Rii Mini Wireless Keyboard HTPC Remote Now Available 
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Written by Dick Ward   
Friday, 05 March 2010

Let’s start by acknowledging that it’s called the Rii and is clearly following the Wii typeset just like every product designed t o compliment or mimic Apple’s franchise is dubbed some sort of iDevice.  The product information is riddled with spelling errors, and English that was almost certainly translated by Babelfish.  Clearly this is not a top-shelf operation.

Still, the Rii offers some very cool features that make it a contender for use as an HTPC remote.  It connects to your computer wirelessly over the 2.4Ghz spectrum via a USB dongle. It’s got LED backlighting for use of the full QWERTY keyboard in the dark.  It’s even got a laser pointer, though the practical applications of it are limited.

The main thing that the Rii offers that other HTPC remotes is the 90 degree turn button.  It’s just fine to use a keyboard with a laptop style touchpad on it while actively typing and browsing, but when you’re just trying to click an icon or navigate a DVD menu, the keyboard can become cumbersome.

Simply hit the 90 degree turn button on the Rii and both the touch pad and directional buttons will respond to the controller being held vertically instead of horizontally.  In other words, you can hold it like a normal remote, rather than like a keyboard.
The Rii is available now from Brando at $92.

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