Credit: Photo by Jim Reese (free use with credit from Wikipedia).



It's hard to imagine life without remote controls, but it's been a long strange path to the modern incarnation we know, and love, today.
Lazy Bones Ad
Flash-Matic Ad
Robert Adler
Flash-Matic
Zenith’s Space Command Ad
Zenith’s Space Command Ad
Space Commander 600
Jerrold Remote Control
Early-IR
Panasonic IR Remote
Zenith Z-Trak
Logitech Harmony One
Pronto 9600
  
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Slide 7 of 13
Space Commander 600

A closeup of a later-model Space Commander shows that it added tint adjustment to its other remote capabilities and had been “promoted” from Command to Commander. Over nine million ultrasonic remotes were sold during that era, even though they significantly raised the price of a TV. If you wanted a TV with a remote control, you typically paid about a third more.

Read more: A History of TV Remote Controls