you can't use that excuse.

Yes, out of range. BT barely works from 5ft away, much less 30, and is spotty at best. And my house is over 6000sqft.
Once again, you miss the issue, the HT equipment is in a separate room from the viewing area. Putting the PS3 there (exactly what I want to do) prohibits me from using the BT remote. And since they don't have full IR functionality from the USB add ons, that's not a good solution either. And since everything is high end, why the hell should I compromise and have to use 2 remotes because sony told me so?

quote:
Then what are you complaining for!!!
Get a blu-ray player that has IR.

My original post was that I thought the IR2BT device was pretty cool, and that's one of the reasons I never bought the PS3 to begin with. You replied that you felt it was doubtful that lack of IR was a decision factor. I countered you, I'm not complaining at all. I have 2 BR players now, neither of them the PS3. But if this device works well, I may change that decision in the future.


RE: who cares
By tastyratz on 4/9/2008 10:59:25 AM , Rating: 3
I have the nyko blu-wave remote for my ps3
simple 15$ solution to my problem. I programmed my harmony to use the nyko controls and went on my way.
Only thing I really cant do is power the system up/down and anything the bluetooth controller can do that you cant do on the regular controller. I always just used the regular controller anyways.


RE: who cares
By omnicronx on 4/9/2008 10:42:45 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
You could also argue that Logitech is making a huge mistake by not adding bluetooth to one of their remotes.
Why should harmony and logitech cator to the PS3 exclusively? Why should they add the extra cost of bluetooth, when no home consumer electronic right now utilizes it? Furthermore, I am sure it is a totally different process for a remote to memorize a custom bluetooth command, compared to an IR signal. Don't think just because logitech makes bluetooth devices that they somehow know how to intermingle the two devices together, its probably a lot harder than one would think.

As i said, Sony dug their own bed here, don't blame it on the companies that make the remotes for a vast amount of consumer electronics, not just merely for ps3 owners.


RE: who cares
By Murst on 4/9/2008 11:23:56 AM , Rating: 2
As has been said in numerous posts here already, ir2bt will make your harmony remote work w/ the PS3.

The device promises to transmit "all 51 Sony Blu-ray remote codes including the PS button for Power On / Off." It operates off two AA batteries, or a mini-USB connector. The device will set you back $55.


RE: who cares
By Grast on 4/9/2008 11:24:59 AM , Rating: 2
The only reason I could think is over a 1 million PS3's worldwide. I am sure a PS3 guru will correct my number. But the fact remains that PS3 has a large base of users.

It would be a good business solution to create and offer a new universal remote. I would think that many PS3 owners continue to use more than remote due to a lack of Bluetooth capable.

I always assumed that Sony is preventing Harmony and Logitech from creating a remote with licensing issues. If licensing issues are a reality, it would make such a remote cost prohibitive and thus the current delimma.

Later..


RE: who cares
By omnicronx on 4/9/2008 12:03:44 PM , Rating: 2
Occording to VG Sony has sold 11 million PS3's, but that still does not change the fact its the only piece of equipement that primarily uses bluetooth. I am not saying it's a bad idea, I would love to be able to control my ps3 from one remote, but I don't blame harmony or logitech for a second. Not when the possible number of consumer electronics they can cator too is in the 100's of millions. Just because you 'want' this feature, does not mean it makes good business sense, and as previous posters have noted, there are ways around this problem anyways.


RE: who cares
By deeznuts on 4/9/2008 1:03:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Why should harmony and logitech cator to the PS3 exclusively?


Eh, ever heard of the term UNIVERSAL REMOTE? As in, we're going to make a remote that will attempt to control all devices, as many as we can? One with a 11 million user base and growing, isn't small potatoes. I'd venture it is more than several other components combined.


RE: who cares
By deeznuts on 4/9/2008 1:03:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Why should harmony and logitech cator to the PS3 exclusively?


Eh, ever heard of the term UNIVERSAL REMOTE? As in, we're going to make a remote that will attempt to control all devices, as many as we can? One with a 11 million user base and growing, isn't small potatoes. I'd venture it is more than several other components combined.


RE: who cares
By ObiDon on 4/9/2008 1:59:30 PM , Rating: 2
i have... and the word "universal" implies that it will control everything , yet the harmony won't control my garage door opener, car alarm, or any of my portable heaters.

what the hell kind of crap is that?!?


RE: who cares
By HighWing on 4/9/2008 1:04:13 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Why should harmony and logitech cator to the PS3 exclusively? Why should they add the extra cost of bluetooth, when no home consumer electronic right now utilizes it?


