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Gyro-remote takes control of XP

With a wave of the hand, a new gyroscopic remote control can direct a computer running Windows XP Media Center, says its maker Gyration.

Gyration, creator of the gyroscopic mouse, has unveiled a wireless, motion-sensing remote control and mouse device that has been designed specifically for Windows XP Media Center-based PCs.

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The Gyration Media Center Remote, introduced at the CeBit show in New York, is designed to replace the infrared remote control that is supplied as standard with systems running Microsoft's Windows Media Center (WMC) operating system.

Standard remote-control units supplied with WMC systems require line-of-sight contact and, as with most remote-control units, have about 40 function buttons. The Gyration product contains a gyroscope that allows a user to simply wave the device in the air in order to control a mouse pointer--or even the volume of a PC--which increases the device's functionality while reducing its complexity.

The product is different, because it communicates with the PC by using radio frequency signals, which means that it can control a PC that is stored out-of-sight--something that is not possible with infrared products.

"This is a vast improvement over traditional infrared remote controls," said Thomas Quinn, chief executive and cofounder of Saratoga, Calif.-based Gyration, in a statement. "In order to control their PCs, users need to simply wave their hand and click."

The WMC Remote comes with a software suite called GyroTools that contains more than 80 features, one being the ability to zoom in on text in order to make it easier to read.

The product is slated to be available in the United States and the United Kingdom later this year and is expected to cost between $150 and $180.

Munir Kotadia reported for ZDNet UK.