media PC touchpad

Photo by JENI McGEE

My husband and I gave up on traditional means of entertainment a long time ago — and with cable went the traditional television.

Our current setup is a media PC-based system. In addition to the media PC, we have a projector and screen, as well as six speakers.

But the downside to having a media PC, instead of a traditional television, always has been the lack of a remote.

Now, the creation of wireless mice helped — one can control most of the basic functions of a computer from half a room away.

But while surfing the internet, Netflix or Hulu, there are some disadvantages. Without a keyboard, we have to use the on-screen keyboard.

The onscreen keyboard can be difficult to maneuver, too, because it sometimes double-clicks instead of single-clicks.

While there are many options out there for remotes, we wanted something that also provided a QWERTY keyboard.

It took us a while to find what we wanted for our setup. As luck would have it, Rii has just what we wanted — a complete keyboard and touchpad.

The Rii i8 Mini 2.4-gigahertz wireless touchpad keyboard with mouse retails for about $20.

Installation is as easy as inserting the USB receiver into a computer and charging up the remote.

The touchpad is sensitive, though. If you are too far away from the computer — say, 15 feet — it takes a second extra for the mouse to respond.

The remote is powered by a lithium ion battery that is charged with the assistance of a USB cable, which is included in the purchase.

The keyboard of this particular remote is backlit, so it can be seen well in the dark.

Overall, I would recommend this product to anyone who is looking to solve the same media PC control issues my family was confronting.