Completely throwing out the fact that the PS3 does have a large enough user base to justify it. What about Media Center PC's? With a Bluetooth adapter wouldn't it make the Harmony remote all the more better if you could also use it as a mouse on your HTPC?

But even throwing all that aside the one glaring reason is that Logitech markets the Harmony remote as "THE" universal remote. So for them to keep that title they should consider adding Bluetooth/PS3 support. Even if not just for the PS3, for the possibility of the fact that other manufactures could start making Bluetooth remotes as well. Personally I prefer a Bluetooth/RF remote to IR since there is no worry of line of sight


RE: who cares
By Pembo210 on 4/9/2008 3:58:45 PM , Rating: 2
If they added bluetooth to the remote, then figure out how to make it control my computer's media center too through it's BT connection. Now I'm buying one!


RE: who cares
By XBMC Fan on 4/10/2008 11:36:57 AM , Rating: 2
There is also this one:

http://www.remotecentral.com/articles/ir4ps3_full_...

I don't own it or a PS3, but as an owner of a Pronto NG remote, I've been keeping an eye on my options in case I do get a PS3. I love Xbox + XBMC (I have three in the house), but the Xbox doesn't have the horsepower for high definition H.264 content, so I will eventually have to replace them...


Touch too?
By uhgotnegum on 4/9/2008 9:19:39 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe I'm dumb for asking, but the article uses "iPhone" throughout...will the Touch have these capabilities too?




RE: Touch too?
By Rolphus on 4/9/2008 9:28:10 AM , Rating: 2
I would assume not, as the iTouch doesn't have Bluetooth, and that's purportedly how this app communicates with the PS3.


RE: Touch too?
By FITCamaro on 4/9/2008 9:29:24 AM , Rating: 2
This is a custom application developed using the iPhone SDK it seems. I don't believe you can create your own apps for the Ipod Touch. So I would say no.

I think this line in the article says it best though for using the iPhone as a remote.

quote:
perhaps robbing away several sales of Sony’s multimedia remote


It might cost a few sales, but I seriously doubt many iPhone owners (assuming they have a PS3) are going to use it to control their PS3. They likely already have the Blu-ray remote anyway.


RE: Touch too?
By FITCamaro on 4/9/2008 9:30:39 AM , Rating: 2
Sorry didn't know the Touch didn't have Bluetooth so yeah, definitely won't have this ability.


RE: Touch too?
By JazzMang on 4/9/2008 9:42:18 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I don't believe you can create your own apps for the Ipod Touch.


IIRC, yes you can... or will be able to.


By Scalptrash on 4/9/2008 11:27:28 AM , Rating: 3
Logitech's first Mediaboard keyboard for the PS3 used RF and you had to plug in an RF adapter in one of the USB ports. Their second generation of the Mediaboard uses bluetooth, no need for the RF adapter.

Point being, Logitech is already making bluetooth devices specifically for the PS3 and I have no doubt that one or more of the future Harmony remotes will have have bluetooth capability.

Like Blu-ray, Sony is trying to change the standard by which consumers control their multi-media devices. No matter how much you Sony haters don't like it, Sony is going to sell millions of PS3's world wide which will help to adopt bluetooth as the new multi-media control interface. Which totally makes sense, imo. If everything was bluetooth, you would have several devices that could work with each other and wouldn't have to be proprietary to each device.

I actually like the fact the PS3 uses bluetooth. You can use any (almost) bluetooth headset for voice, you can use bluetooth keyboards and mice and they are all wireless, work great and don't require line of sight.




By FITCamaro on 4/9/2008 12:23:45 PM , Rating: 2
Every TV, stereo, receiver, etc out there works off IR or RF. The rest of the world shouldn't have to change because Sony says so.


By Murst on 4/9/2008 1:44:45 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
The rest of the world shouldn't have to change because Sony says so

The rest of the world doesn't have to change... I'm not sure where you're getting that argument.

However, bluetooth is the future for connectivity. It has been happening in other accessories for several years now, and it will spread to remote controls as well. The advantages of bluetooth are pretty significant.

If anything, the argument could be made that Sony is too far ahead of its time. However, if the PS3 helps push bluetooth to remote control devices, then the world will be a better place.

The only advantage of IR over bluetooth is that current universal remotes do not work w/ bluetooth. That's a pretty insignificant advantage, and w/ the way the PS3 is selling, I wouldn't be surprised to see a bluetooth-enabled remote control coming out in the not-too-distant future.

The market for bluetooth-enabled remotes is certainly there, especially since people who spend money on technology like blu-ray are probably more likely to purchase a $100-$200 remote control over people who purchase a $25 dvd player.


