In this blog post, I’ll explore the best universal remotes you can get this year, diving into what makes them stand out in a competitive market.
So without further ado, here are my top universal remote picks for 2023:
- #1 – Editor’s Choice: Sofabaton X1
- #2 – Best App: Broadlink RM4 Pro
- #3 – Voice Control: Fire TV Cube
- #4 – Budget Sofabaton: U2
- #5 – For Apple TV: Function101
- #6 – Premium Pick: Harmony Elite
- #7 – Midrange Universal: Inteset
- #8 – Best For Seniors: Flipper
- #9 – Best Cheap Universal: GE
- #10 – Cheap Alternative: Philips
- #11 – One to Watch: Yio Remote
One Remote to Rule Them AllAs a tech blogger who has tested and written over 50 universal remotes, I’ve developed a passion for reviewing the best of the best in this constantly evolving market. This has been an especially interesting year, with some cool new players entering the fray and established brands refining their offerings.
When Logitech discontinued its famous Harmony line of remotes in 2021, the company left a void in the industry for others to fill.
Thankfully, this has led to a surge of innovation as newcomers and leading brands vie for the top spot in the universal remote game.
At the risk of being a bit sheepish, I’m thrilled to have you along as I look at the best universal remotes of 2023. We’ll explore some fresh innovations and reliable favorites, and I’ll share some insights from my personal experiences along the way.
While there is no perfect remote, they keep getting smarter each year. I pledge to do my best to blog about them until we find that ever-elusive one remote to rule them all.
Best Universal Remotes: Tim’s Top 3 Picks
Here’s a simple comparison table highlighting the key specifications of the top three best universal remotes on my list.
Last update on 06/02/2023 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
#1 – Editor’s Choice: Sofabaton X1
As an owner of the Sofabaton X1 universal remote, I’m impressed with its performance and user-friendly design. This remote controls up to 60 devices, making it ideal for managing my home entertainment components.
The mobile app simplifies the setup process, and the customizable OLED screen allows me to create and display my favorite activities with one press of a button.
One of the standout features of the Sofabaton X1 is its compatibility with a wide range of devices, including TVs, DVD players, Blu-ray players, projectors, AV receivers, soundbars, and streaming boxes. It also provides limited support for smart home devices like Philips Hue lights and Sonos speakers.
The rechargeable lithium-ion battery provides a staggering two months of battery life on a single charge, which is better than any remote I have tested.
Sofabaton X1 will let you control up to 60 devices from top brands. It features backlit buttons, one-click actions for multiple devices, a long-lasting rechargeable battery, and a cool LCD screen. This is the best universal remote out there right now.
You can check out this unboxing video I recorded of the X1 on my YouTube channel. Please subscribe!
#2 – Best App: Broadlink RM4 Pro
The Broadlink RM4 Pro is one of the best universal remotes for your smartphone. This hub and app combo offers exceptional mobile app support, making it one of my favorite universal remotes. Its intuitive smartphone app lets me easily control hundreds of home entertainment and smart home devices, including legacy IR devices like ceiling fans and old-school remotes.
Setting up the remote is straightforward, thanks to the app’s step-by-step guidance. Once up and running, I can seamlessly control and customize my home entertainment system. I especially love the app’s voice control feature that works with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
With compatibility for various devices, including TVs, set-top boxes, and air conditioning units, the Broadlink RM4 Pro features a built-in IR blaster and RF signal capabilities, making it a versatile all-in-one solution for home automation.
Broadlink RM4 Pro offers high compatibility with over 50,000 IR-controlled devices, but it doesn't support Bluetooth. It also features a newly updated Broadlink App for an enhanced user experience and scene creation.
Video ReviewVideo Credit: BroadLink International
#3 – Best Voice Control: Fire TV Cube
I’ve owned all three generations of the Fire TV Cube, and I must say that the 3rd generation is a significant improvement. The blazing-fast performance with an octa-core processor and Wi-Fi 6E support ensures smoother streaming.
