LG Magic Remote gets Siri-like voice recognition

LG has refined its Magic Remote controller with language recognition so that you can talk to your smart TV remote similar to Siri, the voice assistant feature on iOS.

The remote will be compatible will LG’s 2013 range of smart TVs, Blu-ray players and cinema systems, and will come bundled with the company’s top of the line TVs, while a second slightly larger version without the backlit buttons will be included with the standard TV range.

The LG Magic Remote can do quite a few tricks, with the headline feature being language recognition. The remote has a microphone button. Once you press it you hold the remote a few inches from your mouth and tell it what you’re looking for.

Previous version of the remote also featured voice controls but they were much more basic, as you had to use individual search queries to navigate between items. The new version understands natural language, according to LG. The company says the software will be able to understand when you ask the remote to “show Gangnam-style videos” and other such commands.

The Magic Remote has a scroll wheel in the center that users can use to scroll up and down Web pages on smart TVs, or for zooming in and out Google Maps. The remote is also gesture-enabled, so you can press and hold the OK button and write in the air the number of the channel you want to watch.

Gestures can be used to access oft-used menus or perform frequently needed functions as well. For example, you move the remote sideways to the right while holding down the OK button to go to the previous channel or make a V shape for a recent list of programs and contents you watched.

I’m not entirely convinced speaking to your TV remote is the next big thing, but we will have to wait and see until January at the International CES what surprises LG has in store for the TVs that are meant to be controlled by these remotes.

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