Microsoft officially announces Xbox One Media Remote

While the Xbox One Media Remote got revealed prematurely last week thanks to an Amazon.com page leak, today Microsoft officially announced its plans to release the newest accessory for its latest game console. The remote control will go on sale globally in early March, with U.S. residents paying $24.99 for the device.

The Xbox Wire website has more details on the Media Remote, which Microsoft says has a "soft, silicone finish". It offers users control over both streaming video from the console as well as Blu-ray movie discs. The top of the remote contains both Back and OneGuide buttons, the latter of which lets users access movies and TV shows via the Xbox One's Program Guide. 

The Media Remote also controls the television's power and volume via the Kinect add-on and its IR blaster feature. Microsoft adds, "As soon as you pick up the remote, the motion-activated backlit buttons illuminate, allowing it to be used in the darkest of rooms while playing games, watching TV shows, movies and more." Basically, the remote is designed to be a replacement for the Xbox One's controller if you use the console more as an entertainment set-top box than a gaming machine.

Source: Microsoft | Image via Microsoft

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48 Comments

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Why doesn't it have numbers on it? If it's for media, and I assume to supplement the TV experience, then why would I want to scroll through a huge list of channels rather than simply punching in the channel's number?

Related to this point, if I had a large video library, why not allow me to push the numbers to select letters to jump to places in my library by name?

Windows Media Center does all of this, as does the XBOX 360 via WMC, so to me, this seems like a massive step backwards.

I heard about this a week ago. Thought that “I would never want this”. Somehow I ended up pre-ordering it today anyway.

Aeyoun said,
I heard about this a week ago. Thought that “I would never want this”. Somehow I ended up pre-ordering it today anyway.

Haha, nice! Impulse buying's great! Like my missus the other day, she saw a pair of shoes, and bought them "because they might go with a future dress, and they're cute!". A future dress she might never buy, another pair of cute shoes to look nice in the wardrobe! And she goes mad at me for having 3 pairs of rugby boots

Cover up the Kinect sensors with tape? The built-in microphone should then still work even without the other sensors.

Aeyoun said,
Cover up the Kinect sensors with tape? The built-in microphone should then still work even without the other sensors.

Does tape block an IR sensor? Ideally the remote would have a button you press to issue verbal commands and not an always active mic but that's just me dreaming. There is not a chance I would plug the Kinect in unless at some point I actually bought a motion game like a dance game in which case I'd plug it in the play the game then disconnect it when I was done. Really I can't see myself buying a dance game at all but who knows what game developers will do in the future with Kinect, maybe they'll eventually come up with something I actually want.

Asmodai said,

Does tape block an IR sensor?

It depends on the thickness and/or colour of tape. What you could do is cut out a square of cardboard about the thickness of a cereal box, and tape it to the front of the Kinect over the camera and/or sensors with black tape, that'll stop it in its tracks

Tidosho said,

It depends on the thickness and/or colour of tape. What you could do is cut out a square of cardboard about the thickness of a cereal box, and tape it to the front of the Kinect over the camera and/or sensors with black tape, that'll stop it in its tracks


rofl, I think I'll stick with leaving it in the box.

surprised for a media device that it took so long to get a remote going, i got so cheesed off with the xbox controller the other day that i nearly unplugged the xbox1 and put the ps3 back there as the bluetooth remote was excellent on that thing.

You know what would be an awesome addition to a "Media Remote"? How about Xbox One supporting Windows Media Center! Actually I like the previous black Media Remote better except it lacked a STOP button. Microsoft... always sooo close, but....

Thanks, but no thanks Microsoft. As I don't have cable TV, I need a remote to control my TV's volume, and this doesn't cut it. Ah well.

Exactly. This thing looks like a $4.99 universal pos you find at a flea market. The remote I have for my Alarm clock/HD radio looks more advanced than this.

The previous remote NEEDED that stuff, this one doesn't because a lot of the features work differently than that console did, whereas the remote isn't needed for that stuff. Hence why this is called a "Media Remote".... to control MEDIA.

It looks very nice. Great for people that don't want to use their phone for _everything_.

Nice and clean and not gaudy by any means. My PS3 remote is cool and all but this looks much nicer for a media device.

I would still like to see the companion app updated to work as a better media remote. The current app is not a pleasant experience when used as a paired remote.

Pretty ironic when you consider that the Kinect, bundled with every machine, is supposed to be the new remote with its voice technology.

Microsoft product management and marketing fail to impress again. Lack of coherence.

TheCyberKnight said,
Pretty ironic when you consider that the Kinect, bundled with every machine, is supposed to be the new remote with its voice technology.

Microsoft product management and marketing fail to impress again. Lack of coherence.

Not everyone wants to use voice for changing channels. How in the name of god can you complain about CHOICE? You don't need this to use the Xbox One's full potential, so why bother

Or how about people like my father-in-law who cannot speak? Maybe they would prefer a remote that is always on instead of having to wake up a control pad?

You're obviously ignorant to the fact that this is simply for choice. i.e. people that can't speak, people that don't want to use voice, people that don't have a tablet/phone, people that don't have a universal remote. Most people won't need this, but it's there for those that do. Simple as that.

"the motion-activated backlit buttons illuminate, allowing it to be used in the darkest of rooms while playing games, watching TV shows"

What if you cant find it in the darkened room

That thing looks horrible!!!

I am a big xbox fan! but this thing is just nasty! Why spend $25.00 for ANOTHER!! remove when you have a phone/tablet available? This should be a universal remote to control your channel
selection and have some programming for the xbox one to go to Hulu, or Netflix or XBOX Video with one click solution.

zerolimit said,
That thing looks horrible!!!

I am a big xbox fan! but this thing is just nasty! Why spend $25.00 for ANOTHER!! remove when you have a phone/tablet available? This should be a universal remote to control your channel
selection and have some programming for the xbox one to go to Hulu, or Netflix or XBOX Video with one click solution.

Why would you want one? How about not wanting to turn on your tablet or waste the battery from your phone....not to mention launching the smart glass app and connecting as opposed to just picking up your remote. Not to mention the batteries in a remote will last a very long time. I know I will be buying one.

Edited by Andrew, Feb 21 2014, 12:47pm :

zerolimit said,
This should be a universal remote
If you want a universal remote then buy a universal remote. Logitech Harmony already supports the XB1.

Romero said,
If you want a universal remote then buy a universal remote. Logitech Harmony already supports the XB1.
The Harmoney costs way to much money too.

Hi_XPecTa_Chens said,
The Harmoney costs way to much money too.
I think it's worth it, maybe you don't. I doubt the guy asking for a universal remote's gonna get (a good) one for $25 anyway.

Why didnt it come with the Xbox One? It certainly costs enough to cover it. After all, they are pushing for people to use it to watch Tv in place of a cable box. Seems this would have been included.

Why is it so thick? It should be thin. All you need is 2 AAA batts to run it. Its just buttons and a infrared sensor.

Because not everyone needs it? Kinect is more import than this. This is more for people who need it. Voice and Universal remotes work just fine.

j2006 said,
Because not everyone needs it? Kinect is more import than this. This is more for people who need it. Voice and Universal remotes work just fine.

Right but don't forget about the deaf people in the world that do not speak well due to bad english/their native language. So they use the controller/remote for media/gaming... and kinect for gaming gestures. No voice for them. A few deaf people who speak well, they probably use the voice if successful.