By saiga6360 on 4/10/2008 3:55:56 PM , Rating: 2
The lack of IR support should have never happened. If some guy can piece on up with some spare time, knowhow and enterprenualship, then Sony engineers could have definitely saved us all the grief and 50$ for an add-on. They chose not to, obviously. Chalk it up to arrogance.


Why is none of this happening for the PSP
By aeroxander on 4/9/2008 9:41:58 AM , Rating: 2
On a slightly unrelated note, what erks me about this article is why isn't this type of development happening for the PSP.

I'd figure there are probably more people with PSP's and PS3's than iPhones and PS3's. Sometimes I find that Sony touts a lot functionality for their devices but never follows up with the development of that functionality. For example GPS functionality, PSP camera etc. the list goes on, and especially the amount of hype that Sony put up around how the PSP and PS3 would interact with each other.

I think it would be totally cool if I could interact with the blu-ray movie I am watching through my PSP while its still playing.

I do think its a cool idea for the iPhone though and still love my PS3 and PSP, just wish Sony would put more effort into the expanded functionalities of the devices.




RE: Why is none of this happening for the PSP
By AlphaVirus on 4/9/2008 10:40:19 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
especially the amount of hype that Sony put up around how the PSP and PS3 would interact with each other......I think it would be totally cool if I could interact with the blu-ray movie I am watching through my PSP while its still playing.

You sound like you are an owner of both a PSP and PS3, if I am wrong please correct me.

If you have not heard of it before, you should check out Remote Play. You can control your PS3 with your PSP through WiFi. Now of course you have to be in some sort of WiFi range for it to work but it does work.

Also I would suggest you subscribe to the Playstation Blog. Yesterday they had a post of another PSP firmware update that upgrades features of the PSP-PS3 connection.


RE: Why is none of this happening for the PSP
By Murst on 4/9/2008 11:17:52 AM , Rating: 2
As was mentioned above, remote play is one one to interact w/ the PS3. However, remote play will not let you control BD playback, since it makes your PS3 unusable while the PSP is connected.

In the last firmware update, features were added to control your music collection on the PS3 w/ a PSP. If your PS3 is connected to some sort of speakers ( that are not built in to your TV ), you can now use your PSP as a remote control for your music collection, and it will play it through the speakers, without having your TV turned on.

Also, it has already been said that the PSP will allow you to navigate Home (once it comes out).

I haven't tested the PSP as a remote control for BR playback, but if that isn't in place already, I would certainly expect it to be a feature that will be getting added. They have already mentioned that the PSP will allow you to playback certain BR movies on the handheld (although the movies will have to be created in a speficic way to enable this, so it will not be backwards compatible w/ movies already released).


By aeroxander on 4/9/2008 4:26:18 PM , Rating: 2
Yup, I have both, I keep meaning to give remote play a go again another feature which sounds like it could have lots of potential, I just hope Sony continues to develop it.


Nyko BluWave Remote
By hongkongbeef on 4/9/2008 10:24:01 AM , Rating: 2
All playstation 3 owners with Harmony remotes should get the Nyko BluWave IR-USB adapter for ps3. Harmony has it in the database. Just add Nyko adapter as a device.

$17 at Amazon




RE: Nyko BluWave Remote
By theapparition on 4/9/2008 10:38:39 AM , Rating: 2
Doesn't help the power on issue.


sony bias
By jdr123 on 4/10/2008 7:57:35 AM , Rating: 2
It is interesting that Apple seem to be going out of their way to work with PS3, when they refused mircosoft who approached them about ipod integration with 360.




RE: sony bias
By saiga6360 on 4/10/2008 3:49:46 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe if the 360 had the same issue with IR vs bluetooth for Blu-Ray and DVD playback as the PS3, then you have something REAL to gripe about.


By michal1980 on 4/9/2008 9:33:36 AM , Rating: 2
google ir2bt

someone made an ir to bluetooth convertor box for the ps3. Harmony even has it in the database.

~50 dollars.




By whirabomber on 4/9/2008 11:26:31 AM , Rating: 2
... never had a use for crapple products but if I can tie it into my main Bluray player (PS3) it might be worth my effort to find an unlocked iPhone.




By sxr7171 on 4/9/2008 5:05:09 PM , Rating: 2
Bluetooth phone like WM6 and Symbian. I think someone will do it eventually.




I think its great
By Soldier38 on 4/9/2008 5:18:07 PM , Rating: 2
I just bought a iphone and I love it, add this feature I say, I will be the envy of my friends, they will flip when they see that my Iphone can remotely control my blu ray movies on my PS3!




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