Pioneer rolled out a couple of new Blu-ray players today, otherwise unremarkable except for one key feature: They're both smart enough to be controlled by an iPhone and iPod Touch app. Connect either player into your network, and then Pioneer's free iControlAV app lets you control all the player's functions using your iPhone, iPod Touch (and we presume, iPad) over your Wi-Fi network.
While we like the notion of controlling the world with our iPhones, it's one of those ideas that's a whole lot better in theory than in practice. In our experience, the iPhone makes a lousy remote control, simply because you must always be looking at it as you control home theater devices. We'd rather have a physical remote, manipulating each function by the feel and location of each button, while we keep our eyes on the screen.
If you don't believe us, go for it. The low-end model is the BDP-330 (pictured in the gallery below), selling for $230, and the pricier and better-performing BDP-LX53 (pictured above) commands a premium price of $800. Look for both to ship next month.