The true-to-life, cinematic 4K with support for Dolby Vision, HDR, and Dolby Atmos audio provides an impressive viewing experience. The hands-free Alexa with built-in mic and speakers makes controlling my entertainment system a breeze, even from across the room.
Navigating between my entertainment has also been made easier with the Fire TV Cube. Connecting compatible devices and going from streaming to a cable box, game console, or webcam has never been easier. Plus, managing my smart home right on the screen with Alexa is a great feature I always use. While not one of the best universal remotes per se, the new Alexa remote that comes with the Cube is decent, and you can also upgrade to the Pro version.
- Brings lightning-fast app starts with an octa-core processor and is 2X as powerful as Fire TV Stick 4K Max.
- Control your compatible TV, soundbar, and receivers with your voice using Alexa, even from across the room.
Check out this unboxing video I did over at my YouTube channel. Please subscribe!
#4 – Budget Sofabaton: U2
The Sofabaton U2 Universal Remote is an impressive upgrade from its predecessor, the U1, bringing an array of enhancements to both design and functionality. It is an excellent choice for users who want a refined, user-friendly, and efficient universal remote experience at an affordable price.
The U2 remote sports a more elegant design, featuring smoother edges and a sleek finish. The buttons are larger and provide a satisfying click, making it more enjoyable. Furthermore, the remote’s infrared range is extended to 35 feet, increasing its versatility in larger spaces. Additionally, the battery compartment is now easier to access, adding to its overall user-friendly design.
However, there are a few drawbacks to the U2 model. The OLED display is slightly dimmer than its predecessor, and the price point is higher than the U1.
The improved Sofabaton U2 remote features a better design, more responsive buttons, enhanced infrared performance, and easier battery replacement, making it a worthy upgrade from its U1 predecessor.
Video ReviewVideo Credit: A-HIT
#5 – For Apple TV: Function101
I have also been testing the Function101 remote for my Apple TV, and I love it. This well-designed alternative to the traditional Apple TV remote focuses on simplicity and ease of use.
As one of the best universal remotes for Apple TV, the Function101 remote offers a refreshing change of pace for Apple TV users with its simple, straightforward design. Its durable build quality and dedicated volume and channel buttons make it a pleasure to use, while the infrared technology ensures reliable control of your device. The remote operates on AAA batteries, so there’s no need to worry about charging it.
#6 – Premium Pick: Harmony Elite
I have owned the Harmony Elite remote for several years, and while it’s no longer my top pick, it is still one of the best remotes out there. The Harmony line has been discontinued, but limited quantities are available at a premium price. The remote features a swipe-and-tap color LCD touchscreen, a sleek design, and customizable buttons, offering functionality and style.
Logitech’s extensive database of over 270,000 supported devices ensures compatibility with a broad range of home theater equipment, and you can also use it to control numerous smart devices.
The Harmony Elite provides comprehensive support for voice assistants, including Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit. The remote also enables seamless automation through one-button activities like “Watch TV,” “Date Night,” or “Good Morning,” which can integrate various smart home functions for a truly customized experience.
Once the best luxury remote to own, the discontinued-but-still-supported Harmony Elite remains a premium option for home theater and smart home control—if you can get your hands on one.
Check out my all-time-favorite Harmony review of the Elite from TeQreation here. Love the special effects!
📚 Related: 9 Best Logitech Harmony Alternatives
#7 – Mid-Range Universal: Inteset
The Inteset 4-in-1 Universal Backlit IR Learning Remote offers a reliable, straightforward solution for managing multiple devices. It allows you to control up to four devices, including streaming boxes, gaming consoles, and cable or satellite receivers.
This remote stands out with its pre-programmed device buttons, customizable macro buttons, and backlit keys for easy use in dimly lit environments. However, it lacks advanced features like voice control and smart home integration.
- Solid budget remote has been a fan favorite for years. It won't control your smart home, but it will control up to four home theater devices.
- Pre-programmed for Apple TV, Xbox One, Media Center, and Roku device codes, which are easily changed. Full LED Backlighting-All buttons.
#8 – Best For Seniors: Flipper
The Flipper Big Button Remote is a simple, user-friendly remote designed for seniors or those who prefer a minimalist approach. It combines TV and cable/satellite controls, eliminating the need for multiple remotes.
This remote features large, easy-to-read buttons and a straightforward design, making it accessible for users with limited dexterity or vision. However, it lacks advanced features found in more comprehensive universal remotes.
#9 – Best Cheap Universal: GE
The GE Universal Remote is a budget-friendly remote that offers a range of features to control multiple devices. It’s pre-programmed to work with various devices, including TVs, cable/satellite boxes, DVD/Blu-ray players, and streaming devices.
This remote boasts an easy-to-use design with large, backlit buttons for simple operation in dimly lit environments. It also offers advanced features like a dedicated “Netflix” button and voice control via Alexa and Google Assistant. However, it lacks some of the more advanced features in higher-end remotes.
- Controls up to four different audio and video components such as TVs Blu-Ray/DVD Players, Cable/Satellite Receivers, Roku boxes and other Streaming Media Players, Soundbars, and More.
- This universal remote comes pre-programmed for Samsung TVs and Roku boxes, works with all major brands, and supports thousands of the latest audio and video equipment.
Video ReviewVideo Credit: Take a Bath Productions
#10 – Cheap Alternative: Philips
Next on my list of the best universal remotes is this super inexpensive Phlips Universal Remote, which is pre-programmed to work with various devices, including TVs, cable/satellite boxes, and DVD/Blu-ray players. The large, backlit buttons make it easy to use in the dark, and there are macro buttons for customized commands. It even has a dedicated “Netflix” button for quick access.
However, there are some limitations to this remote. Its compatibility is limited to pre-programmed devices and lacks advanced features like voice control and smart home integration. Like the GE remote, the plastic build quality feels cheap.
- Multi Device Control - Operate Up To 3 Different Audio And Video Components Such As Tvs, Blu-Ray/Dvd Players, Cable/Satellite Receivers, Roku Boxes And Other Streaming Media Players, Soundbars And More
- Best Remote Code Library - This Universal Remote Works With All Major Brands And Supports Thousands Of The Latest Audio/Video Equipment
#11 – One to Watch: Yio Remote Two
I wanted to include the Yio Remote Two on my list of the best universal remotes. Why? This is an up-and-coming universal remote that promises to be the ultimate controller for a smart home. While I haven’t had the opportunity to test it yet, I have it on pre-order, and you can join the waitlist and be notified when it becomes available.
One of the standout features of the Yio Remote Two is its sleek, minimalist design. It has a high-quality aluminum body and a beautiful 3.5-inch touchscreen display. The remote is highly customizable, allowing you to create custom themes and button layouts.
The Yio Remote Two offers support for voice assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant, as well as a variety of smart home protocols like Zigbee and Z-Wave. This means you can control everything from your lights and thermostat to your TV and home theater system, all from one device.
Overall, the Yio Remote Two looks to be a promising option for those looking for a powerful and highly customizable universal remote. While it is unavailable, you can join the waitlist to be notified when it becomes available. However, its high price point and limited availability may make it less accessible for some users.
The Yio Remote Two is not available yet available.
However, you can join the Denmark-based company's waitlist by clicking on the Reserve button below.
Best Universal Remotes: What Do You Think?
I hope you enjoyed my review of the best universal remotes you can get right now.
So which do you think are the best remotes out there? Do you agree with my picks? Perhaps there is a product you like better than didn’t make my list? Do you believe that there is one remote to rule them all?
Please leave me a comment below and let me know.
Also, if you liked my review, would you mind sharing it using any social media buttons at the top or bottom of this page?
Here’s a video recap of all my top picks if you are interested:
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